Day 32: The Great Basin

We continue to be in awe of the majesty and just plain ole horror of the west in the summer. So very hot, so very mountainous. How did the Oregon/Calif/Mormon Trail pioneers DO this? We find ourselves tonight in Salt Lake City--the destination of the Mormon Trail pioneers.

Today was a huge driving day for us--and a very hot day, to boot. Poor Nick got car sick today for the first time. Not sure if it was the heat, the new food we bought, the water from the campground, etc., etc. But he's on the mend tonight, thank goodness. Fun with carpet cleaners, though.

This morning brought beauty at the northern Colorado campground:



Then a hoot of a 2-hour detour to Dinosaur National Monument, where more intact skulls and skeletons have been found in the U.S. than anywhere else. SOOO hot, though. We just dashed out for the occasional photo of scenery AND petroglyphs (carved approximately 1000 years ago):



Here's the formation they call Elephant's Toes:



And here, of course, are the eponymous critters of the park:




And then there was the monsoon (remnant of Dolly?) we drove through today that almost pushed us off the road unexpectedly with its gale force winds:



We are now in a motel-of-last-resort tonight--a Motel 6 by the Salt Lake City airport. We learned that the police in the parking lot for the last few hours are guarding a room (blocked off by police tape) where they arrested 2 wanted murderers from California earlier in the day. Neat. We know how to pick the motels! (All the other motels that took dogs were booked, FYI.) Here's the article.

I decided against taking a photo of the police or the ABC News truck across the street...

Tomorrow brings a most welcome return to the Pacific time zone and CaliforNYyay. It's going to be a long drive for us--some 550 miles to Truckee--but worth it. I expect to listen to a lot of podcasts because the Great Salt Desert puts Lisa into a sleep coma. She'll get the reins after Wells or Elko, NV. I may have to play a few hands of $2 blackjack as a reward for driving across that nasty stretch of desert! We'll see.

Good night! Sleep tight, now that the murderers are caught.

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