Susan’s Travelogue Thursday Thirteen Style


Miss me?

We got home on Monday but between settling back in and the abrupt resumption of real life, I’ve been quiet. Time to change that.

Thirteen Things I did on my Spring Vacation

1. Bumped over the Rocky Mountains in a puddle jumper.

2. Stayed at a four-star resort. You should, too. Amazing food. Better staff.

3. Hauled along a stuffed doberman, the class pet. Took lots of absurd pictures with said doberman that had other vacationers laughing along with us.

4. Visited Arches National Park. There are 17 hikes listed, according to difficulty level, at the Visitor Center. We conquered about 13 of them, including the hardest one in the park.

5. That hardest hike is into the Fiery Furnace area of the park. Yes, it’s as narrow and nerve-testing as the pictures make it look. Yet it was also great fun and I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

6. The highlight, however, happened after we drove our rented Chevy Trailblazer down a very washboarded, unpaved road to the head of the trail. We were headed out to Tower Arch.

7. We sat and had snacks underneath the arch. You can still see where the arch’s discoverer, Alex Higgenbotham (I think that was his name), wrote his name on the wall (but don’t touch!)

8. Tower Arch is masculine and tough. There’s no doubt about it. If you want grace and beauty, try Delicate Arch or Landscape Arch.

9. I loved Double Arch. In fact, the whole windows area is pretty cool.

10. Did you know that the soil is alive? Out in Arches (and in neighboring Canyonlands), it is. Called Biological Soil (this year; it’s had other names in years past, but it’s the same stuff), it’s very cool. And, in places, very hard to see. Don’t step off the marked paths.

11. And did we see others going off-trail! This is how and why I became a conservationist. I don’t understand how people can come to the National Parks and be dazzled by their surroundings, yet show so little respect for something so important. Hello? Don’t you want your grandchildren to be able to see this, too?

12. On our final day in Utah, we drove over to Canyonlands National Park. If you’ve never been there, let me tell you, it’s so big, so vast, so amazing … the Tour Manager and I joked that it’s not real. It’s just a great big painting. I’d love to return and do some serious hiking in there. I’m talking multi-day treks.

13. Our last stop before heading home was Grand Junction, CO. I think I could live there — or so I said until I heard the weather forecast. Snow. In mid-April. Regardless, Grand Junction looked like a great little town. We found a great Mom-and-Pop Mexican restaurant that was open on Easter Sunday, too.

There ya go, boys and girls. Six days distilled into thirteen things. I can’t say I was as easy on my camera… just like my Yellowstone trip last year, 500+ pictures made the editing cut. Not all will go into the album I’m going to make, but most will.

More from Trevor and the rest of the gang in the days ahead.



  1. Adelle Laudan

    April 15, 2009 10:59 pm

    Wow. Sounds like you had an amazing time. Looking forward to the pics when you get them together. Welcome back! Happy T13!

    Adelle Laudan’s last blog post..

  2. Alice Audrey

    April 16, 2009 12:02 am

    Do we get to see any of the doberman pictures?

    Alice Audrey’s last blog post..T13: Thirteen Pieces of Fabric

  3. Willa

    April 16, 2009 12:43 am

    I envy you, you already enjoy your Spring while we still have a cold weather here. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Thursday 13

    Willa’s last blog post..Thursday Thirteen

  4. Thorne

    April 16, 2009 1:17 am

    What a great trip!! Beautiful!
    Happy TT.

    Thorne’s last blog post..Recycled Materials for Art Mosaics

  5. Thomma Lyn

    April 16, 2009 2:17 am

    Oh, it sounds like a fabulous time! I’m glad you got to get in lots of good hiking, and I don’t blame you for not being easy on your camera — I’m rough on mine, too! ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. Shelley Munro

    April 16, 2009 3:00 am

    It sounds like you had a great time, Susan. I can’t believe the way people don’t respect their surroundings either. USA has some awesome National Parks. I’ve visited both Arches and Canyonlands. Red rock country ๐Ÿ™‚

    Shelley Munro’s last blog post..April 2009

  7. Nicholas

    April 16, 2009 3:09 am

    Sounds wonderful! I envy you.

  8. Robin

    April 16, 2009 6:14 am

    Sounds beautiful. Maybe someday I’ll make it out there…

    Robin’s last blog post..Soft-shelled sea turtles and nutria at Nahal Alexander

  9. Krissy

    April 16, 2009 6:32 am

    Lovely photos! The trip sounds like it was a winner. Happy Thursday!

    Thursday 13 – edition 3
    Weekly Plans 4/13-4/20

    Krissy’s last blog post..Thursday 13 – edition 3

  10. Hootin' Anni

    April 16, 2009 7:04 am

    I lived in Colorado for over 40 years, and I must say that the Western Slope [Grand Junction] is a lot milder in winter than the Eastern Slope [where I lived, Denver]

    My 13 is posted….all flowers in our yard, done in a collage for you. Drop by if you can find time. Happy Thursday.

