April 19, 2017

Goat Park

On our third day in the San Rafael Desert, Daisy was tired from the previous days.  She didn't protest when we left her at the trailer.
We rode on an old two-track down Goat Park.  Above, Steve checks his GPS.
Boss's ears pricked up as he saw something moving maybe a quarter of a mile ahead.  That alerted me to this group of donkeys.  We rode very close to them before they ran away.
We rode along the rim of Blue John Canyon, checking for water where we had seen small pools before.  Surprisingly, in spite of a rainy spring, we didn't find water in the usual places.  We rode to the Red Nubs before turning back.
Daisy, of course, was glad to see us return.  Boss and Coco took us 50 miles in 3 days, a good workout for all.

Head Spur

On our second day in the desert, we rode toward the pyramid-shaped Head Spur.
Daisy enjoyed a dip in a pool.
Steve pointed out the Princess pictograph, which is faint now, faded by with sun and weather.
Behind some brush, a pour-off marks the entry of Moqui Canyon into the Spur Fork.
These small pictographs, only a couple of inches tall, have amazing detail.  The 4 figures on the right wear elaborate headdress.  They seem to be under some kind of tent or overhang.  On the right, we see 3 figures, a bird and a couple of insects?  It's always interesting to try to interpret ancient drawings.
On a rock wall near the Head Spur, we saw this rock art.  Someone in 1924 made his/her mark.
We rode back to the trailer at a trot, covering some rough country.

Shifting Sands

In early March, we squeezed in another trip to the San Rafael Desert.
 It's lonesome territory out there.  No wonder train robbers and other outlaws hung out there a century ago.

We rode toward the Chimney Rocks,
and down to Outlaw Springs.  The tip of Boss's ear appears in the photo.  Taking pictures off a horse's back doesn't provide the best quality.
The word is that the water is quite alkaline.  Our horses didn't drink much.  Daisy didn't mind swimming in it, though.
We explored some rock outcroppings, and found a few petroglyphs.

Underneath the hand prints, you might be able to see the shape of 2 horses and riders pecked into the rock.  This rock art isn't very old.  It might be the work of outlaws or cowboys.

March 5, 2017

Winter Wonders

Utah had almost double the average snowfall this year.  The skiing was great!
Kids and grandkids joined us for a week of fun in the snow. 
Even the six year old negotiated the slopes with skill.  She was soon passing up Grandma!  Since she's still too little to handle poles, she needed a little help on the occasional short uphill trek.
Back at home, one little visitor enjoyed brushing Mischief. 
And Grandma loved reading to the kids before bed.  What greater joy is there?  None that I can think of.

March 4, 2017

Keep Dimple Dell Wild

Hi everyone,
We've had a busy winter, with grandkid visits, skiing, lots of snow, and a few rides in between snowstorms. 

As spring takes hold, we have learned that Salt Lake County has plans to pave the north rim of Dimple Dell Park, one of our favorite riding spots year round.  Dimple Dell is a rare treasure with beautiful views, lots of raptors, wildflowers and deer, and many human users including mountain bikers, walkers with or without dogs, joggers, and horseback riders.  In winter, the hills are good for sledding, and cross country skiers enjoy the trails.  What's not to like? 
Dimple Dell's north rim is currently a bark trail, providing good footing for all, year round. Asphalt paving would disrupt wildlife during construction.  The asphalt would heat the trail in summer and make icy winter conditions dangerous.  Paving would encourage speeding bikers and skateboarders on the steep hills, which would be a hazard to people and horses alike.  Although the county promises an equestrian trail alongside the asphalt, that wouldn't solve most of the problems created by paving a 10 foot wide path, as is proposed.  Extensive dirt work would be required to widen the trail sufficiently in some places, which would end in erosion and loss of wildlife habitat. We have many paved walking/jogging/biking paths in the county already.  Dimple Dell's unique beauty begs to be preserved.
For those readers who live nearby and enjoy Dimple Dell, or for those who simply care about preserving wild areas for future generations,  here are some links for further reading and comment:

We attended a meeting in Dimple Dell Park this morning.  Many interested park users were present, supporting the Keep Dimple Wild Movement.  It's encouraging to see how many people care deeply about this issue. 
Please wish us luck.  We may need it. 


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