Becky and Hrold at the entrance of Arches National Park.
Well after a not-so-good night of sleep (I awoke at 4 and had trouble going back to sleep), we got up, showered and went to breakfast, which wasn’t half bad. Following breakfast, we packed up all of our stuff, dragged it down to the car, and after loading the car, we were ready for day two of our adventure.
Today, our destination was Green River, Utah. You need to keep in mind that neither of us have been to Green River and all we knew about the town and the place where we were to stay was what we saw on the Internet. At any rate, our destination was two hours from Grand Junction and off we went after stopping first at the liquor store so we could freshen up on libations. You never know if Utah is given to happy hours. But after a delightful conversation with the owner of the liquor store, we set out for Green River and eventually, Arches National Park.
I just want to say a word about people. I like people and I also believe that most people, if given an opportunity, are decent, friendly people. From the beginning of our trip, every time we stopped somewhere or talked to anyone along the way, Becky would later comment, “boy they were sure nice,” which validated my thoughts about people in general. Their kindness was something that amazed both of us and to tell the truth, seems to be something we encounter no matter what our travel destination may be.
When we arrived at Green River, it was not what we expected. Outside a few truck stops, a great number of the buildings were closed and many of the homes appeared to be…well…in need of repair. When we came to the town, we pulled over and tried to put our motel’s address into the car’s GPS. At first, it didn’t seem to know the address, but we persisted. Finally, it registered an address and as we followed the instructions, the GPS took us out of town. “I’m glad we’re getting out of this hell hole,” Becky exclaimed. But as we started into the nothingness of the Utah desert, we both looked at each other and said, “This can’t be right.” Again, we pulled over and Becky put the address into her phone and once again put it into the car’s GPS. This time, the car and the phone agreed. We turned around and headed back to Green River. Strangely, our entrance into the town seemed different this time, and as we came to the place where we were staying, the first thing we saw was this palatial motel next to it. “Is this it?” we wondered. No, its name was different. We looked around and below the sign of a restaurant, next to the palatial motel, was the name of the place we were staying. “Do you think it is too late to cancel?” Becky asked. We decided to take our chances. The persons we talked to were really nice and they had just finished cleaning our room, so we were able to check in early. It wasn’t palatial but it was very nice, very clean and very comfortable with a large picture window overlooking the Green River, which is why we selected this place—we then remembered—in the first place.
What we thought was a restaurant turned out to be where we were staying. Notice the smaller sign on the bottom. That is the name of the motel.
The room was nice, and we tried to sit outside and enjoy the scenery (see image below), but the huge mosquitoes drove us in.
The Green River as seen from our motel room.
After lunch in our room, we relaxed a bit, made some phone calls and decided we would take our first look at the Arches National Park. It was amazing! A photographer could spend a lifetime in that place and still not capture its beauty, its magnitude, and its splendor. As we drove towards the park, I was sticking my camera out of the car window (no, I wasn’t driving) to photograph the magnificent rock formations sculptured out of millions of years of erosion. At one point, Becky pulled the car over so I could take photographs of one of the more interesting formations. But this was a prelude. As magnificent as these views were, they were dwarfed by what we experience=d in the park. We wnt as far as we could in the time allotted, returned to the motel, had a terrific dinner in the restaurant and retired to our room for a nice night’s sleep ending our second day.