Sunday, October 26, 2014

Carbon County

I love walking ghost towns.
From the piles of coal, to the metal vents poking up out of the ground, to the bits of pottery and blue glass.

I love the treacherous looking (and so inviting, to me) bridges, and I adore the sharp, wickedly dangerous pieces of twisted, broken metal.

I love the old geezer flashes of imagery I get, and I love coming home, and researching what I've just seen.  Was that building a bank?  What did they mine, here?  Was that a water tower, a coal bin, or something else?  And always, always, "What happened here?"

It doesn't matter that many of them were from a mere hundred years ago.
One hundred years is a very recent past.  The American West - the old west - however, is worlds away.
I love the Pony Express markers out in the middle of nowhere, and I love stagecoach station sites.  I love the rugged, tiny graveyards, and I love the sinister, historical stories.

We read signs about how this was a lookout for Butch Cassidy's gang, and my husband tells stories of "Here is where Butch Cassidy robbed the train, and took the payroll."
Hundreds of years ago, surely.  A thousand, maybe.

I'm aware that it's not all fame and glory (of the notorious kind), but it's also the imagery of the prairie skirts and shotguns that I wonder at... the rough hands that farmed this rocky soil.
It's hard to see those things in the city, when there are layers and layers of glass buildings, billboards, and neon signs flashing at you.

But getting out into the quiet, you can hear the miners' steps and smell the coal on their dirty faces, and see the bleak in their eyes.

Stumbling over rough ground and crumbling foundations is my way of studying and learning history.
I'll not be trading it.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Moab : Bones and Tracks

An outdoor museum.....

and dinosaur tracks.

Gotta love Moab.


We like museums. You prob'ly know that.
For our third day, the children said "The museum!".
And so it was.

Museum of Moab.
Uranium mines.

John Wayne paraphernalia.

Old player piano.

Maize grinding.

Dinosaur eggs.

Utah raptor leg.

Butch Cassidy photo.

Pretty cool putting many of the pieces of our trip together!

Roadtrippping : Moab, Part II

Waking up to towering, glowing red cliffs is pretty remarkable.

Now let's go play.

Life in Moab is good.

Roadtripping : Moab

When we talked about our list, as a family, of things we wanted to do--late summer, early fall things... things we can't do without things....Moab was among them.  "Moab!" definitively say the children.

So Moab it is.

Two hundred forty miles south of home.
There's a lot of living in that two hundred miles.

A lot of tromping, a lot of "where's the atlas?" and "let's see.... this dirt road goes up towards here..."... a lot of investigating.  That's my kind of adventuring.

Sego, Utah.  Ghost town.

Where some of the graffiti is from the Archaic period...7,000bce.


I love this life of mine--this life of ours.  Have I mentioned it?

And so.  We travel eagerly on down the road.
Any road, really.

Fremont petroglyphs

Thompson Springs, Utah.

Which is a town like so many others.... mining... then a major train stop (with a station and hotels, even).... then the highway bypassed it, and the passenger train changed its stop to a different town.

Now, though there are a very few residents (strange, that people still live here) - 28, at last count - the town is definitely ruled by its ghosts.

Eventually we made it to Town,
and then to our cabin.

Hello, Moab.  So nice to see you, again.