Saturday, July 19, 2008

Flaming Gorge Dam

Finally getting caught up on our business we decided to have an exploration/fun day and drive to the dam. There we could go on the tour and then make stops on the way back, checking out Red Canyon and several bike trails.

The drive to the dam was about 50 miles. To get here we had to drive through the heart of the Unita mountains. It was a nice change of pace to leave the desert and travel into ponderosa forests. When we got to the dam we hurried to the tour guide to sign up, only to be told we had to wait for the next tour as the ten oclock tour was full.

Much to my horror, the ten thirty tour was full of juvenile deliquents. It seems the probation officers had decided it would be a good idea to take their charges on a dam tour. It was just like being back in the classroom. The future cons were rude and crude to the tour guide, and barely under control of their chaperones. Renita smirked and looked at me and knew exactly what I was thinking.....

Regardless we contiued on and actually enjoyed the tour by hanging back, and then asking lots of questions, boring them to death, As we entered the dam it smelled exactly like the Mcdonald Observatory and the USS Alabama. It seems like all the world runs on machine oil!

After touring the interior we walked on a platform, at the bottom of the dam, where you could feed rainbow, cutthroat, and brown trout. They were awaiting their free food and swarmed greedily as people threw fish food pellets onto the waters surface. No teenagers or retired people were thrown over the rails and into the river, so we returned to the visitor center. There we relaxed and I took my hand from my billfold, feeling safe for the first time in an hour.

Drivng back we decided to take the road to Red Canyon Lodge. There we had a nice lunch and got a window seat next to the bird feeders. Ruby throated and black chinned hummingbirds entertained us, along with red crossbills,hoary redpolls, and an occasional pine siskin. It was really nice, as we have never been so close to hummingbirds.

After lunch Renita took over the mountain driving and expertly downshited the truck as we decended to the desert. All in all the day included a beautiful drive, an interesting tour, and a nice lunch. A fine time! Clear skies.

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