Okay, we are walking down the trail in Arches National Park, and I hear, “Ty, look out for that falling rock!” THUD… What the heck? Where did that rock come from? (Just kidding, but it makes for a great gag photo, don’t you think? What do you mean, I have a strange sense of humor? I am insulted…)
This is our second visit to Moab, Utah, and we are again awe-struck by the raw beauty of the sandstone arches and palisades here. It’s been awhile since we’ve had flowers in the blog, and as you are aware, I don’t know my plants very well. But I do recognize beauty, and this puff ball looking specimen caught my eye, and I asked My Lovely Bride to photograph it. One of the advantages of being retired is that we have plenty of time to “stop and smell the roses” and not have to worry (so much, anyway) about keeping to a schedule.
We found these pretty orange flowers along the same trail. They are living in a very sandy area about 50 yards from a stream, but you wonder how they get enough water to survive. Temperatures today are in the high 90s, and will rise another 10-20 degrees over the next month, although it will drop into the 60s and 70s overnight. Most of the local critters are nocturnal, finding a hole or a big rock to hide under during the brutally hot part of the day. The young kids out camping in tents can rough it in the heat, but us more mature adults opt for Plan B, air conditioning.
We have taken two sunset drives through Arches NP for two reasons: 1. It’s cooler then for our puppies to walk around the view point parking areas (they aren’t allowed on the trails), and 2. the colors are more vivid at sunrise and sunset. (Did I hear someone ask, “Ty, why don’t you get up early and be out there for sunrise?” The answer: “Elementary, My Dear, sunrise is at 0554, before 6:00 AM civilian time, and no one with any common sense is up then.”)
Particularly impressive is Balance Rock, a 35,000 ton hunk of sandstone sitting atop a base of mudstone, which erodes 2 or 3 times as fast as the harder sandstone above. It will be a very short time (a few decades, perhaps) before Balance Rock falls to the ground atop the “melting” base that supports it today.