More Awesome Utah – Images From My Visit – June 2011
Folks, I’ve been remiss for failing to post these pics much sooner than this. Between a busted computer along with life and motorcycle riding I’ve just been caught up in all sorts of stuff I didn’t take the motorcycle on this trip for a few reasons like incredible heat, massive wind, and the fact that I only had a couple weeks’ worth of riding experience Still, it was well worth the time to go and enjoy more of what Utah has to offer
Now that I’ve gotten around to it, I hope you enjoy the pics and such Don’t forget to click on the pics for full size
After arriving in Utah at the end of a 10+ hour drive (3 of those hours due to my own stupidity ), I settled in for the night at Cindy’s place and got some sleep. The next day we packed up her car with the two of us, Cindy’s mom, and her 90 year old grandmother for a relatively short trip down to Goblin Valley State Park I love interesting desert landscapes like this
Goblin Valley is named for the “goblins” you see in the pics above. Click here for the park’s website and more info
After our visit to Goblin Valley, we headed north past Salt Lake City and spent the night in a hotel. We wanted to get an early start to the day as we’d planned a few different stops The first stop is the location you see above – the American West Heritage Center Now, if you’ve ever thought about what it was like to live on the American Frontier, but wanted to know the truth you’ve got to go there Aside from what you see above, there’s a blacksmith’s shop, a carpenter’s shop, sod house, dugout house, mountain man encampment, Indian village, and quite a bit more. The people in the shops make truly wonderful crafts and sell the products to help fund the center. Admission was very affordable and I highly recommend this stop to everyone. Folks, take your kids and show ‘em what it was like instead of leaving ‘em to read history books in school
Speaking of living history, wait until you see the pics and video in the next part of this post!
After we left the American West Heritage Center, we headed for another history lesson. This time it was to be a truly historic site with nearly perfect replicas of the machinery of the time to bring it to life
The National Park Service operates the Golden Spike Historic Site and the two replica steam locomotives that run there. On May 10, 1869 the Transcontinental Railroad was completed at Promontory Summit just north of the Great Salt Lake. This rail link was incredibly important to the growth of the west coast of the United States
Sadly, but understandably the original locomotives – Jupiter and N0. 119 were scrapped in the 1920’s. They were worn-out machines of a bygone era that nobody was all that interested in at the time. The National Park Service decided that they wanted replicas of these engines and approached Walt Disney to see if he could build them. Walt declined saying he could not give them the realism the project deserved. Chadwell O’Connor Engineering Laboratories of Costa Mesa, CA stepped in and underbid the government itself while spending twice what the contract paid so that they could do the job right
And folks, they got it RIGHT! I felt like I’d been dropped back in the 1860’s for a couple of minutes as No. 119 huffed past me with the smell of steam and coal smoke wafting on the wind and the sound of the bell and whistle ringing into the distance. This is another one of those places to take your kids for an experience they won’t forget. It’s places like Promontory Summit and people like those who keep these locomotives running who allow today’s kids to make a personal connection to what they read in their history classes. That personal connection can make all the difference when they’re learning to enjoy learning and very likely can be the difference between good grades and wanting to play video games
Click here for a great deal more information at SteamLocomotive.com
After the fun and interesting time we’d spent in the past so to speak, Cindy and I headed on over to Crystal Hot Springs to soak in the mineral rich waters I didn’t take pictures due to the number of kids around and the possible misgivings of the other visitors, but we had a nice, relaxing soak and felt even better After that we found a hotel nearby and called it a night.
We didn’t actually have plans for our final day up north, so we headed somewhere we’d been before so I could drool all over the floors again The last time we went to the Hill Aerospace Museum we only had about 45 minutes to see everything. This time that wasn’t a problem! Cindy glanced around and read a book outside for a bit while I appreciated the cool flying machines, but we both had a good time. Oh, and in case you’re wondering – Yes, I want one of those Cushman scooters
Finally we headed back down to Price, UT and kicked back for the evening with a movie. I really didn’t want to go home so soon, but we can’t always get what we want. At least it was an overall good trip with wonderful memories that also provided ideas for the next time I head north in search of cool old stuff and new experiences
That’s it for this trip report. Here’s hoping you enjoyed reading it 10% as much as I enjoyed the trip itself and that you also might have learned a bit here and there Have a great Tuesday, everyone
2 comments to More Awesome Utah – Images From My Visit – June 2011
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