We woke up early the next morning and drove to Arches National Park and stood outside the visitor's center waiting for it to open so we could get a map. Then we headed straight to Delicate Arch and started our hike.
Because it was still early, and the hike is not the easiest, there were very few people up there with us. (Though we did meet some truly early birds hiking down as we made our way up!)
The wind was up, and when I stood in the arch and looked up, I felt like I was going to blow out and die. Of course, I knew I wouldn't really, but the sensation was truly terrific--as in terrifying terrific.
I was very proud that my dear husband made it all the way to this view. I was sure he had given up waaaay back there. But no! When we just started heading back, to our surprise there he was! I was so thrilled. He, however, was not thrilled. He was mad because he had not wanted to hike at all, and this hike was long and up hill and no one had waited for him and we had all the water.
Really though, once he got around the corner and to the arch and had a rest, his grumpiness faded a little. And because of the remarkableness of the park, he hiked some more and was even caught smiling!
We spent a full day in the park, wandering among the arches and rock formations. We were super lucky as clouds rolled in all day, sometimes sprinkling us with rain (which seems to evaporate as soon as it touches earth), so we kept cool in what would otherwise have been crushing heat.
|Petroglyphs hammered into the rock by Native peoples around 1600. See the people on horseback?|
|Is that Parade of Elephants there on the left?|
|The enormity of South Window|
|Clouds rolling in here over North Window|
|Picture from my collapsed state in the shade. What happened to those clouds?|
One of the young people is missing from this photo because he was hunting around for snakes. The only snake we saw that day was on a man from England's phone. He captured a picture of a big gopher snake as it crossed the car park.