for your inspiration: lin ottinger’s rock shop

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Located in Moab, Utah near Arches National Park, Linn Ottinger’s Rock Shop is a fascinating, fun, and funky place to spend an hour or two. The crazy conglomeration of mining mechanicals out front was too much to resist. Photographs were manipulated using the Snapseed App.

for your inspiration: the beauty of rocks

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During this road trip I spent time, as I always do in this landscape, gazing in wonder at the beauty created from minerals, time, wind, and water.

on the road: delicate arch

Pictures almost never do this landscape justice. They can capture a little bit of the vastness and beauty of this landscape but I don’t have the skill (yet) to truly capture what I see. And seriously, until we have that Star Trek holodeck you just can’t get that depth and dimension, the feeling of the heat on your skin and the sharp dry smell of the desert.arches_redrockThat doesn’t mean I didn’t have fun playing with apps that stitch lots of photos together and make ghost people in the process. (AutoStitch Panorama in this case.)

arches_off_the_cliffThis is the last little bit of the trail that we skipped during our night hike. With kids skipping in and out of the narrow path of our flashlight beam I think that was a good idea. It was really interesting how different the same hike was during the day in the scorching heat vs. the cool night. For one thing, there was no little pom-pom puff ball of a desert mouse thinking that my feet were a great hiding place from the big scary lights. That was another favorite thing about night hiking … seeing a few night creatures.arches_looking_back

Another difference between night and day: when you can’t see how very far you’ve come, how very steep the path is…arches_looking_up

…and how very far you still have to go to reach the next patch of shade, the hike seems much longer. We were skipping and running around under the stars and simply trudging under the hot sun. 
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 The views all along the trail are spectacularly rewarding though. arches_delicate_arch_shoesThe hard work paid off dramatically. 

 

on the road: moab and arches national park

horses_moab1I thought I’d be posting pictures during our recent family trip. If anyone has experience posting to WordPress blogs via an iPad let me know. Because it just wasn’t working…. there must be an app for that right? No matter. Just like going on a hike – the best view when you rest is looking back at where you came from!

horses_moab3The family went to Utah for my firstborn’s wedding. But first we skeedoodled down to Arches National Park in Moab for a a few days of playtime. We couldn’t fly all that way and not catch up on a few things we didn’t have time for on our epic road trip last summer. The big boys went mountain biking on the slick rock trail and managed to not take pictures. Imagine that! The rest of us took it easier and mosied along near the Green River on horseback.

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It was a very long and active day and the weather was, thankfully, perfect! After a hearty meal we rested up and went for a little wander to view some exposed fossils. It was good they had interprative signs because it took us a while to figure out what we were seeing. They looked just like the rest of the rock to us for a while until we learned what to look for. Then we went on a spectacular night hike. Truly spectacular!

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Photo by Albert Herring from Wikimedia Commons

If you’ve been to the Southeastern part of the United States you will understand how much I miss having a view and seeing the sky. I love North Carolina. I also call it the “Great Green Tunnel of Trees.” If you don’t mow or pave there will be a very tall tree there. It is beautiful but there are no views anywhere and you can only see a postage stamp of the sky right above you. I miss the stars.

Photo by Neal Herbert from Wikimedia commons

Photo by Neal Herbert from Wikimedia commons

We didn’t actually hike all the way up to the arch – we skipped the very last bit that involves narrow ledges and steep drop offs. Right before that last bit is a very large flat rocky place where we laid down on our backs and just gazed for a good hour. We had the Star Walk apps on our iPhones and enjoyed finding constellations and watching satellites zoom across the sky. Shooting stars, the Milky Way! What a beautiful and vast galaxy we inhabit.

 

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