Honestly, I have very few pictures. I brought my camera with me pretty much every where we went, but I just wasn't feeling it. Sometimes I prefer to be present, rather than view everything through my camera's limited lens.
After leaving Zion, we headed up to Provo and Salt Lake City area. The kids of course loved the hotel pool, jumping on the hotel beds, and exploring every corner of the closets and kitchenette. Our hotel room kitchen was even stocked with all the dishes and silverware. I couldn't figure out why Dean didn't want to stay three more nights and do a 'little' shopping in Salt Lake City. "Hon, we wouldn't even have to eat out" just didn't work.
We drove up to the Timpanogos National Forest, expecting to do a cave tour. Unfortunately, there was a four hour wait. I was disappointed, as the pictures and website I had seen looked spectacular. Next time I'll reserve ahead of time.
There was still plenty to see there, and multiple hikes and picnic areas. And here was probably the last time on our trip that I had my camera out for an extended period of time. It was beautiful with overflowing rivers cutting through the lush green, and snow capped peaks in the background.
Snow? Hello, this is July! Definitely not Arizona.
Why is it that food tastes so much better outdoors?
For some reason, the mountains reminded me of the book Heidi, and of the Alps. That story was one of my childhood favorites.
After spending a few hours relaxing here, we headed to the Great Salt Lake. We looked at a map, and picked the closest of the two state beaches.
We picked the wrong one. It was very dirty and smelly with dead birds all over the beach. We had to run into the water and stay there, far from the shore - thank goodness its so shallow, until we were ready to leave. We didn't even attempt to see how easy it was to float with the high salinity. I took everybody else's word for it; wading was good enough for me.
The second half of our trip was spent with Dean's brother and his family, as well as another couple living there. We went to an Independence Day festival, saw the parade, and watched fireworks from the banks of the Snake River. But really, the best part of our stay was the visiting. And how fun it was for our kids to get to know their cousins better.
I felt like I left with one stronger friendship and one new one, making it all the harder to say good-bye.