Grocery Shopping Day

When you live way out in a remote location, like we do, going grocery shopping is an all day affair. Yesterday we decided to go to Hurricane, Utah. We decided to go there because 1) they have a Wal-Mart there and it is a prettier city than Page, Arizona, our other option. 2) Because the grocery store there has fresh mozzarella. There is no fresh mozzarella to be found in either grocery store in Kanab, which is only 85 miles away. So, Hurricane it was. 3) Because there is a Chinese restaurant in Hurricane that is pretty good. And 4) because it is only another 12 miles or so to get to Washington City, Utah, where there is a Best Buy. So, we hopped in the truck around 9:00 a.m. to go the 128 miles to buy groceries. Because fresh mozzarella is one of my favorite things in the world.

To get to Hurricane, we have to drive down the Kaibab Plateau, which is aglow with fall colors right now. Blazing, even:

Hwy 67 going north

Aspens are beautiful this year


After we leave the Kaibab Plateau, we drive along Hwy 89A north to Fredonia, Arizona. Just before we descend into the desert, we get a great view of the Vermilion Cliffs off in the distance. The desert is so green this year because the monsoon rains were abundant.

The Vermilion Cliffs in the distance are such a wonderous sight.

Another view of the Vermilion Cliffs

And one more, just because I love this area

Once we’re down off the plateau, we drive across desert for miles and miles. And miles. The desert is beautiful in its own way, from the scrub trees, wildflowers and many rock formations.

Desert in northern Arizona

More desert, along Hwy 389

And more desert. I told you it was miles and miles of it.

And then we come to the town of Hurricane, Utah. They pronounce it “Hur-i-cun”, where I say “Hur-ah-cane”.  We come down off yet another plateau, into town.

The road gets steep, a 6% grade, going down into the town of Hurricane.

Down we go!

And suddenly you see the town, down there in the valley

Once we got into town, we went to eat at the Chinese restaurant for lunch. After lunch we did all our errands, and even went to Washington City to go to Best Buy. Girls and guys, if you lived in the wilderness like we do, you would know this was a much needed jaunt. Just seeing towns and people and cars and stores–well, it was just fantastic! On the way home, we headed back the way we came, but seeing the scenery from the other direction is all new:

The Wal-Mart in Hurricane.

Just more scenic wonderment.

Leaving Hurricane to go home

On the road between Hurricane, Utah and Fredonia, Arizona

We decided to stop in Fredonia to eat dinner at Cowboy Butte Restaurant. It is the only restaurant in Fredonia, and they have the best steak in Northern Arizona.

Downtown Fredonia, Arizona

The Grand Canyon Hotel in Fredonia, Arizona. Skip it.

The best steak in town! Cowboy Butte Restaurant

Filet Mignon cooked to perfection, in the middle of nowhere.

After dinner, we headed home, and were treated to a beautiful sunset over the desert:

Northern Arizona sunset. Gorgeous end to a great day.


Fall Colors At The North Rim

kaibab national forest

The Kaibab Forest dressed up in Fall Colors

I have been back on the job for a little over a month now. While I am glad to be working and earning my keep, I can tell you it is wearing me out! Last week was the first time I worked at the entrance this season. I was on my feet most of the day. While I felt good to be out there, that night was really rough on me. Thank goodness for pain pills.

yep, me again, out there working

By the end of my work week, I was exhausted. I had made plans with a new friend to go to Hurricane, Utah, 125 miles away, to go grocery shopping and have hunch at a Chinese restaurant. But by the last day of work, I knew I couldn’t go. When I got home from work that day, I called my friend to let her know I had to cancel. I got her voice mail, which is not unusual up here, since we can’t get a cell signal in many spots. I told her I just didn’t feel up to it. And if you know me, if I cancel plans to go somewhere, I am really not feeling good.

Sunset out my door tonight

The next day I slept until 8:45 a.m. When I got up, there was a missed call in my phone from the campground. I immediately called them back. My co-worker told me that my friend had been waiting there for me since 8:00 a.m.!  I talked to my friend and apologized, but I still feel so bad about it.

The aspen outside my kitchen window is slowly turning yellow

We won’t have any more days off together this season so I won’t be able to reschedule our trip. Maybe next year  we can get together.

It Was A Beautiful Day

Gorgeous Day!

I went out to the entrance station this morning at WAY EARLY O:CLOCK. It was c-c-c-hilly out there! I got the heater turned on and opened the door to a beautiful view: The aspens turning yellow tells me Fall is right around the corner.