    Hootin’ Anni’s last blog post..

  11. Kristi

    April 16, 2009 8:19 am

    That area is beautiful, isn’t it? Man, now I need to plan another trip out that way! ๐Ÿ™‚ Happy TT!

    Kristi’s last blog post..Thursday 13 – All About Weddings!

  12. Harriet

    April 16, 2009 8:49 am

    Sounds like a great spring break.

    Harriet’s last blog post..APRIL IS TELL ‘EM YOU’RE A FAN MONTH!

  13. Brenda

    April 16, 2009 10:41 am

    Sounds like a great trip! What fun.

    Brenda’s last blog post..A Jagged Look at Lightning 2 (Answers)

  14. Sarah @ TM2TS

    April 16, 2009 12:16 pm

    I read the part about the dog and thought it said you got “bit” by the dog. I was all like “ouch” until I re-read! XD

    T13 – 54th Edition
    Weekly Plans: Come join in the fun

    Sarah @ TM2TS’s last blog post..Sharing what is shared with me

  15. Zorlone

    April 16, 2009 12:41 pm

    Looks like 13 exciting activities! Good thing you decided to go on a break, lot’s new stories to tell. hehehe.

    When will the new header appear?

    Just asking… take all the time you need. This is still a great site to visit.


    Zorlone’s last blog post..Ancient Cities

  16. Zorlone

    April 16, 2009 12:54 pm

    I have been itching to ask about it since you left! I used your EC id as my first commenter in one of my posts. I wanted to make a link for your header, there wasn’t any. hehehe.


    Zorlone’s last blog post..Ancient Cities

  17. Janet

    April 16, 2009 1:06 pm

    taxidermy stuffed or toy animal stuffed? Your vacation sounds amazing!

  18. Lissa

    April 16, 2009 1:21 pm

    The 4* resort sounds lovely. Hiking? sounds so wonderful yet terrifying at the same time. (I am sooo out of shape)I’m so glad that your spring break was one of beauty and adventure.

    Lissa’s last blog post..Thursday 13 April 16,2009

  19. All Rileyed Up

    April 16, 2009 2:08 pm

    I’ve always wanted to see Arches. You are going to post some of the stuffed doberman shots, right?

    All Rileyed Up’s last blog post..Poetry Talk with Ginny Kaczmarek

  20. Amy Ruttan

    April 16, 2009 6:06 pm

    Sounds like lots of fun. ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Celticlibrarian

    April 16, 2009 7:56 pm

    Wow! What a trip! I’ve always wanted to visit the arches. Glad you had fun. ๐Ÿ˜€

    Celticlibrarian’s last blog post..13 Versions of Cinderella

  22. Jannie Funster

    April 16, 2009 8:39 pm

    I’ve stayed in 4 one-star resorts, does that count??

    Geez, you must be in great shape, doing almost all those hikes — and the hardest one too. Methinks ye must be a might hardy lass, there Susan H. Gottfried.

    Yes, I did know that soil is alive. With nematodes!! In fact, if nematodes suddenly disappeared the world would literally fall apart. I read it in a booooook!

    And the name of the book was “Quite A Year For Plums.”

    Wow, how did I remember that? Well, basically, because I kick ass in the memory division of life. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Jannie Funster’s last blog post..Twitterpated (not!) (yet)

  23. Xakara

    April 16, 2009 9:45 pm

    I came back just in time! Yes! I missed you. Can’t wait to see pictures. ๐Ÿ™‚



  24. {S.T.U.F.F.}

    April 16, 2009 10:27 pm

    I {heart} the Double Arch…breathtaking!!
    Now, you would have had me at the Fiery Furnace…that I not so sure about.
    Looks like a fantastically adventurous vacation.

    {S.T.U.F.F.}’s last blog post..Theme Thursday…{deux}

  25. PopArtDiva

    April 17, 2009 2:58 pm

    Sounds like you had a great time – Utah is so gorgeous and I love the Western Slope of Colorado, used to summer there for a few years doing art shows.

    I saw your masthead is “under construction” – I’m a graphic designer and that’s what I specialize in masthead/logos and branding design. You can see a few samples on my website,, and I’m uploading my latest ones this weekend. If you’d like a quote send me an e-mail from the site.

    Thanks for stopping by my TT post on Rock and Roll today. Had to laugh at you comment on leg warmers!

    PopArtDiva’s last blog post..I WANNA ROCK AND ROLL ALL NIGHT – KISS Retro Rock Classic for OSF

  26. Wylie

    April 18, 2009 8:48 pm

    Your vacay sounds heavenly – especially the 4 star resort ๐Ÿ™‚
    I ended up in Northwestern Ontario for my little holiday. It’s a really lovely piece of the world… but only in August. April was still too cold and mid-seasonish… There was very little snow on the ground so didn’t have that winter wonderland look and without the green of summer, everything just looked barren and blah.

    Wylie’s last blog post..Ouch. Trampolining is harder than it looks…

  27. West of Mars » Blog Archive » Only the Good: Kid Time

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