On Vegas to Denver


The morning after the trip orientation in Las Vegas, we boarded the bus. We stopped about every 90 minutes for things like restrooms, snacks, sights, or lunch. The first stop was quite the surprise – WalMart. It opened the eyes of some in the foreign contingent.

Williams, Arizona (for first lunch stop) is a small town located on US Route 66. It’s a gateway stop for many going to Grand Canyon, and also serves as the depot for the Grand Canyon Railroad, which takes visitors to the south rim.

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We overnighted at Grand Canyon National Park. It’s a spectacular place and much larger than most ever imagine: 277 miles (446 km) long, about 1 mile (1.6 km) deep, average width is 10 miles (16 km) … and to think visitors only see a small portion of the canyon.

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Monument Valley is an icon, but not a national park because it is located on Navajo land – therefore the name Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park. Isolated red (from exposed iron oxide) mesas and buttes formed by erosion create the image that many have about the west. Located along the Arizona-Utah border, this iconic landscape served as the backdrop to many movie westerns and television commercials.

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Arches National Park is located in eastern Utah near Moab. Formed by geologic forces wrinkling, folding, and pushing the sandstone upward millions of years ago, wind and water erosion created over 2,000 arches and windows, plus numerous pinnacles, spires, and shapes that gives the park its distinct feel. Every geologic feature has a unique geologic story to tell.

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After an evening in Moab, the next day was a long-day of riding. The Western Slope is Colorado’s wine region, so we had lunch at a winery. The afternoon was traveling through the Rockies for an overnight in downtown Denver before a long day of riding to South Dakota.

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For other posts about this trip, click here or see (in the right sidebar) Categories > Travel > Western US National Parks Tour

Next Post: South Dakota and to the West

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On Arches

Arches can be a noun, adjectives, or verb

Arches are something that curves

Arches span an opening

Arches can be a buttress, casita, cornice, fanlight, garret, lintel, parapet, pilaster, plinth, angle, arc, arch, bend, bow, crook, inflection, turn wind, curl, and more

Arches can be a principal, chief, mischievous, or saucy

Arches can be deal with archery, architecture, and even be archaic

Arches are commonly associated with human anatomy as fingerprints, the spine, Aorta, and feet

Arches can describe an action or a structure

Arches can span, vault, resist, intersect, rest, and support

Arches can be overbearing, overriding, paramount, primary, dominant, foremost, chief, and more

Arches are associated with gateways, buildings, architecture, national parks, landmarks, St. Louis, and McDonald’s

Enjoy these photos of arches from my trip to Italy. Do you have a favorite?

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Leading Home (as per Elyse)

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Arch and the door

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The passageway

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The ever-flowing water source

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The remaining old city gate

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The cathedral

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The stairs

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The Leaning Tower through the gate