Saturday, September 24, 2016

Day 9 - In route to Capitol Reef National Park via Escalante

We broke camp and got things in order slowly.  Today was a no rush day with a bit of driving, lots of scenery and an expected destination of Torrey, Utah, the entrance to Capitol Reef Nat'l Park.  We have acquaintances in Torrey we hope to plan a short visit to say hello.

We stopped in Bryce for fuel and propane then continued east along Scenic Byway 12.  The route proved its name in magnificent vistas.  We stopped at the Anastasi State Park Museum and wandered around there for a while.  After lunch we headed into the Escalante region of the Grand Staircase area.  The rock formations, canyons, and windy road were stunningly impressive.  The canyons looked like someone has poured mild chocolate over the rocks.  The flows were smooth, dotted with Utah Juniper trees.  We mastered the summit of several passes reaching 10,000' a few times.  The air was pure and the sun gleamed. Clouds in the distance warned us of more rain to come.

We began looking for a spot to park in the National Forest only to find that most of the campgrounds were closed or the sites were limited to vehicles no more than 20 feet.  That put our 45' rig out of bounds.  Eventually we reached Torrey in the late afternoon.  After three stops and spotty wifi we found a spot in an overflow area of one last RV resort heading north out of town.  Sometime during the drive we lost the dome to one of our skylights. started to rain.  A lot of rain.  And a lot of water in the van.  We mustered a quick fix with a plastic bag and some duck tape and settled in for the night.

It was a rough night with the van rocking back and forth, the wind howling, and the torrents of rain plummeting down.  Our phones beeped weather advisories and a tornado touched down in the town we had slept the night before.  It was a long night.

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