The next day (the 12th) we started for Colorado. I'd been meaning to get pictures of the other side of the Utah coin.... the slim pickings the Navajo have been left with, in a beautiful but barren desert area where nothing will grow.
Like outback folks just about everywhere, they have every car and major appliance they'v ever owned out in their yard. My photo is straight.... this farmer's trailer really was askew like that.
Here is a typical animal pen.
On to Colorado, where we spent an afternoon at Mesa Verde National Park looking at cliff dwellings. Here is the sign at the top of the trail down to one of the ruins:
How's that again??
These folks knew how to build. Nearly a thousand years later, their buildings are still standing. I love looking into the rooms and imagining their daily lives going on there.
ON TO DENVER
The story of the overnight stopover between Mesa Verde and Denver merits its own post, coming eventually.
Today we headed east on Rte. 160 in southern Colorado in wind worthy of the name. We discovered that the awning on our trailer was coming loose and flapping in the wind. Where we got out to fix it, it was too windy to do anything. We could hardly control the doors of the truck to get out and back in. It was hard to stand up. I have never been in wind like that. After we got a little bit over the lea side of the mountain, we got our awning tethered again, still under highly windy conditions. Steve has a sore back, I have a sore shoulder and a sore ankle. Never have I seen sustained wind like that. We have a weather radio that predicted sustained winds of 30-40 mph with gusts up to 65.... but we didn't think that was where we were going.
We came to this sign AFTER we had gotten ourselves adequately secured. When we fixed the awning, we were traveling east with the wind coming from the SSW. I told him it was good we weren't going north or south. But then we turned north onto CO Rte. 25, where this sign was, and we got it broadside. Steve was visibly working with the steering wheel to keep our rig on the road.
These drivers are waiting it out under an overpass in the slight shelter of its man-made hill.
This guy should have. His was the second overturned semi we saw in a space of less than 5 miles. About 15 or 20 miles farther on, we stopped for lunch, and at their cash register in the restaurant was a sign that read, "Truckers: By order of State Patrol, if your load is light or empty, do not proceed south on Rte. 25 due to high wind conditions."
Conditions were a lot better as we continued north. However, Denver, where we've landed for a few days, was really windy today. When we parked and set up, the wind was still bothersome but not inhibiting. If we hadn't come through the gale farther south, we'd have thought it was awful. After practically blowing away earlier, though, it seemed hardly noticeable.
I have got to tell you about the stopover between Mesa Verde and Denver. I'm still laughing. Stay tuned.