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  1. #31

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    Monday 18th Sept

    We had a long drive ahead as our next destination was Moab and we wanted to see Monument Valley and Gooseneck State Park en route so after a quick stop for a Mc Breakfast in Page we set off early (early for us anyway) and were on the road by 9.30.

    I was pretty tired on this day I think the Arizona Heat was making me weary so by the time we arrived at Monument Valley mid afternoon I felt in need of a pick me up. We went into the view hotel for a bite to eat and some strong coffee for me before taking the scenic drive around the Valley.

    Everyday on this trip we felt we had seen unbeatable sights and yet it continued to amaze us. I wish I had better descriptive powers but this place is amazing. The dirt road is an adventure in itself and with hindsight we probably shouldnít have chanced it in our hire car but thankfully the Rogue suspension held up well and I wonít tell Alamo if you donít.

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    It was incredibly hot and dusty but there was a calmness about the place that was almost spiritual. We loved it and wanted to stay for sunset but knew if we did stay it would mean a long dark drive ahead so we headed on to our next stop at Gooseneck passing Mexican Hat on the way.

  2. #32

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    Gooseneck proved to be every bit as scenic as we remembered from seeing it in Thelma and Louise and we were very pleased to have made it there during daylight hours.

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    Next stop was Dukes restaurant in Bluff Utah where we enjoyed a slap up dinner and surprised the drinks waiter by asking for coke floats instead of wine with our meals. Feeling full and content we headed back out onto the road arriving in Moab just before 10pm. It had been a long day and we were both too tired to even consider a wander round the town so we checked into our hotel and hit the hay

  3. #33

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    Tues 19th Sept

    Having arrived pretty late at our hotel in Moab we hadn’t given ourselves any time to explore the town so this morning we made a big mistake and dilly dallied wandering up the Main Street and taking our time over breakfast. Then we drove to Canyonlands and because it was so stunning we spent far more time there than we had intended which meant by the time we arrived at the gates of Arches National Park (the reason for our coming to Moab) it was already 4pm. Not realising beforehand that the park would close at 7 we had planned to follow the trail up to Delicate arch and catch the sunset there. Sadly it was not to be, arriving at the Jack Wolfe ranch at 5.30 the rangers were standing guard on the start of the trail and turning people away on the basis that unless you could confirm your ability to get up the trail and back in an hour in 100 degree heat you should not start.

    Although we were disappointed we still loved the park (both of them in fact) and we squeezed in as much sightseeing as we could in the time we had left to us. It was a hectic day but with hindsight we should have skipped the shops and made an earlier start.

    The island in the sky at Canyonlands was well worth seeing though (I had only added it to the plan after receiving advice to do so on this forum) and we loved the views and lack of crowds.

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    As always we took 100’s of photo’s but again they cannot adequately capture the vastness of the beauty of our surroundings. Between us we have over 5000 pics from the trip and I still haven’t tired of looking through them since returning home.

    We had our evening meal at the Moab diner we once again we indulged ourselves with coke floats as a treat and we had a great chat with some bikers from Tennessee who were in the middle of a 4 month cross country adventure. We envied them the luxury of time as we were feeling a little sad that our much longed for trip was ever closer to its end. After a long long soak in the tub I fell exhausted into my bed knowing a long drive back to Colorado was scheduled for the next day.

  4. #34

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    Weds 20th Sept

    We had been advised to take the old I-28 out of Moab and wow that proved to be great guidance. What a scenic drive that was. We had the road pretty much to ourselves and it was so lovely just cruising along by the river that we spent several hours travelling about 40 miles. We were due to be in Keystone Colorado that evening for an overnight stop en route to Denver airport. We were going to be staying at River Run ski resort which had been a last minute change of plan because we felt our original destination of Glenwood Springs was just a little too far from Denver for us to be sure of making our noon flight.

    We decided to stop in Glenwood Springs anyway and maybe have our lunch there but first we drove though the old town of Cisco which was pretty eerie and desolate.

    Glenwood Springs had a lot of roadworks going on and there was a huge diversion snarling up the traffic so we gave it a miss and drove on right through to Keystone. We arrived around 5pm and after some confusion as to where the check in was (being out of season the main lodge was closed and the town was empty) we managed to get into our condo by 6.

    It was a little spooky being there all alone but it was a lovely condo with a bedroom each, huge balcony and delightful lake view. We had seen a road sign indicating Loveland pass was nearby so we jumped back in the car and took a ride to the summit before heading back down to Keystone and having a great dinner at the Red River Saloon which was one of the few places that remained open. After dinner we had the monumental task of emptying the car and packing all of our souvenirs and stuff into our bags ready for the trip back to London next day. It wasn’t easy - I had bought so many tee shirts I ended up having to leave all my toiletries and even some clothes behind and even then it took both of us sitting on my case to get it zipped up.

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  5. #35

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    Thurs 21st Sept

    The dream is over and itís time to go home. We were up at 5.30am and on the road by 6. We had to be at Denver airport by 10 for our noon flight to JFK in New York where we would transfer to our flight to London arriving in Heathrow early Friday morning. Everything went well and we made great time until we approached Denver when it all slowed down and we encountered some serious traffic jams which meant we didnít arrive at Alamo to return the car until 10.10am. We said our goodbyes to the Rogue which we had affectionately named Judy / Sally after the lady at Alamo who had greeted us and managed our booking when we had arrived 3 weeks earlier. As she was handing over the keys she had said ď if you are happy with my service my name is JudyĒ then she flipped over her name badge and said ď if you didnít like it, my name is SallyĒ

    Well it turned out that we had been very happy with the car and we were sorry to hand it back, I hope that whoever is driving it now enjoys the experience as much as we did.

    The shuttle to the airport was right on time and we were checked in and through security by 11am. The flight was slightly delayed which meant a real race through Kennedy from terminal 2 to terminal 4 in order to make our connection but before we knew it we were airborne again and the stewardess was offering us chicken or beef.

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    Goodbye USA it was a real pleasure and we shall be counting the days (and the pennies) until the next time.

    Total cost of this trip inclusive of all flights, hotels, the car, petrol and spending money was about £4000 (each) and worth every penny. Priceless in terms of memories made and the experiences we had.

  6. #36

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    Thanks Dave, Michael and All on here. Your help and advice throughout is much appreciated.

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,740

    Default Thank you.

    And a big THANK YOU to you for sharing your adventure with us, I really enjoyed following your report. It helps to keep me sane while waiting to cross the pond for our next big adventure !

    Dave.

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