Saturday, July 09, 2016

Fiery Furnace

Somehow I was given the tip to book a ranger-led hike through the Fiery Furance section of Arches.  This section of the park is absolutely incredible- a maze of huge rock formations in which one could very easily get lost.  For this reason, most folks have to have a guide to even enter this section of the park, and for those who want to hike it alone, there are only so many permits given out each day after those folks watch an extensive presentation about what it takes to navigate this area.

Our ranger led us through a fascinating hike while teaching us about the biology, geology and topography of the park.  We also learned great skills of how to walk around and among these formations safely while having fun.  This was a long, sometimes intense, hike, but I'm so glad we did it first thing.  The information we learned and experience we gained from this hike helped us enjoy the rest of the park for days to come.

Pausing to learn important lessons about the rocks around us!

An easier section of the hike (I wasn't able to take photos on much of the tough parts)...
Watching my kid climb this rock face was a moment of excitement and pride for sure!  He was so willing to listen to the instructions and then give some of these tough climbs a try!
Berkley was definitely the youngest member of our group (and probably the most inquistive), so we hung toward the back of the hike so we wouldn't hold anyone up.  There were a lot of spots where we had to walk single file through small spaces, so it was easier on everyone for our family to be in the back.
We all climbed through this billion years old hole in the side of the rock wall!

Walking around and through beautiful arches tucked into this maze of a hike...
Our ranger led us through a small thoughtful moment (almost like a devotion) in which she quoted what Edward Abbey once wrote about Arches...
'If this ring of stone is marvelous, then all that shaped it is marvelous."  Amen.
Learning more about the wildlife found in this area of our country.
Out of everyone in our group, Berkley definitely fit best through this small space!
And his size allowed for him to crawl through spaces that the rest of us had to walk around or over!
Sitting with my boy under Surprise Arch- a gigantic arch that seemed to appear out of nowhere!

Heading back out of the Fiery Furnace, tired but much better off for the experience.  We learned so much and fell in love with this area very hard and very fast!
Ready to discover even more about the beautiful and mysterious Arches National Park!

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