Monday, February 15, 2010

Presidents' Day Weekend

True to tradition, we had our usual family guests for the long weekend. Robert and Janet and girls joined us. We always love having them come for the holiday. Of course, it wouldn't be complete without Abe. It IS his birthday, after all! We snapped this picture of most of us. Games, family, food and ABE! What could be better?

You might remember that last year we went snow shoeing in the mountains to a YURT. See
This year, we opted to head south and do some red-rock area hiking. And, boy, did we hike! We were heading for "Elephant Arch" in Washington County. We hiked along a road for quite some time. Then we hiked in a supposedly "dry" stream bed. It was not dry. But we discovered the source of the water after a bit--a well being drilled for the city water supply. They just had some of the water going down the stream. I didn't think to take a photo of the drilling rig. We climbed some rocks, walked over hills, and found the arch! Nick was nice enough to be our scout on occasion to see if we really WERE headed in the right direction. I thought my map was good, but it was a little hard to follow. Well, especially if it's ME reading it!! ha. (I went the wrong way first.) Robert reminded me that maps were his livelihood after all. And yes, he was right.

Click on the picture above this. It's Nick and Caroline waving at me and Robert. The kids are up by the "elephant's" trunk. They climbed further along with Sarah and Amanda and ended up on the Elephant's head and back. Scarey! Rob and I stayed and took pictures of them. We seem to do that a lot. ;-)

Interesting rock formations from erosion. We were still hiking in the stream bed at this point.

The sign/trail marker by Caroline says "Bone Wash" and I suppose it is mostly dry as a bone. There'd been rain and we could see the splash marks in the pristine sand. We also saw animal tracks. And the sand was so fine you could read fine print on the bottom of shoes in the foot prints left behind! ("Size 10 1/2 Adidas" for example, from the people ahead of us!)
Yes, we hiked and hiked and hiked. Turns out it was over 6 miles round trip! That was way more than we were planning to do and we were kind of tuckered out . Next years' hike is already picked out and being planned by Robert. I'm sure it will be shorter. ha. We like to see petroglyphs and he really wants to see the cinder cones down by Gunlock and Ivins. I don't know why he's so interested in cinder cones, but I'm looking forward to it.

Here we are at the beginning of the hike. Had this gate been opened, we would have had a much shorter hike! Caroline was such a good trooper to go all that way with no complaints. Even Robert wasn't feeling all that super (head cold), but we all persevered and enjoyed it in the end. At least, I THINK we all did. (enjoy it)

As we were heading down to Washington county, I noted that there are a LOT of hikes we've been on down that way! "Oh, there's another place we've gone!" "Remember that trail head down there?" "Isn't that the area we hiked a couple of times?" Yeah, it must be a favorite. I think we've only done snow activities a couple of times. Robert, Me, Caroline (8), Mandy and Sarah all went. Oh, and Nick. We picked him up down there in St. George/Washington. He had been at the temple with a friend, but they dropped him off at Walmart and we got him there. Seems Nick remembered to bring his play pants, shirt and socks, but forgot his tennis shoes for hiking. I found him in Walmart wearing his shorts and t-shirt, white socks and DRESS SHOES! I just had to snap a picture of him. It was on his phone, however. You'll have to ask him to send it to you if you are interested in seeing that lovely shot. Apparently, there is some website out there for posting photos of "People of Walmart." Yes, he fit right in. But now he loves his new hiking sandals. ;-)

The rest of the weekend was filled with playing games and eating. Games and eating, games and eating. We did take time out to go to church on Sunday. Monday we played MORE games and Rob's family left around 4 pm so they could be home before too late. About an hour after they left, my cousin Ken from California stopped by with his wife and son. We had nice little visit with them for a bit. Also, Seth's parents stopped by for a 30 minute visit...then Mike had ALL SEVEN of his Boys Scout troop come in for Cake and Ice Cream after they took down the American Flags from around our ward. It was a busy couple of hours! I tended Caroline and Jonathan, Gail and Seth went to the Music Arts presentation at the Heritage Theater on Monday night, too. That was Seth's first opera ever. He said, "It was pretty good. I yawned a lot, but I didn't nod off."! I think that is one way to judge an opera, Yes? Why not? ha.

And the pictures are not in order. sorry. Nice long hike. We survived, it was a lovely day in Washington County (60 degrees !) and we had lunch at Costco after we were done hiking. I really wanted to see their swim suits there because mine is shot. I actually got one, so the trip was a success! Hiking, visiting, eating and shopping in one fell swoop! Doesn't get better than that, folks. Hope your weekend was nice, too.


Hali said...

Awww... It's ABE! I remember that lovely statue. Looks like a fun weekend! Glad you enjoyed yourselves.

Donna said...

ah, wish I would have found cheap flights out to spend the weekend with you guys - we did a LOT of driving through the states... at the rate we drove we could have come all the way out there :o)
We had a great time on our week long trek and are home now...

Suzanne said...

So neat that you guys do that as a tradition. Isn't it great to be near enough to a sibling to have those traditions? Enjoyed the pictures and reading about all the fun!