10 hours ago
Friday, April 11, 2014
Spring Break 2014--Day 3
Wednesday 9 April 2014
Wednesday was a promise kept! A few years ago we camped in Capitol Reef at one of the free campgrounds in the south district called Cedar Mesa. We contemplated hiking to Red Canyon nearby the next morning, but I had a weird feeling about it so we didn't. Ever since, I've had Red Canyon on our list of things to do and we finally knocked it out. It was a 5.4 mile hike across the desert and up a really long, winding wash. We practiced our route finding skills and really appreciated a certain wash crossing which featured no less than FOUR cairns! One might think, "Why FOUR cairns?" Well, experience has shown that four were necessary because things look really different on the way back than they do on the way up and those four cairns kept us on the right path! :) We finally found ourselves boxed out near the top of the wash in Red Canyon. We could have gone on just a bit more, but we were hungry so we headed back to the car. Those last few bouldering maneuvers were taking a toll on me as I hoisted my body up and over some different ledges, figuring out hand holds and foot holds and wondering how I would do getting back down. K, ever patient with my pace, gave his usual supportive comments. At one point I made this really awkward, but successful move remarking, "That's how Jody does it!" K said, in his relaxed, chill tone, "Whatever works." We did not see another soul the entire time. We hiked a lot in silence, but every now and then we would offer some conversation. At one point I asked, "So would you like deviled eggs and lemon squares for Easter?" K simply answered, "Yes and yes." We walked on.
After lunch at Cedar Mesa Campground we drove another thirty minutes south and hiked to Surprise Canyon. Seeing beautiful desert varnish on the canyon walls never gets old for me. The shade was my reward for putting in another 2 miles! We saw a pretty big lizard that we think was a chuckwalla. It ended up being a 7+ mile day! We were starting to feel sore.
Back at camp we were putting together our foil dinners when a lady from the RV next door came over to ask if she could have our spot the following morning! Sure! People have all sorts of reasons to visit us I guess. She and her family literally sang Kum Ba Ya by guitar that night, but with the grandparents, them, and their children all singing with harmony, it was the BEST Kum Ba Ya I have ever heard in my entire life!
I just wanted to mention one of the great little things my patient husband does for me when we camp. He heats up water so we can bathe before bed. We don't always take a full bath, but on this trip, we really needed to wash our legs and feet (well, of course, our faces, etc.) before bed. It is the nicest, most soothing thing in the desert to get some of the grit off before changing into pajamas. And he's the one that remembers to bring wash cloths from home for this task (I just rely on wet wipes when camping). I will always fondly remember these lovely, soothing, camping baths. Red Dirt Girl was saved by her thoughtful husband at the end of each day!