Utah 2005

Diary of Linda, Mollie, Meggie, and my RV trip to Utah, May 2005

5/3/05 Left at 8:00 a.m. for Las Vegas. We arrived around 3:30 p.m. at the Silverton RV Park. They raised the rates to $39 which I consider to be outrageous, so we will be looking for new location in the future. Had dinner at the Sunset Grill.

5/4/05 Got going around 10:00 a.m. Stopped at the Virgin River SP to run Meggie near the river. The river was raging from the spring run off, so I kept Meggie from wading out in the water too far. The water must have really been raging at the Narrows in Zion NP. Arrived in Richfield, UT around 4:00 p.m. We checked into the KOA which was very green with several blooming fruit trees. Walked Meggie in a field owned by Snow College.

5/5/05 Left about 10:00 a.m. for Green River. Stopped on top of the San Rafael Swell to view the beautiful rock formations and to snap a few photos. We arrived in Green River at 1:00 p.m. and stopped at Ray’s Bar and Grill for hamburgers. We then drove north about 9 miles to a BLM Camp ground on the Green River called Swasey Rapids. We found a beautiful site right on the river next to the roaring rapids, lots of cottonwood trees, and a beautiful view of Russell Butte, and many other huge rock formations. This is one of the best camp sites I have ever had and best of all it was free. We drove into Green River at 7:00 p.m. and met Mollie our niece from Provo Utah. She stayed with us in the 5th wheel sleeping on the living room sofa. Apparently it is quite comfortable.

5/6/05 Got up about 8:00 a.m. Utah time. I made cheese omelets for us all. It was a beautiful sunny morning in the mid 70’s. We got under way about 10:00 a.m. for Nefertiti Rapids which is 8 miles up stream on a very rough dirt road. We could only travel 5- 10 mph. We stopped about 5 miles up steam and did a 2 mile hike into a beautiful green flower adorned canyon with Meggie dog off leash. Got upstream to Nefertiti rapids about 1:00 p.m. Took us another ½ hour to rig the rafts and cast off. The water flow rate was reasonably swift at perhaps 4-5 mph. The first rapids was a strong class 2 and lots of fun. The next two were more exciting, especially a converging rapid which had 3’-4’ high waves. About half way the wind started blowing upstream like a gale. The last two rapids were very invigorating and Mollie and I were both happy that we did this run. The run took us just under 3 hours. Got the boats cleaned up and put away. We had left over pizza and a salad for dinner.

5/7/05 It rained part of the previous night and a couple hours into the morning. We decided to move our campsite to Moab. We stayed at the Arch View RV Park campground in Moab. It was an excellent full amenities RV Park located at hwy 191 and the Colorado river road 328. We drove into Arches NP and did the very beautiful and strenuous Delicate Arch hike. Linda made it within 30 yards of the top but would not go the final distance because of Vertigo. The hike was 4.2 miles round trip with 740’ elevation rise. Much of the trail was on slick rock/petrified sand dunes. Its in the top 15 best hikes I have ever done. We had barbecued filet mignon steaks for dinner that night. Watched NBA playoffs on satellite TV and crashed early.

5/8/05 Had breakfast early and drove to Hittle Bottom, the put in point on the Colorado River Daily for Mollie and my rafting trip. We scouted most rapids on the way up and decided to do only a 6 mile run putting out at Rocky Beach on Ida Gulch Creek. It was a perfect sunny day in the low 70’s with little wind. It was one of the most beautiful runs I have ever taken on a river. This is the home of countless western movies, so all of the red rock formations looked pleasantly familiar. The river was swift between 4 – 6 mph with several sandy beaches and two Dude Ranches. The rapids where as advertised, lots of class 2’s and a few easy class 3’s. Only at the put out rapids did I feel there was chance of a flip. Mollie and I both enjoyed this run allot and looked forward to another run tomorrow perhaps with Linda and Meggie as passengers.

5/9/05 We could not talk Linda into rafting, so we all decided to do the Fisher Towers hike. It was about 4.5 miles round trip with 800’ of elevation. It was BLM land so Meggie dog was allowed to go. I was concerned about the drop offs on the trail but Meggie dog seemed to know they were dangerous and would not go to close to the edge. The vegetation and flowers were at their peak. The unbelievable steep spire rock formations along with excellent timing for vegetation, rated this hike a 10 for beauty. For Linda the hike was right on the edge, for exposure. Eventually after 1-1/2 hours and 2 miles, in we did turn back because of a very narrow trail and a steep drop off on the right edge. We observed some rock climbers while hiking, which put us in awe and gave us much entertainment while we climbed. Returned back to trail head and had a picnic lunch. Drove back to camp in Moab. Said goodbye to Mollie. Both Linda and I really enjoyed our 4 days with Mollie doing hiking and rafting. Hope to do it again next year.

