Day three started with me dead asleep and my girlfriend taking pictures. She got hot in the bedroom, and slept in the living room. This was the hottest day of our trip. I learned long ago how to sleep in even the most uncomfortable conditions. Too hot? Snooze. Too cold? Bundle up and snooze. Too noisy? Snooze with your middle finger extended. Sadly, that also meant I slept through the sunrise as captured by my sweetheart.
We made it our mission to explore the rest of the park. We saw Atlatl and the arch. We explored some of the quick scenes, but today we went to look at the actual sights. The first one we explored was the “Beehives.” Initially we avoided them thinking it was some kind of honey farm. You can laugh if you want to, but I’m allergic to bee stings. An emergency room trip would have made the vacation somewhat less fun. As it turns out Beehives is a formation that just looks like beehives. It’s what’s known as crossbedding… They are made of multiple layers, and winds were blowing different directions when the layers were formed. Much of the landscape here is sandstone. Incidentally, this is why everything gets sand in it when you stay there.
Speaking of which, the scenery there gets changed a great deal due to wind erosion. Since the area is made of primarily sandstone, the wind can more readily shape the formations. Those curves and swirls that you see were carved out by wind blowing sand on sand. Basically, it’s like sandpaper rubbing against the walls, and wearing it down. It creates the scooped out looking holes. As they get deeper they swirl more and more sand in and wear it down some more. And so on…
We did a quick stop at the “Petrified logs” and got to see them. It’s sad that they actually have to be behind a fence. But still, they are there, and we got to see them. I’m glad for that. Apparently according to the documentation, these trees have a modern relative(several actually). Though that was more of their guess about it too. I bet they don’t write letters to each other though.
We then headed over to “Mouse’s tank.” It’s a bit of a hike to get there. Actually it’s not necessarily a long hike. It’s just sand. And it’s in the burning heat. You walk down what looked to me like a dry creek bed. There are all kinds of hieroglyphics on the walls. I like to think of it as the early Facebook. They told their stories as best they could. Posted things to their wall. Told their friends what the gossip around town is. Updated their status. And gave spoilers to Game of Thrones…. Er ok maybe not that last one.
At the end of the trail is supposed to be a tank that will hold water for months after it rained. I guess it must have been months, because there was nothing in the hold except bees. Did I mention my love of bees? I took a picture of the empty tank. And again, because it looked like nothing in the picture it got deleted(“What the heck was this a picture of? The ground? DELETE”). I’m not busting on my girlfriend. Actually she knows pictures. So when she looks at a picture and says, “There’s nothing here,” chances are it’s a boring pic. I couldn’t tell, because the sun made it impossible to actually see the picture.
We headed back to the road to see a few more of the scenes. Up next was the Rainbow Vista. Rather than talk through it, I’ll let the pictures speak.
We went on to the white mounds. More sand. I was kind of surprised at how relatively undisturbed the sands were. You could see the tracks of many small animals. Mostly lizards. I did find one sidewinder track, but I didn’t exactly feel like tracking it down. Something about them not being particularly friendly.
As much as I enjoyed the view it was time to check out the rest of the park. Of course there isn’t any way to see the whole park in a day or two. We did see quite a bit, and this was the last of the park we would see on this trip. I cannot stress nearly enough that while the pictures may be gorgeous, the reality is that everything pictured is far more splendid in real life.
This last bit was the cabins that were originally built to provide shelter to the visitors. I think I prefer our RV, but I wouldn’t mind staying there. I mean fireplace, roof, views to die for. I was looking for the realtor signs haha.
It would be a shame to be so close to Vegas, and not at least stop in once. I wish we had thought ahead and gotten tickets to a couple of shows. But we decided to check out the Freemont Street experience. I like it because it is part of Old Vegas with a touch of new. The old signs are along Freemont street.
We walked up and down the street, and of course there were some street performers, and more adult themed performers as well. We headed back to the RV to have more pina coladas. Yeah, I know… Not drinking in Las Vegas seemed somehow wrong. But I don’t drink and drive(anymore), and we had to head back to the RV to sleep. The next day we would be heading to Willow Beach.
Oops, forgot the pics