By: Bears Butt

On Sunday, August 3rd, we got up late as usual and ate a late breakfast as well.  We were actually stalling for time until Winemaker’s Uncle Clyde would be up and moving and ready for our visit.  Winemaker had made a lot of calls last night and had things lined up but there wasn’t any “time” established for us to show up to his place.  So, we figured a man in his mid to late 90’s would not be moving much before 10.  We got to his place around 10:30 or 11 (I’m not sure) and he had been up early and moved the cows out of the roadway.  He figured we would be there around 8 and so he wanted to be at the gate by the road to let us in.  Well  he had his cows in an area between two gates, one at the road side, the other near his home.  As he made his way to get the gate by the house open, the cows over took him and pushed their way into around his house.  He opened another gate to a different pasture and finally got the cows to move into that place.  Then he opened up the two gates so we could just drive right in when we got there.  After such a cow punching ordeal, he was tired and needed a rest.  We got there about the time he was rested up and ready for visitors.

Uncle Clyde is a great guy.  Short and skinny and full of fun and mischief.  I’m betting that in his younger days he was a hoot to pal around with.  He and his second wife (she has passed), built their retirement home when he was 80.  He is now 96 years young and still giving the cows a run for their money.  We got to visit with him and two of his daughters, Debbie and Terrie, for a few hours.  It was fun to get to meet them and share some of our stories.  Uncle Clyde could remember most of the fun things even if he wasn’t there at the time.  His goal is to live to be 100 and after visiting with him I am sure he will make it.

Well, after leaving Uncle Clyde’s, we decided we would head for Flaming Gorge and see how close we could make it.  Our drive took us over Douglas Pass and trust me on this one, it is a steep and winding road to the top!  Rather scary in some spots, but they were on Winemakers side, so it didn’t bother me too much.  Going down the other side was a slow ordeal in the coach as I dropped it into “1” and left it there for the 7 miles it took to come off the top.  At one point I was very glad I was going so slow, because at a hair pin turn (they are all hair pin turns), a truck pulling a 4 horse trailer was on my side of the road and cut the corner very close.  Had I been going even half the speed limit I’m sure we would have collided.  I ended up stopping and as he went past the back of the horse trailer was only a couple of feet away from the front of the coach.  Just more proof of the intelligence of some horse owners.

Our travel took us up and down and over and back and finally we  found ourselves in Vernal, Utah.  And the time was only about 4:45!  We made pretty good time going over Douglas Pass.  I told Winemaker we needed to get up into the mountains and into the cool air.  The temperature in Vernal had to be in the mid 90’s.  So, up the winding road we went towards Dutch John and Flaming Gorge.  We had no idea where we would finally park for the night, but we just kept on keeping on.

In the pines and quakies, the air was nice and cool and the clock wasn’t much past 5:30, when we spotted a Forest Service campground and pulled into it.  There were lots and lots of camping spots and with our Senior discount the cost would be $8 for the night!  We camped in number 6, backed into the 30 foot opening and shut ‘er down!  A quick setup and I was popping a beer at 5:45!  Can’t beat that.

As the night began to come upon our spot, the deer began showing up.  I think we counted 4 and the first two almost walked right into our camp spot.

We went to bed early, 9:30 or so, and it was very quiet and peaceful.  There were several sprinkling rain storms that passed over us in the night and this morning we awoke to an outside temperature of 55!  Enough that I wore my coat to take the garbage down to the dump site and walk MaPa’s.  We also saw 4 more deer and I don’t think they were all the same ones we saw last night.

We decided to call it a trip and put our rig on the road for home.  I wanted to go back by way of I-80 from Green River and so the trip from Manila to Green River was only the second time I have ever been on that stretch of road.  Nothing spectacular, just a lot of rolling sage covered hills and deep eroded gullies.

I gassed it for the last time in Green River and we made it home just after 3 p.m.

A fun circle of a trip that took us through some spectacular scenery.  Only two of the nights required air conditioning and we saw a lot of deer along the way.

So, what do I think (in general) about the towns we went through?

Moab…Too commercial, too many people, not a really friendly place.

Monticello….Don’t blink.

4 Corners….Worth the trip just to say you were there.

Dolores…..A cool little town to look at as we drove through.  Very glad Dennis and Laura live close by.  I think if you were going to stop there for an overnight and wanted to see the town, all you would see is the inside of bars.  Lots of bars.

Grand Junction….Friendly folks, a bit on the hot side (this time of year).  A town bigger than I expected and it’s spread out over a lot of ground.  There seems to be something there for everyone.

Vernal….A pretty “dirty” little town, reasonable gas prices.

Green River…About the same as Vernal.  I didn’t spend any time talking to anyone as we only stopped for gas and were gone.  They force you to drive through town to get back onto the freeway and the center of town looks interesting.  Again, lots of bars.

Willard….Well, it’s home and always will be.  It’s very nice to be home.

Bears Butt

August 4, 2014

Written on August 4th, 2014 , Vacation Time

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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.