|Last view of Redfish Lake|
START: 1016 miles.
At Highway 75 I turn right to go south. As I go, I stop a few places to take some photographs. The moutnains and trees start to thin a little. After about 30 minutes an antelope crosses the street in front of me. I stop the car. I back the car up into a gravel area off the road. I get out and attempt to get some pictures of the herd of antelope but by this time they had kind of run off. The road heads up and up and near the top I can see the valley I had just driven through, below me.
|The Valley Below|
I continue on Highway 75 further and further from human occupation. I start to get a little worried that maybe I somehow missed Interstate 84, which I am supposed to get onto eventually. I pull off and consult my road map and all still seems to be well, so I continue on the road, which travels through a lava field. The road stretches on and on and seems to be going nowhere. I still have 1/3 tank of gas, but now I am getting a little nervous. There is very little traffic, no services and it is very, very hot and dusty. The road flattens further and becomes more desolate and desert-like. Eventually, the desert ends and farmland spreads out before me, golden and green fields.
|Dry Open Road|
At 1,254 miles into my road trip, I cross into Utah in the middle of nowhere, a sign and a change in the pavement tell me this. After quite some time, the vastness closes up as the mountains crop up larger and closer and I see rocky mountains ahead and I hope I am close to Salt Lake City. Below me, a valley flattens out amongst the rocky mountains with houses, farm fields and streets neatly lined, nothing is dirty or messy or cluttered. The air smells perfumey like wildflowers, but I don't see any, only the farm crops in their neat rows. A large body of water appears to my right, the beginning of the Salt Lake. At a rest stop, I call my friend Mandy to let her know I am running a little late. She is going to feed her kids dinner before I arrive. I hope I won't hit too much rush hour traffic. I continue on.
|Nearing Salt Lake City|
|Salt Lake City|
Mandy drives me to the airport. We say goodbye. I check in and get to my gate and find a power outlet. There is much grumbling around me, I guess the thunderstorms had caused the cancellation or delay of many flights. A skinny, older man with a funny, pointed moustache complains to me about his canceled flight to Boise. He must go there to help his 90 year-old mother with her ranch. A woman with her teenage daughter, returning from a trip to Alaska, is trying to strike up a conversation with anyone around. She is alert and listening, eavesdropping, ready to comment or question at any opportunity that she can. She is nice and maybe, she is lonely. She lives in Albuquerque. The boy next to me is in eleventh grade and his father is a commercial pilot for Delta so he gets to fly all the time. He is returning from a trip to Portland where he was there for one day, to pick blackberries. He helps me connect my Mac to the internet, since I haven't yet figured out how to work it properly. They all swap stories about how they are stranded in the airport and soon realize that I may be the only one amongst them getting out of town on time.
There seems to be something lost between thought and speaking. Things that sound eloquent in your mind, in your thoughts, sound less so when spoken or written. Maybe this is why I like photography, it is so much easier for me to catch a glimpse as I saw it, for a moment or how I imagined it.
END: 1384 miles.
Stanley, ID to Salt Lake City, UT:
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