I was still feeling a bit under the weather but wanted to get out for a bit, so we decided to take a ride down to Mexican Hat, a tiny town south of here. There is a famous road that leads there called the Moki Dugway, a steep, treacherous, unpaved track that drops 1100 feet from the Cedar Mesa to the valley below. Many bug-eyed travelers have come in to our visitors center, still shaky from driving this road.
Neither of us really minded it, appreciating the amazing view of the Valley of the Gods, and in the distance, Monument Valley. There is no guard rail there, but we sent slowly and had no trouble.
Next we stopped off at Gooseneck State Park. I wished I had my telephoto lens already. At the park you can look down 1,000 feet into an entrenched meander created by the silt-laden San Juan River. It weaves back and forth, flowing more than five miles while progressing only one linear mile toward the Colorado River and Lake Powell.
Jonathan got excited there, viewing a lovely desert spiny lizard, who bravely posed for many photos.
A short time a ater we arrived at Mexican Hat. The name comes from a curiously sombrero-shaped, 60-foot (18 m) wide by 12-foot (3.7 m) thick (18.3 x 3.7 m), rock outcropping on the northeast edge of town. The “Hat” has two rock climbing routes ascending it.
The village itself is small, home to fewer than 100 people and offering a few restaurants, Inn’s and trading posts. A river runs through it, the San Juan, and we sat down beside it in a shady spot, with no one else around.
After this respite we tried out one of the local restaurants, having tacos and nachos. Most of the population seemed to be Native American. Though the town doesn’t have much, we liked what if offered and want to go back some night for dinner.
On the way home we experienced a Utah traffic jam, a large herd of cows in the middle of the road being corralled by a bona fide cowboy.
Though I was tired again by the time we got back, I really needed to get out of the house for something besides a doctor’s appointment, so I was really pleased with all that we saw and did. And if I ever start feeling better, we’ll do a whole lot more. I miss hiking and need to get back to it soon!
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