The tent was flapping, whipping, and shimmying around us as we were trying to fall asleep from a tiring day. These late spring winds were not abating after sunset as we had hoped, but instead seemed to be picking up speed. In one exuberant moment, a 55-mph gust tore the tent stakes from the ground on one side and bent the poles, releasing them from their support pins. A parachute of nylon engulfed Nicole and me in our sleeping bags as we laughed until we cried.
The other tent’s occupants had already begun disassembling their poles in an attempt to avert damage. Our fifth member was ensconced in the back seat of the Subaru in his bag, being the wisest of all. We were miles out in the desert on BLM (Bureau of Land Management) land, far far from any alternatives for sleeping that night. Driving fifteen miles to the ghost motel (deserted Rodeway Inn) came up as an option, but we elected to sleep ON our tents instead, and burrow as deeply into the sleeping bag as possible in order to avoid massive exfoliation from the stinging airborne grains. I wanted to at least peek at the Milky Way spanning the dark skies above, but that was also a hopeless prospect. Let us say simply that nobody slept much that night, and Nicole’s pillow blew away.
Enjoy the Capitol Reef Album I created for Facebook!