Pursuit Horizon Blog 10 – Bye Zion, Grand Canyon, The Volcano18 Jul 2012, Posted by The Journey in
Amanda say’s “It’s a big hole.” A happy hippy peddler. Amanda scores a free one. Kneel before Zach, destroyer of all.
Blog 10 –
It’s Tuesday and we are leaving for the Grand Canyon. I must admit I am a bit excited. In fact my throttle hand is too, and great we just passed a cop. Z swears it’s a plastic mannequin, but that’s just silly, little towns don’t really do that do they? YES, yes they do. And apparently they make fun of that fact too, as on his cop car there is a bumper sticker which reads ” I love plastic donuts”. Ok thats great.
We get out into open country and hit the Vermillion Cliffs, where i pick up a cowboy accent and feel the need to be in wranglers, as i sing “Home On The Range.”
As we approach the North Rim I have been told I cannot look or even peak at the Grand Canyon until Z has the camera ready to go. I have never seen it and he desperately wants to capture my amazement. One problem, after all the build up from various park rangers and Z, I open my eyes and…“It’s a big hole”. That’s all I can think of to say, it looks just like the pictures in every text book and postcard. Yah it’s big, but after Zion it’s just not doing it for me. Maybe if I was IN the canyon. But atop here it is a big hole.
So after that disappointment to Z we head out for a long ride to Sunset Crater national Park. I have learned of Dispersed Camping and am eager to please Z by finding us free camping. Dispersed Camping is essentially primitive camping; no facilities or amenities, just a piece of land. It is free in all National Parks, and most states on fire roads, BLM, or USDA roads. SCORE!!!
We set up camp around 8, and I promptly fall asleep, around 7am we both wake up and decide to explore the park a bit. Where we come across a guy on a loaded down bike; named Stevie. Stevie has been traveling via bicycle for over a year; he is an artist who decided he need to explore a bit before settling down back in New York. His bike is eclectic, older (around 70’s era), loaded with nearly 100lbs of gear and copper plated under a thin layer of road grime. I like that Stevie is being true to himself and is just going to see the US on his pace. After chatting with him for a good hour, we decide we must move on. I could have picked his brain for a while; he had lots of insight for us.
So off to the petrified lava field we go. The volcano exploded around 900 years ago and life is just starting to return, but so very sparsely. When you see the lava flow, it feels as if you have stumbled upon some strange movie set, where the world has been burned to the ground. The black gigantic rocks that surround us are sharp, and fragile like glass. Everywhere you look there is lava, and lots of it. Black sand surrounded the lava flow edges. Nowhere else in the US do I know of a place to see this, besides maybe Hawaii. And even then the immensity of this flow may not exist there. It is too hard to put into words. Maybe the pictures will describe it better.
I am enjoying more and more the road the past few days, I like just being out here. I do miss my fish, my cat and my family, but I will be back to them soon. For now all I want to do is get back out there!
Blog 10 –
Zion fades away in the mirror as we zoom through the 1.1 mile tunnel leading out of the park. Grand Canyon here we come. I can’t wait for Amanda to see it. I was in awe by it when I first laid eyes upon it. I thought it was one of the most humbling experiences I have had. It’s massive, beautiful, and just freaking cool.
Approaching North Rim – Seriously this is one of the best rides I have ever experienced on a motorcycle. Vast lush green meadows, encompassed by forest, newly paved dark black smooth asphalt, all twisting towards the north rim of the Grand Canyon.
Wet Again – Thunderstorms as we approach the entrance of the park and our night camping. I don’t even care. The storm is just adding to the awesomeness that is this epic ride we have been on today. I quickly mount up the camera to the motorcycle and head back down the road; drenched but loving every second – Awesome-Sauce!
Warm and Wet – Amanda is in the tent all warm. I’m soaked all the way through freezing after getting back from riding in the rain. Umm I don’t care it was worth it. Am I getting across how much I loved today’s ride yet 😉
“It’s just a big hole, it’s pretty but, eh I liked Zion better.” – That was Amanda’s reaction to the Grand Canyon. Well I guess the difference in how we all experience things is what makes us all unique. However I guess I was a bit disappointed since I felt so strongly about it. Just a big hole . . . ?
Third World America; I don’t get it – So we stopped at Tuba City, AZ and American Indian Reservation. As you enter it looks like a third world country in the middle of the US with people living in houses made of scrap. Small children playing in bare dirt lots with nothing at all, looking scathingly clothed and poor. Just five more minutes into the center of Tuba City and conditions improve and are decent. You can tell some people around here have money. Why aren’t they helping to improve the living standards of their neighbors. I just don’t get it. Call me a socialist liberal or whatever but that is just sad.
A Peddler From NY – On our way into Sunset Volcano National Park we meet Stevie a bicyclist who has traveled across the US from NY. A fully hippy looking, earthy fellow, who you can tell has a kind and gentle soul as he tells you his tale. His bicycle is amazing, a vintage 70’s era machine that has seen thousands of miles. It was laden with all the essentials one needs and has the appearance of a hobos cart until you look close. Then you see it’s a work of art. “No F-ing way, this thing is F#@! heavy.” I exclaim as I try and lift Stevie’s bicycle over the curb to position it for the camera. It must weight 80lbs easy if not more. I ask him “When you see motorcyclist passing you as you peddle across America’ do you just think we are a sad bunch of pussies?” Stevie chuckled and just replied “No I think I’m an idiot for riding this bicycle, I’m jealous.”
I Am The Destroyer Of Civilizations; Kneel Before Me! – We are standing on a expansive lava flow. The earth is desolate and reduced to black glass. As I stand atop the rubble of the destruction my mind can only revert back to that of a twelve year old who feels he has conquered the planet with my mighty space army. On a realistic note this place is just weird and intriguing. The lava looks like chalky chunks but it sounds like glass beneath our feet. It’s as sharp as glass too. Zaaaaaap my laser beam emitting JOBY Blade has decimated those who stand in my way, ha, ha, ha. Sorry I couldn’t resist.