Quick weekend trip to the Cedar Mesa area of Bears Ears Nat’l Monument with my daughter Val, her husband Rich, and their four kids. I’m 10 weeks out of back surgery and hoping my Dr will clear me to do what I did when I see him this Friday. I did stay away from their jaunt as pictured above.

Later, the grandkids went down to play in the water pockets of the upper canyon. We followed along from the second topmost tier, tossing pebbles into the water pockets for them to get. Val went back to camp to fix lunch before they were going on an aggressive afternoon/evening hike.

Rich had never seen the ruins in the upper canyon and I say, “Rich, we’re almost there.” So he and I go and I show him around. As is always the case when I go into places I’ve been to many times, I find something I’ve never seen before. No exception this time.

At the end, Rich beats feet back to camp to eat and get ready for the later hike. I plod along at a slow but constant pace and top out, pretty happy with how I’d done. Their 7 year-old, Benny, runs to meet me as I’m walking into camp. I get a plate of food. Rich comes over and tells me that while he was eating, Benny came up and said, “Dad, it’s not very nice to leave grandpa all by himself in the canyon.”

Happy Fathers’ Day!!

Later on, there’s drama: They get back from their hike about midnight and build a fire and have a snack. This frog hops out of the dark, right up to the fire – real close. So their oldest, Alex, reaches down to catch it: “Yeah Alex! Save little froggy, save him!” Frog hops over his hand and lands right in the fire. Dead.

I came across these owl feathers stuck in the bark of this tree.  There were also some placed under small stones. Author Craig Childs’ chapter, “Raven”, in his book, “The Animal Dialogues” came to mind. I think these feathers may have been placed by human hands that have turned the pages of his book.

One Responses

  • Probably one of our family’s best trips. According to Easton it was the “best trip ever!” That desert feeds my soul. You know when you wake up with gratitude in your heart just for being where you are that it’s something special. So glad you could come!

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