Friday, April 22, 2016

Hiking Hanging Garden And Other Lake Powell Stuff

From Wahweap Campground at Lake Powell, Page, Arizona     Dave and Sherry, new friends we made a few weeks ago at Camp Verde, Arizona rearranged their travel plans to be at Lake Powell while we were there. Pam, Ernie, Joyce, Charlie, Wayne and I were thrilled to have them among us. Our time together will be limited though as they have several stops planned in the next few weeks before they store their coach in Yuma and fly home to Alaska. We welcomed them with a picnic lunch on Friday, April 22nd and talked about what we'd do while we're all together.

An easy 940 foot round-trip hike called "Hanging Garden" intrigued us so on a very warm afternoon, Sherry, Dave, Pam, Ernie, Joyce, Charlie and I loaded into a couple of vehicles to check it out. Wayne sat this one out.  Hanging Garden is a quarter mile from Glen Canyon Dam, just off Highway 89. We parked, found the trail head and made our way along the rock and sand to find the mysterious place in the desert.

Dave and Sherry along the rocky, sandy trail to Hanging Garden in Page, Arizona

Which way?  Joyce (looking down), Sherry (pointing forward), Ernie (incognito in white cap), Dave (scratching head), Pam (pointing up) and Charlie (oblivious to it all) looking checking all directions for the Hanging Garden. 

More of the same strange behavior. 
But alas! As promised, the trail delivered us upward and into a cavernous part of a huge limestone bluff where we found a moist wall of lush green fern.  So it is a hanging garden of sorts.

Ah ha! I am "in the hanging garden"...

But sometimes a beautiful sight doesn't require a hike. That's the case in the picture below. Pam pointed this rising full moon out during an evening walk with Ernie. We both raced for cameras in hopes of capturing the very best shot. Mine isn't clear but worth saving.

From Wahweap Campground Loop C. Southwesterly view of Tower Butte.

As always, eating is an important of our entertainment. One evening, for pizza, we gathered at the Canyon King Pizzeria which is, in fact, a restaurant housed in a landlocked paddle wheeler. It's featured on the Roadside America website that lists oddities along America's highways. There's some interesting history about this ship's former working life on Lake Powell but I forgot the details. It was an interesting place and the food was pretty good.

Joyce (L) and me (R) at the bar of Canyon King Pizzeria
Another restaurant we like and visited a few times was The Dam Bar and Grille located in the Dam Plaza. The food was good and the prices were reasonable. One of the menu items is a "Dam Big Burger". A large open, boisterous place, the decor, especially the wall at the far end looks like the wall at Glen Canyon Dam which gives one the feeling of eating at the bottom of the dam.

Around the table, left to right at The Dam Bar... Dave, Sherry, Ernie, Pam, Joyce and Charlie (barely seen) and the Wayner.
Surprisingly, Lake Powell National Golf Course in Page provided a lush and green setting in the midst of desert red rock. Pam, Ernie, Wayne and I played one of the rare afternoons without either wind or rain. Weather here has been disappointing to say the least.

Wayne is lining up for the putt while Pam looks on.

View from the course looking toward Lake Powell

Sherry and Dave ended up extending their stay by three extra days, I think. Once because they wanted to and then another one or two because of high winds that made driving high profile vehicles dangerous.  We had a great time all the way up to the very last evening together.

Saying goodbye to Sherry and Dave on their last evening with us.   Left to right, Sherry, Joyce and Pam.
 Desert flowers are pretty nice here this year. I suppose it's all the rain. Here are a couple of them.

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