Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Town #8: Moab est. 1878

Moab sits about one southeast of Green River along the Colorado River. It is the county seat of Grand County. The Old Spanish Trail crossed the Colorado River at this point. It was settled briefly in the 1850s, but the settlement was abandoned after some problems with the local Native Americans. Farmers came back in 1878 and started a thriving, if small, farming community. The population of Moab grew and fell along with the uranium boom of the Cold War era, and now it caters heavily to the tourists who come to experience the rocky grandeur around it. Arches and Canyonlands National Parks lie just beyond the borders of the town. The town's name hasn't always been popular with its residents, but I think it is a much better name than Uvadalia.

This mural was painted on the wall of a bike shop in Moab. The mountain bikers are common around Moab, but I don't think I have ever seen a gigantic spider in "them thar' hills". This E trying to look scared for the camera, but I think she looks more like she is trying to help the spider scare the bikers instead.

Here is the family by Delicate Arch in Arches National Park which is why we drove out here in the first place. Reproductions of this arch are all over Utah. If you look closely at the welcome to Moab sign, you can see it there. It isn't a very hard 1 1/2 mile hike to the arch, but you need to do it early in the morning because those rocks get hot really fast. We started at 7 in the morning, and the temperature was just about right. By the time we got back to the parking lot, around 10, it was getting really warm. The people just starting out were already sweating after a few hundred feet. It was worth all the driving to see that arch in person. Very impressive. The arch is also a good place to mingle with an international crowd.

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