Me looking all Ranger-y

Yes, that’s me, in my parky rangery uniformy. With my hair all cut short. And if I wasn’t wearing glasses my hat would fall down right over my nose.

Yellow eye flowers to keep me company

And when traffic was slow, I had these purty yellow flowers to keep me company. they kept bobbing their cute little heads in the breeze, telling me “Yes, Fall is coming”.

Hiking With Friends

That’s Fabgrandpa, Charlie, Lynda, and me.

As we have always done when company comes to visit, we took Charlie and Lynda on a tour of the canyon. We decided to hike the Cape Royal trail. Now, before you get all excited and start telling me all about how I shouldn’t be hiking yet, let me tell you: the Cape Royal Trail is a handicapped accessible trail, it’s paved and relatively flat, and only about a half mile. And, there are several benches along the way for you to take  rest. As you can see from the photo above, we all took advantage of the bench.


It was a beautiful day to be outside. The clouds were producing some thunderstorms on the South Rim, but here on the North Rim, it was gorgeous.

Fabgrandpa and I made it to the end of the trail.

How many times am I allowed to use the word gorgeous?

It is a very very long way down!

The canyon is deep. It is a very very long way down there.

That thunderstorm is getting closer!

We started seeing the lightening and hearing the thunder from across the canyon and realized it was coming our way, so we decided to start back towards the truck.

I had to take one more picture before we left.

We stopped at Vista Encantada for one last look at the canyon before heading back to the trailer.

What an awesome view!

After one last stop at Vista Encantada to take a few more pictures, we headed back to the trailer. When we got home, I went to bed for the rest of the afternoon. We had a wonderful visit with our friends, and they had to leave all too soon. I wonder where we will be when we see them again?

Going Scenic

Meadows on the way to the North Rim

Yesterday was the first time I went to the entrance station on my job this season. It was exceptionally lovely out there due to all the rain we have received this year.I stayed out there until lunch time, then drove home to eat. On the way I stopped to “smell the flowers”, or at least to take some pictures of them.

Very cool seed head


I have heard this one called Yellow Eye, but not sure if that is the name of it.

Pink Penstemmon

After lunch I drove up to Walhalla Overlook to attend Gaelyn’s Interpretive talk. It was about the history of the people who have lived in the area, and was very interesting.

Walhalla Overlook. The Colorado River is in the center of this photo

Wouldn’t it be nice to have this scene as the backdrop for your job every day?

Here I am with my friend and co-worker, Gaelyn

After the history talk was concluded, Gaelyn and I headed up to Cape Royal for her 3:00 talk. This time she talked about geology, and how the Grand Canyon was formed. Very interesting, but I still can’t get my head around how it happened. I’m just glad it did. This place is awesome even after five years of working here.

Angel’s Window at Cape Royal

A view of Cape Royal

Look how tiny those people look over there. That gives you some little bit of perspective on the size of the rocks and canyon walls.

Another view from Cape Royal

It’s days like this one on the job that just go by way too fast. All too soon it was time to go home for the day. At least there is tomorrow for another view of this fabulous canyon!


Out And About Today At The Grand Canyon

grand canyon

Grand Canyon North Rim

This morning I went out to breakfast again with my friend, Gaelyn. She brought along Chuck and Geri from Phunny Pharm. I had not met them before, but they are really nice. We had a nice breakfast and conversation, and afterwards we went out on the veranda at the back of the lodge.

What a gorgeous view!

It was a really nice, sunny day, with a great view of the Grand Canyon. The rains we have been having here clear the dust out of the air and that makes for a better view.

Looking down into the canyon from the veranda.

I know I must have hundreds of photos of this same view, but I still need more.

Here I am

Next week I will go back to work, so I have to get my visiting done now. I have to go home and try on my uniforms to make sure they will fit. I think though, that they may be a little big on me.

There are lots of places to sit on the veranda.

There are lots of chairs to relax in and just soak in the view, but most of the visitors were waiting in another location for a ranger talk to start.

Chuck from Phunny Pharm, Gaelyn from Geogypsy Traveler, and me at the North Rim

This is Chuck from Phunny Pharm , Gaelyn from Geogypsy Traveler, and me. We really had a nice visit.

Chuck and Geri from Phunny Pharm

After a picture taking session on the veranda, we visited the Native American Heritage Days exhibits and talked with some of the people who were there demonstrating how to make glassware, basket weaving, and other traditional crafts. However, I did not get any photos there.

This little guy kept following me around. Maybe he thought I was going to share the fruit I had left over from breakfast.