Saturday, May 28, 2016

Idaho & Utah

We crossed the state of Idaho and arrived in Utah (10122 miles / 16290 km in our trip so far):

In Idaho we went to the Craters of the Moon preserve defined around a volcanic area (flood basalt):

Before arriving to the Craters of the Moon, we drove through this plain (notice the rain showers on the right). 

We spotted a pika—we had to be very careful to not scare it before taking this picture! It made a funny squeaky toy sound that sounded just like this

We climbed the "Inferno Cone".

Spatter Cones, a series of mini volcanoes.

Next we headed toward Utah:

On interstate highway 15, driving south, past Pocatello, ID.

In Utah we had to drive through a mountain pass high enough that temperature dropped close to freezing and it started snowing.

Our first stop in Utah was the magnificent Bryce Canyon:

3 mile hike into the valley.

An arch named "Natural Bridge".

After that we headed toward the eastern part of the state, driving on Utah State Route 24, which offers great views of the incredible landscape:

We stopped here where petroglyphs from Native Americans can be seen.

Close-up of the petroglyphs (in the center of the image).

We went to Arches National Park:

Landscape Arch, the 5th longest natural arch in the world (290.1 ft / 88.4 m).

Fiery Furnace—an area of maze-like narrow passages and tall rock columns.

Panorama of Fiery Furnace.

Delicate Arch.

Double Arch.

North Window.

Balanced Rock.
Then we drove through Monument Valley on US Route 163 (yet another absolutely stunning landscape!):

"Mexican Hat" rock formation.

Monument Valley.

Next stop: Arizona.