09 November 2008
MT. CARMEL MR. TOAD'S WILD RIDE
This was our last day for exploring around "color country". We need to be on our way to Tucson. So, for our final adventure we took the drive out Mt. Carmel Highway and boy it was a beauty.
The rock formations in this part of the park are the best yet. Unfortunately, I didn't get any acceptable shots of the individual rocks. For some reason they look just great to my eye but they seem to lose something in translation to pixels. Another reason to spend a winter here. I might could figure out how to capture these clever little sculptures in an appealing way. But, some of the landscapes turned out mighty fine even if I do say so myself. :)
The drive up this canyon is like the Mr. Toad ride at Disneyland. It's narrow and windy. At one point there is an unlighted tunnel that runs 1.1 miles into the mountain. If you are claustrophobic you'll have fun with this one. The tunnel is so small they have to stop traffic to let tour buses go through. It's so dark they have signs telling you to remove your sunglasses before entering. I imagine in the summer this is a real log jam but at this time of year it was a breeze.
You may wonder what the excitement over the above photo is about. It's just one of my "things". The sage set against the azure sky was just awesomely beautiful to me. It seems to me that there is beautiful art being made no matter where you look in nature. We humans often get all impressed with our art making. But, in my opinion, we are simply posers. Mother Nature is the only true artist.
Once you leave the park the landscape is still pretty interesting but in a rural way. The windmill above is made of wood and is part of a windmill well pump. It seemed an elegant structure and the wheel was especially alluring.
And, we came across this old covered carriage along the road. We traveled all the way out to Hwy 89 and had intended to go up to 14 and over to Cedar City but we'd dawdled so long on the Mt. Carmel Highway we just went up the road a piece. But, again it looked like fine fodder for the photographer. There was all kinds of interesting rural subjects to try and capture. So much to do. So little time. We'll spend more time here on our next visit that's a for sure.
So we bid fond farewell to Zion National Park and environs and look ahead to the next stop.
You can see all of our trip so far in high resolution at TRIP GALLERY.
Ciao for now,
Koty & Kinsey