5/10/05 Drove from Moab to Bluff, Utah about 100 miles. Then drove to Gooseneck SP where we set up the 5th wheel right on the edge of the cliff overlooking the river 1,000’ below. The wind was kicking up to 60 mph gust which really freaked out Linda and Meggie. We had lunch and stayed about 2 hours at which time the wind also made me nervous. We packed up and returned back to Bluff. We went to Sand Island camp ground which is the put-in beach for the San Juan River rafting trips out of Bluff. Found a nice site right on the river which also had some nice low Cottonwood trees to protect us from the wind.

5/11/05 We got up at 6:45 a.m., had breakfast and took Meggie for a nice long walk. Drove to Wild River Expeditions rafting company and signed the waiver forms for the daily trip from Bluff to Mexican Hat. Was on the river by 9:00 a.m. Our guide was Marcos, a Navajo Indian. Our boat was a oar driven 16’ non bailing raft with a steel frame, a very stable craft. The first ½ of the day had no rapids. We stopped to visit some Indian petroglyphs about a ½ mile from the river. Next stop was a well preserved Anasazi Ruin, about a 1 mile hike from the river. We were able to climb to and walk right into the structures. We then walked another ½ mile to look at Comb Ridge, a huge uplift in the Four Corners area with a recessed center. We were able to see geological layers that dated back 310 million years. Our young guide, although not a geologist, had spent much time studying and memorizing the geology of the area. We then had a nice lunch all prepared by the guide. Now we entered a long 10 mile canyon that had lots of rapids. Most were called sand rapids which are caused by sand wave formations on the bottom of the river bed. We encountered one large class 3 rapid that would have been very difficult in my 14’ Soar. I got drenched and was cold the rest of the trip. I considered this rapid to be a class 4 although it could be cheated on river left. The canyon had lots of class 2 and easy 3 rapids the rest of the way to take out. The wind got stronger so the guide employed a 8 HP engine to help him make his put out time schedule. The huge rock in the form of a Mexican Hat at put out could not be missed. We arrived home at 5:30 p.m. The trip cost us $134 each. I may apply for a permit next year and spend two nights and three days doing this beautiful 26 mile stretch of river. All river left is Navaho land and a camping permit is required from the BOA. The river and the river right is all BLM land and a river permit is required from the BLM office in Monticelo, UT.

5/12/05 Felt terrible today with exacerbated MS symptoms caused by yesterdays activity and chill I got from the raft trip. Stayed in the trailer until noon. We then drove to Comb Ridge and Butler Wash were we had a nice hike with Meggie and then ate lunch on the trail. Next we decided to drive through the Valley of the Gods on a 17 mile gravel road. It was very scenic and we stopped in the middle for another hike with Meggie. We saw a Bed & Breakfast out there in the middle of no where. Apparently all of their power came from solar or wind powered devices. Got back at 4:00 p.m. and did some more resting while Linda used the computer for solitaire. Our solar panel electrical system seems to be keeping the batteries charged even using the TV and computer 3-5 hours per day. Made shrimp in garlic butter, spinach, and steamed rice for dinner.

5/13/05 Left Sand Island at 9:00 a.m. Drove south on hwy 163 through the Navajo Nation and through Monument Valley. Arrived in Flagstaff about 2:00 a.m. and checked into the 2003 US award winning J&H RV Park. We called Bruce & Beverly Roberts in Prescott, AZ but found out that they were on the road in California on their way to a wedding, so we won’t see them this trip. Relaxed the rest of the day and then went out for dinner to the Horsemen Lodge which turned out to be very good. I had a combo beef and pork rib dinner.

5/14/05 Left about 10:00 a.m. for Laughlin Nevada. Arrived about 1:00 p.m. and checked into the Riverside Casino RV Park. About 2:00 p.m. we decided to have a very early dinner at Colorado Belle Casino Seafood Restaurant. It was at least a mile plus walk down river to it and Linda protested violently as she gets real testy when hungry. In the end she like her seafood chowder and I loved my dozen steamed oysters, garlic bread, and Chardonnay wine. I then played blackjack for about 3 hours wining $35. Linda played penny slots for 4-5 hours loosing about $40. I bought a nice German Chocolate cake desert home to the trailer and watched the NBA finals on satellite TV.

5/15/05 Had breakfast in the trailer and got on the road by 7:00 a.m. Arrived home in San Diego around 2:30 p.m.

Last updated on February 6, 2019