St. George, Utah 7/2-4/22

We are staying in St. George, UT for three days before continuing our northward trek. We are staying at The Inn at Entrada which has rental condos and is just across the street from where we used to have a home. We like being able to cook most of our own meals and be close to the tennis courts.

Front of our rental unit

Front doorway

Kitchen/dining area

John in the great room with Clark and Lewis

Back patio and view

During the three days we are here we do pretty much what we do at home except in beautiful red rock country. The scenery here is so extraordinary that just a trip to the grocery store is a fabulouse experience. Here are a couple of things you can look at coming home from getting groceries.

My favorite, Red Mountain. I took this photo this afternoon riding home from Harmon’s grocery store.

This isn’t my photo of Snow Canyon State Park but the park is only about a mile from where we are staying

As I said our days are pretty much like our days at home. We get up early and play tennis. We need to be on the court by 7 AM because otherwise it is too hot! Every day we have been here the temperature is over 100F. It is usually around 75F-80F at 7 AM. It makes for a very long morning. We go out for lunch and mosey around for a while looking at stuff mostly from the confines of our air conditioned car. We lived here off and on for eighteen years so it always is interesting to see what is new.

And so much is new! St. George was named the fastest growing metropolitan area in the United States recently. There is building going on everywhere. Our little outpost by Snow Canyon used to be fairly isolated but now more houses are being built and another resort is going in right next door. The traffic has become heavy even during the summer when the heat usually made St.George a ghost town. We used to know pretty much everyone at Entrada and now we know almost no one. I have no idea where the water is going to come from for the increase in population. This is a desert here and the government both locally and state do not seem to have a plan. The big reservoirs of Lake Mead and Lake Powell are at historic lows. In the meantime building continues apace.

Here’s some stuff we looked at-

A giant spider partially made out of license plates in front of Morgan Pest Control.

Sadly our tennis courts are falling into disrepair as the Pickleball fans are now trying to take over the third of what used to be our four tennis courts.
This is the infamous Indian creating a petroglyph sculpture near to our old house. Once we climbed up to be with the Indian in the dark. I stepped into the sloping edge to the far right of the the sculpture and fell off.. Ow!

We also take a look at our old house. We listed it for sale furnished. The people who bought it wanted it exactly as we had it. Not only did they want the furniture but also our sheets, our pots and pans, our dishes and silverware, our artwork, everything. We had to fight with them to allow us to take the pottery we had collected. We peeked in one time and it was exactly like we left it. Today we can see they are still using our patio furniture but we are afraid to go up and peer in the windows.

Our old house with somewhat overgrown landscaping

Another view

The view of the back of our house (center) from across the pond. The pond seems to have a major alga problem

We end each day in St. George with a happy hour of popcorn and wine and a dinner that we cook ourselves. We brought along a suitcase full of kitchen essentials so that we could make meals here. On the first night we had chicken wings and cole slaw.

On the second night we had penne with shrimp and broccoli

Sunday was the third cooking night. Sunday is always make-your-own breakfast for dinner. John made a flat open-faced omelet with bacon, onion, mushrooms, and cheese. I made this vegetable stir-fry with scrambled eggs.

We go traditional for the Fourth of July with hamburgers, tater tots, and cole slaw

On Tuesday we are on the road again, destination Pocatello, Idaho. It is one of our longer driving days but we hope to get out and see a few sights along the way.

A visit to St. George, UT. August 14-20, 2021

John, Jonathan and I spent a week in St. George right across the street from our former home. Here are some pictures-

Jon relaxing in the condo

John preparing what Jonathan has dubbed the drink of St. George, a Negroni Sbagliato

We played a lot of tennis, Jon hitting a forehand

Follow-through

John running for a shot

We did a lot of cooking too. Jon is preparing a special dinner for us.

Jon in the kitchen

Our fabulous Oak City scallops with mashed potatoes, braised leeks, mushrooms, asparagus, and a beurre blanc sauce

Our last night we had dinner out at the club. It’s a beautiful setting with mediocre food.

Celebrating a wonderful week together

Road trip – to St. George, UT via Bryce Canyon NP. 4/26/21

We travel along UT 12, probably the scariest road ever. At several points the land drops into canyons on either side of the road with just us and the car on a tiny spine of land. I do not take pictures because first of all, I do not want to look and second, because I have tried to take pictures before and there is no way for the camera to capture the depth of the canyons.

The rock along much of UT 12 is white and honey colored

We finally make it to Escalante, UT and find a place to eat some breakfast. The Escalante Outfitters is part serious hiking place and part eco-driven and hippie snack bar. We opt for a crustless egg and vegetable soufflé which turns out to be quite delicious.

Egg soufflé breakfast

As we get nearer to Bryce Canyon we can see the Aquarius Plateau in the distance.

Aquarius Plateau

It is our plan to just make one stop in Bryce, at Fairyland Point. We figure with it being the weekend the park will be overrun with tourists. Plus the sky is looking pretty ominous.

Hoodoos and bad weather impending

Fairyland Point

Fairyland point with Aquarius Plateau in the background

John at Bryce Canyon

Mary looking wind blown and cold

After departing Bryce we head through Red Canyon

We change drivers when we get to I-15 and I end up driving through some of the worst rain I have ever experienced. It is coming down in sheets and the road is hard to see with all the spray from the other cars and trucks. Plus the speed limit is 80 mph!!  When we reach St. George the weather miraculously clears up and we stop at a favorite of ours for lunch, Mad Pita Express.

Great lunch at Mad Pita Express.

We check into the Inn at Entrada, get ourselves settled, and go shopping at Harmon’s for sushi and lentils for dinner.

Our one bedroom suite has a very attractive living room

A small but well-laid out kitchen (but poorly equipped)

An big round table for all our guests (no guests)

A king size bedroom

Nice bathroom with two sinks and separate potty room

After having our sushi hors d’oeuvres we make a lentil stew with mushrooms, carrots, and chicken sausage.

Lentil stew

 

Slickrock hiking near Gunlock, UT. 3/2/21

I found some interesting looking hikes not too far from our base in St. George. The Bowl and the Vortex are mostly in a slickrock area in the Red Mountain Wilderness near Gunlock and Veyo, UT. Veyo is famous for its cinder cones and there is still a lot of volcanic rubble around. To reach the slickrock area we had to hike a very difficult downslope full of sharp basalt rocks. I needed help from John and Jon’s steadying hands.

The trail was not well marked and the hiking guide just said to follow the cairns. What cairns!? We would come across two or three close together and then nothing. So although we hiked around the area for almost 3 hours we never did find the Vortex. Luckily the area was beautiful and there were very few people about so our hike was pretty nice regardless of whether we found our goal!

Pictures from the hike-

As it turns out our goal was between the two big piles of rocks. We were told this by other hikers after we gave up and were going back to the car.

Jon did a lot of reconnoitering but did not find the right spot.

Here he is searching in another spot.

Hiking on the slickrock

Arches

Taking a breather

Enjoying our hike

Jon took this picture from quite a ways in front of us. I am a hiking slowpoke.

Basalt outcropping

Jon leading the way

Our reward for all the hiking was a delicious steak dinner with tater tots and collards and corn. Cooking together has been a highlight of our vacation.

Rib-eye steak, tater tots, and collards and corn

After dinner we took a walk over to our old house. It appeared that someone was home this time!

Our former house in SG