Those scenic posters we hang above our desks provide for more than a pretty picture. A simple wall hanging can allow our minds to wander and daydream of “a better place” on those tough days at the office. Some of us have posters of the Eiffel Tower, while others might have a photo of some exotic, sandy beach.
For years, Mark had two posters that decorated his office. One was of White Sands, a magical place that many New Mexicans love and have had the pleasure of visiting. The other poster was of “Anasazi Indian Ruins,” and that was all that the poster’s label read. There were many days that he’d get “lost” looking at that image, thinking how amazing it would be to visit a place like that someday.
That’s the view of the poster that I had in my office. I’ve always thought about how amazing it would be to go there someday and see that view for myself.
Further research showed that there is a hiking trail that takes you to this beautiful cultural site with its poster-worthy views. Because it is a sensitive cultural site, the trail is not publicized by the Park Service in an attempt to better preserve it. However, through the power of the Internet, many people have shared some details about the hike and this incredible destination. Additionally, once you get to the visitor center at Canyonlands and you ask sweetly, the park rangers are willing to share more information about the trail.
Armed with details about the trail and a deep desire to see this amazing site firsthand, Mark led us for an awe-inspiring adventure. We scaled down dry river beds and climbing up loose sandstone rocks. The final destination was hidden beneath a cliff and was not easy to pinpoint. While the trail was somewhat primitive, people have been gracious enough to leave cairn markers that make it easier to navigate. I would have taken more photos, but Mark was too eager to allow breaks along the hike.
With the rough terrain to navigate and hot temperatures that soared into the mid 90s, thankfully it was a short 3-mile hiking tail. Of course, once you arrive at this ancient lookout, you just sit back and soak in the views. Seeing it in person is more beautiful than a nicely-framed picture hanging in your office.
Once we completed our hike, there was still more to experience of the 8th park in our 12-park tour. Canyonlands is a massive park and there are some spectacular sites to see of where and how the Green and Colorado rivers converge. While there are places where you can see for miles and miles, we were only able to enjoy a small portion of the park. I supposed we’ll just have to return to see and do more.