April 7 – 10, 2014
After getting our fill of camping on the edge of a cliff in Gooseneck State Park, we continued north on Hwy 191 toward Blanding, Utah, and turned west on Utah 95 for 14 miles to arrive at Comb Wash. Comb Wash is BLM land and it is free to boondock at this lovely spot. We read about this location on another blog that we follow Wheeling It. We have the same size rig as Paul and Nina, so I always feel confident following in their footsteps. If they can do it, we can do it! Plus, they always find amazing places.
We got a very large level site and set ourselves up so that our refrigerator was on the shady side. This also gave me the necessary afternoon shade to enjoy sitting outside and watching the late afternoon sun light up beautiful colors on Comb Ridge.
Mike and Lucy get comfy for happy hour.
There are many wonderful hikes in this area, but one that we were particularly interested in was the hike to House on Fire. This is a Puebloan ruin that looks like it is on fire when the sunlight hits it just right. We read that late morning was the perfect time to catch the light. What time is that? We aren’t early morning people, but I figured that we would be doing good if we got to the trail head by 9:30 a.m. That would give us plenty of time to hike the 1.5 miles to the ruins and still arrive by “late morning”. I’m impressed that we actually did make it to the trail head at 9:30, but then I got so anxious about missing the perfect sun moment that we practically ran the mile and a half! We got there way too early.
Finally, at about 11:15 am, the flames appeared. It was definitely worth the wait.
The sun doesn’t actually shine on the rocks. They are always in the shade. It’s a reflection of light at a certain angle that creates the magic flames. We continued on the trail for another couple of miles and saw other cliff ruins, as well. It was a good hike.
Of course, we had to visit Natural Bridges National Monument. Lucy couldn’t hike with us there, so she had to stay home. There are 3 natural bridges at the park. A natural bridge is made by the erosive action of moving water. We hiked to Sipapu Bridge which is the second largest natural bridge in the world. It also has the steepest trail to the canyon bottom in the park, and we felt it!
Climbing back up was the fun part. Whew.
We also hiked to Owachomo Bridge, the oldest and most delicate of the 3 bridges. This was a short and easy hike.
We only stayed in Comb Wash a few nights, but we plan to return. There are many more excellent hikes in this area that we have on our list!
Next up, Moab and Arches National Park. Cheers!