The Day I Nearly Died Three Times

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I have to pause my blog post that ties up the last part of our #LazyRVAdventure to tell you about our time at Arches National Park.  Hands down this national park has THE best entrance.  It is simply amazing!

As soon as you pass the entrance gates, you start to wind up a steep mountain of red rock.

Mouth agape, I couldn’t believe the beauty of this park entrance.  Up we climbed past the beautiful red sandstone until we reached the top and could see a mountain range in the distance.  Wow!

Along the rest of our drive to our campsite, we drove past spectacular natural stone arches, soaring pinnacles and giant balanced rocks.  It was stunning!

By the time we got to the campground and got settled into our site, it was almost sunset.  The rocks were taking on deeper shades of red with the lowering of the sun.  I just couldn’t believe how beautiful this park was!

The kids had taken off to climb on the amazing rock formations in front of our campsite, as we could see many other people climbing and walking on them when we pulled in.

Seeing a bunch of adults sitting on top of a tall range of rocks waiting for the sun to set gave me an itch to get up to the top of the rock and watch the sun set too. You know how I love sunsets!

I told Lazy Dad I was headed to see the sunset and walked through the campsite across from ours to get to the base of the rock formation.  It didn’t look too bad; I figured I could do it.  So, I started walking up the side of the rock.  I noticed the adults on top of the rock had taken note that I was headed their way and my kids were scampering nearby on other rocks and they cheered me on. “Keep going mommy!  You can do it!”

It started getting a bit steeper, but, determined to see that sunset, I stopped to hike my big girl panties up and kept climbing….. Until it was so steep I was starting to fear for my life.  I stopped to reassess my approach.  Maybe it would be less steep more to the right?  I adjusted my position and started praying I wouldn’t fall to my death.

I continued my trek up the side of the rock, but at this point it was too steep to walk uprightly.  I needed my hands to pull me up as I walked, but my butt was way to big to stick up in the air and remain on my feet simultaneously.  How did those adults do this?  I thought to myself.  Glancing up I noticed they were watching me.  So I dropped my butt from the air and literally started crawling on my hands and knees up the side of this giant rock.  Huffing and puffing and sweating.  I nearly died three times along the way.  No lie.

Knowing I had an audience of onlookers from the top of the mountain, I started shouting between huffs.  “Don’t judge me!”  “I think I’m slipping!”  “I’m gonna DIE!”  But they all just quietly looked on.  No words of encouragement… no hand to offer me up.  Just a loud-mouthed fat woman trying to climb up an incline of death.  My shouts and panting were my only companions.

Finally, after nearly dying three times (did I mention that?), I no sooner arrived on hands and knees at the top of the rock and stood on my own two feet shouting “Hallelujah! I’m alive!” when one of the adults said, “You know… you could have just walked through campsite 16  and walked right up the rock over there.” She pointed behind her where the rocks made an almost perfect staircase up to the top of the rock I had just climbed up the side of (and nearly died three times along the way).

Before I could think about how my response might have sounded, I huffed out, “Well, aren’t you just so sweet to tell me that NOW!”  Realizing that sounded kind of rude, I just laughed between silent inner sobs of embarrassment.

But the view from the top of the rock was worth it (even if I did nearly die three times).

Notice in the picture the right side of the rock… which is where I crawled up and how it drops off in utter sheerness!

But I saw the sunset!

And the 360 degree view was spectacular!

I would totally go back to Arches National Park (even if I did nearly die three times). I think it’s my favorite national park from our trip.  We only got to spend overnight there and we missed seeing so many of the arches you can hike to.  I highly recommend visiting this park!

Just… ask someone how they got to the top of a rock before you climb it!

The Lazy Mom

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