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Published: September 15th 2007
Arrived at Capitol Reef yesterday afternoon and camped at Fruita Campground. Fruita was a Mormon pioneer settlement from the 1800's which lasted until 1941. There is a school house, a blacksmith shop, the Gifford Farmhouse and barn, and the apple orchids by which they earned their living. A herd of mule deer ran through the meadows of the campground this morning.
We started out our day here, on the scenic drive. There are warnings everywhere not to enter if a storm threatens. The roads are frequently washed out when it rains. In the wash-outs, blacktop areas have been replaced with concrete - black top washes away - concrete doesn't. At the end of the scenic drive, we took the dirt road to Capitol Gorge. The gorge was beautiful, but really scary. Huge rocks hanging precariously over our heads as we drove though the really narrow canyon.
We walked a mile or so in and viewed the Pioneer Registry, which is a cliff wall with their pioneers names chipped into the wall and the year they passed through. We saw a lot of 1800 dates. It was a pretty flat hike until the last .2 of a mile where we
climbed up to the "Tanks", pockets of water in the rocks.
As we headed across the park on Route 24, we found the Petroglyphs site, where ancient Indians scribed pictures into the rock wall. It really fascinated me. It struck me as strange, that almost all the colors on the scenic drive were reds and oranges, and yet on this side it was mostly white. A short time later as we left the park, the colors became grays and tans. This scenery changes all the time.
We hit Interstate 70 and headed east and reached Green River in time for lunch. We decided to eat at Arby's for the first time. We had great salads there - mine was a "Martha's Vineyard", how appropriate since we are from MA. It had apples, cranberries, chicken and the dressing was raspberry vinegarette. We have added Arvy's to our great place to eat lunch list.
We were in desparate need of groceries and decided to skip any further sight seeing. We drove to Moab, a really quaint mid-sized town and did our shopping. Utah was the first state that we hit were you could not buy wine in a grocery
store. We had to go to a State Liquor Store. Unable to get a campsite at Arches, we decided to splurge and got a site in Riverside RV Park. Our site was really small and the neighbors were really close , but very friendly. The campground had great facilities, clean restrooms and showers, inexpensive laudromat and a dish-washing sink with hot water. The shower head were actually above Dave's head.
It was also very hot in Moab. We had a hard time sleeping due to the heat which was in the high 70's at bedtime. We were at 4000 feet elevation but it never got cooler than 68 degrees which it reached just before we got up.
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