Antelope Island | Great Salt Lake National Park
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Antelope Island | Great Salt Lake National Park

On the Salt Road

“If you’re not living on the edge, you’re taking up too much space.” ~ Unknown

Before we hit the Salt Road we experienced sunrise at Dead Horse Point State Park. The stuff of Thelma & Louise again, some photography to get these rather dramatic images of the overlook of the Colorado River and Canyonlands National Park. It was a most fabulous way to start the day. All alone. With quite a canvas.

This is an excerpt from a 2012 blog post. You can read the full story with more images here.

It was then time to hit the road north. The Salt Road. Now firmly on our way to SL,UT. Trace’s new most favorite abbreviation… many, many apologies… our Salt Lake friends (waving to ya’ Crystal!!) will understand. The drive was simply stunning. And the Roadside America attractions almost more than we can stand – almost. First stop…Price.

For the…of all things…Eastern Prehistoric Museum. For we were firmly in dinosaurus landus. We were there to see the Utahraptor, the slashing fiend (really…) It stole the thunder from the original museum mascot, Al the Allosaurus, (again…really…) with his arrival just prior to the release of the movie Jurassic Park. The fictional raptors in that movie were actually brought to reality with the discovery of Utahraptor. And just so you know we’re on the up and up – all this is taken from the Museum’s website. Sadly though, it was a Sunday and the museum closed. Next time, Price.

Next time. Although if we’re being honest we were just a little bit fine with not going inside mainly because of the welcome outside. The bronzed raptor on display at the entrance to the parking lot somewhere between slightly horrifying and crazed. But the cannibal dino statue at the front doors fulfilled all RA expectations and then some.

Next stop… was Spanish Fork Utah. For, what else… to see the Krishna Lotus Temple. Fabulous. And so random. And so us. We had no time to stop in for a bite to eat and a tour. But next time. The next trip will be dedicated to our next time’s.

Next we hit Provo to find the Brigham Young University and a giant Y up on hill that we wanted climb and have our photos on. Y. Why not? Until we saw how high the climb up was. Next time. Yeah right. Next time.

We kept on trucking up the highway. Hanging out the window, doing our drive-bys. Those majestic mountains getting closer and closer. From all sides. It was sublime up here.

And then…. drum roll please…f or we were at our last and greatest RA stop for this leg of the race. And we dedicate this to our most fabulous friend Narelle – AND of course it is dedicated to ourselves and to our love of all things 80’s… we hit Lehi. Anyone? Anyone?

Hello Kevin Bacon

Lehi Roller Mills was immortalized in the 1984 film Footlose. (Oh and just in case you were tempted… DON’T watch the remake…even if you’re stuck on a plane for 14 hours…don’t do it!). The mills were featured as Kevin Bacon’s workplace and as the site of “the dance”. At the time the film was made, Lehi Roller Mills was surrounded by nothing but vacant fields. We remember one scene, where John Lithgow and Dianne Wiest keep a wary eye on the proceedings while standing in a field some distance away. We tried to replicate said scene (along with many others… not be shown here on the blog. Or ever.) But most of the area is now home to fast food restaurants and a shopping center.

BUT the Roller Mills were definitely still there…Thankfully. And just in case you ever feel like replicating Kevin, here’s what we NOW like to do in the office on at least a weekly basis (it’s a hopelessly bad copy but you get the gist, and can especially understand how much in love we are with the end bubble wrap bit…)

With Lehi now in the dust and the entire Footloose soundtrack on loop we eventually hit Salt Lake City. And we arrived on Superbowl Sunday to finally and very excitedly meet up with Em and Erin who will join us for part 2 of the trip, which heads north and then south, way south to Vegas. We catch up over the SuperBowl and LOADS of snacks (and dreams of more to come…after a quick trip to Wholefoods) and a very controversial Madonna. It was 1-3 in favor of Madge (I was the 1…) And catching up was like no time had passed even though it had been way more than 6 months. Downtown HoJo didn’t seem all that bad with good company.

The last time we were here in SLC, we spent a lot more time in photos, taking in The Temple and photographing around town. So this trip was mostly about getting some jobs done before the next part of the road trip (ie; the purchase of snow chains, just in case, and again more drop-ins to Wholefoods) and catching up with dear, mad friends. We still couldn’t resist a quick drive by though…

And a quick stop at the State Capitol by night.

After a lumpy sleep in the HOJO beds the next morning the 4 of us headed off to Great Salt Lake National Park and over to Antelope Island. We’d been told that Great Salt Lake was one of the least photogenic parks in the States. We were hoping to prove that wrong. And here’s what we came up with. A morning dedicated to pinks and purples, then gold and yellows. Something in every shade. So loved the layering of nature here.

Mountains peeking through the pre-dawn mist…the color blending both lake and land.

And then the sun was up and the pinks gave way to golds. And we saw we were surrounded by Buffalo. As we were on Buffalo Point…Should have perhaps noted the correlation between the sign and it’s meaning a little earlier on. As yes, there were slumbering Buff’s all around. And now in hindsight we realise this is where the start of the Bison obsession would begin. Sooooooo much more to come on that front. So much more.

And so the first of our series of bison photos…Not a real bison. Not yet.

With the start of the day came some chores, shopping and odd jobs. We split off, with E&E going one way and us the other. And for Trace and I that meant a lovely lunch with the very delightful Crystal. One of SLC’s most talented photographers. And creator of the fabulous Pure Actions. Nearing 50,000 Facebook Fans she’s so all that. Destination: the Cheesecake Factory. Total all-time fave. We were sooooo there. We all met in Nashville last year at Tiff & Miles most gorgeous Wedding and have kept in touch since. Make sure to check out her actions here… She’s a total superstar and a beautiful person. And we had so much fun catching up and hearing about life in SLC. Thankfully we wouldn’t have to wait long to meet again as she was also Vegas bound for WPPI. Oh. Yeah. So with not any room left for dessert we farewelled with dreams of bright lights and Vegas just around the corner and a few remaining errands to do… like finallygettingaphonethatreallyworks.

Sunset over SLC was quiet and pretty in pink. And you wouldn’t think it possible but it was soon time to dine again. In quite the most incredible venue.

To cap off the day we met back up with E&E who had a surprise for us. And you know, we are all about a good surprise. For they were taking us out. And not just taking us anywhere. Oh, no lordy, no. They were taking us out to… none other than… DEE’S RESTAURANT. Because of course there is one. And it’s in SLC. And we were sooooo very there. For the photo op’s out front and the banana cream pie inside. At Dee’s we had the most pleasant waiter. Very informative. Very taken with all of us and our accents, back-stories and wanderings. But most upset for our husbands, who must be devastated, having to be home alone to fend for themselves. Goodness. We felt a bit sorry for all of them too by the end of girl’s night.

So many new (somewhat tragic) profile pics to choose from…what’s a girl to do?

Apparently the road to Dee’s Restaurant was set in motion after we pulled our own rather terrific New Year’s surprise on January 1, 2011 when we road-tripped our way through the granite belt to EMMAVILLE. Any town, place, shop, amusement, attraction, natural phenomena, with our namesake and we are always so very there. After all, it’s nice to have a name for yourself.

And then with Dee’s barely a distant memory the road was again calling. This time for Wyoming. Jackson Hole we are on our way.

Keywords: Dee's diner (2), Great Salt Lake National Park (2), latter day saints (2), mormon (2), salt lake city (2), sunrise (8), temple (2).

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