Sunday, May 2, 2010

Vermillion Cliffs

As you could tell by reading yesterday's blog, we spent all day yesterday out in the area of the Vermillion Cliffs in Arizona. While we were looking for condors, we also saw some neat flowers as well as some more gorgeous scenery. This dwarf lupine is much shorter than what we are used to seeing in the NW.

I don't care where you drive in southern Utah or the northwest corner of Arizona, you come upon incredible scenery. The multiple layers of ancient oceans make for gorgeous colors.

This is Desert Milkweed (Asclepias erosa) that we found growing in a sandy wash along the road. We were at over 5000 feet elevation.

And then this one I found as I walked out into the pasture near the Observation Kiosk while we were waiting for the condors to show. I saw the one in the second picture first and it wasn't until I saw this one that was in bloom that I began to get a clue to what it was. It's a Hairy Prairie-Clover (Dalea mollis).

These are the Vermillion Cliffs. They are the eroding edge of Paria Plateau. The condors appeared from over the plateau and spiraled down into their nests in the cliffs in that upper band of rock.

Today was another cold and SNOWY day. As we were hitching up the toad and checking the turn signals and brake lights, we could see ugly black clouds over the hills. We had a couple of sprinkles of rain even though we were actually in the sunshine. We took Interstate 15 north towards Fillmore, Utah where we are staying at Wagons West RV Park. We ran into several snow squalls on the way in between intervals of sunshine. The snow was heavy enough at one point that we pulled into a rest area to wait it out.

After yesterday's long drive and the move this morning, we were more than ready to settle in for a quiet afternoon and evening. We were able to watch the last disappointing innings of the Mariner game as well.

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