Following a several days of 4 wheeling through the deserts of southeastern Utah. We decided to head for higher ground and cooler temps.
Turning east off of US 191 onto Old Airport Rd. about 7 ½ miles from central Moab, we began our climb out of Spanish Valley and up the slopes of the LaSal Mountains on the LaSal Pass 4X4 road via short sections on Geyser Pass road and Pack Creek road. At one spot on the road we encountered a golden eagle having dinner. We had barely stopped when he flew directly towards us and I had just a moment to try to get a shot of him as he flew right past the window of my Suburban about 10 feet from me. The photo was blurred but you can still make him out.
The sandstone face of the Moab area quickly gives way to the lush greenery of mountain meadows, groves of Aspen and tall stands of pine. Cooler temps and clouds of mosquitoes soon engulfed us! Out came the OFF! After stopping briefly at the top of the pass, we descended about a mile down the east side of the pass and set up camp in a great stand of pines about 500 yards from Medicine Lakes. These small lakes are more like ponds but the water was flowing through them from the snow still melting high on the sides of Mt Peale to our north and South Mountains to our south and the trout were feeding in earnest.
We spent 2 nights there fishing the lake, shooting photos of the mountains, meadows and flowers, and took a 4X4 Jaunt down the east side of LaSal Pass and then circled around the base of the South Mountains, swinging south and west. On the exact opposite side of the South Mountains from our camp we wound our way up a very scenic one way mining road to a point just short of the top of the mountain. What a view to the southwest and Canyonlands National Park, Needles District.
Breaking camp after our second night at Medicine Lakes, we descended back down the west side of LaSal Pass, back to Moab and a camp site along the Colorado River in the canyon a few miles upstream of Moab.
The mileage from US 191 to the top of LaSal Pass is about 20 miles one way and requires a 4 wheel drive vehicle. Our total mileage for 3 days and 2 nights with side trips was about 90 miles.