Posts tagged: Dead Horse Point State Park

Our Time In Moab – Part 4

By , May 23, 2010 10:56 pm

Fisher Towers – Dead Horse Point – Sand Flats

We spent a few more days working, but managed to squeak in a few more outings. 

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We found a gully that was vehicle accessible and ran that for a bit before turning back (yes, it was a marked trail, I was being environmentally conscious), then headed to Fisher Towers to check it out.

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Fisher Towers was pretty neat because it had some cool rock formations, but the entire area around Moab was also cool because of the varieties of life in such an inhospitable environment.  Take this tree, as an example:

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In black and white or color, it looks dead.  It’s not!  These trees pretty much all look like they’re rotting or completely dead, but they just sacrifice limbs one by one until they get enough water to start growing again.  In Arches National Parks we saw several that at least looked “half alive”.

IMG_0496Note: Lizard included just because I like them, although we did take that shot at Fisher Tower.  Photographic purists, I wholeheartedly admit that I heavily manipulated the lizard and tree pictures… If I post pictures and they ever show even partly with black and white, that means the gloves came off and I modified the snot out of them.

Later that evening I went back to Sand Flats Recreation Area to take some shots of the rocks at sunset.  I didn’t get quite the effect I was hoping for because a batch of clouds moved in right before the sun went down, but I did manage to get some decent shots.  I also took the tripod and had it set up to take a some time lapse shots too, which also didn’t work quite the way I’d hoped due to the clouds messing up the last half of the shots.  Ah well, some other time, perhaps. 😉

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The following day we went up to Dead Horse Point State Park.  It’s a small park, so it doesn’t take much time to appreciate.  Honestly, we were a bit put out at having to pay $10 for such a small park, but I guess the views are worth it and they know it (several people we met in Moab said it was a spot we had to go see).

IMG_2639There are a few different versions of how the park got its name.  The two most prominent have to do with the park being on a mesa with a very narrow “neck” to get to it.  Cowboys would herd wild horses up to the mesa and then just build a short fence across the neck to keep them penned in.  The cowboys would then pick the ones they wanted for whatever task at the time and leave the rest up on the mesa.  Someone was assigned the job of hauling water up there every few days, because there’s none occurring naturally on the mesa.  At some point, someone forgot, or got drunk, or something (this is where the stories all take different turns).  Regardless, the horses ran out of water and either died on the mesa, or jumped off (and died) trying to get to the Colorado River below.

What we found most interesting was due to our previous travels.  We’d been at the Colorado River on the boat trip, looking up.  Prior to that, we ran Potash Road looking up and down.  Now we were at the mesa above Potash looking down and seeing the whole enchilada. Below are the evaporation ponds from the salt company.

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The portion of trail in the next shot is where we parked and saw the film crew on Potash Road at “Thelma and Louise Point”.

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Finally, the road below and to the right of Dasy is right before Shafer Canyon and the border of Canyonlands National Park.

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It really hit home with us just how BIG this place is when we were able to see just this one little piece from all three angles.  This is just one tiny little area around Moab.  A person could spend a lifetime exploring just one National Park here and still not be able to really experience even half of it!

Note: We’re almost done with Moab posts… I think I have just one more.  Sorry it’s taking so long and it just seems to keep going on, but the area around Moab really is incredible!  I don’t want to cut out any more than I have to.  Next should be our last outing, the Needles section of Canyonlands National Park.

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