Okay, get ready for a boatload of photos! Our first full day in Utah, Herb took us to explore some of the Morrison Formation. This type of desert landscape is all over Utah and consists of mostly purple and white banded hills with rocky outcroppings. Herb informed us that here be dinosaur fossils!
I was also thankful I had a goat on the downhill side to steady me as we hiked along this precarious hillside. The rocks were very unstable and one slip could have caused a sprained angle or even a long, painful tumble.
This is one of those “almost-worked-out” photos that Finn and I managed to botch. See Herb and Woodstock framed in the archway? They are the intended subject matter. When Phil told me to call Finn, I thought he meant he wanted Finn to look through the rocks. But Phil actually wanted me to call Finn away so he could get a nice shot of Herb. Now we’ve got Finn’s throat in the shot. Oh well. Not every artistic endeavor is destined to succeed.
This is not the most interesting photo in the world, but it reminds me of something that greatly affected our hike but which can’t be seen in the photos: Gnats! Yes, we were endlessly gnettled by an ignfestation of gnasty, gnefarious gnats which gnawed on our gnoggins and our poor goats’ gnethers. (According to Herb, every word that began with the letter “N” must be preceded by the letter “G” (pronounced) to emphasize that fact that the word “gnat” is ridiculous.) The people wore “gnat gnets,” but there was gnothing to protect the goats. We were surprised to see Finn suddenly lie down with his load mid-morning on this dirt pile. At first I thought maybe he was sick, but it turned out he was trying to scratch his belly on the ground.
An altercation occurred when Finn finally ran out of patience with Herb’s dog, Luna. She teased and pestered Finn and Sputnik every time they stopped, and both goats kept warning her off with their horns. Finn finally snapped and rammed her in the ribs. She howled as if every bone on that side was broken, but I think she mostly just wanted Herb to acknowledge her suffering because she stopped crying as soon as Herb checked our her “injuries”. She was fine five minutes later, silly dog!
It looks like we’re in the middle of nowhere in a trackless desert, but believe it or not, we’re almost back to the truck. It was a great day of hiking. We found many interesting rocks and fossils, including a few that were worth bringing home to my curio cabinet. What a wonderful excursion!