Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Hogback

One more story from Utah.  On the day Mac fished at Calf Creek we were really on our way to an Anasazi village.  To get there we drove scenic route 12, a bypass that runs from Highway 89 to the town of Torrey about a 124 miles away.  It passes through some beautiful scenery, you'll see the remains of ancient seabeds, alpine forests, pink and red stone turrets and sagebrush flats.  It's the road that goes to Bryce and to the town of Tropic where we were staying.
So up bright and early one morning we took off, stopped for ice in Escalante where they have a teeny, tiny petrified forest (we had visited it last year) and off into new territory for us.  We stopped at the Escalante River where Mac talked to a forest ranger who advised him that the fishing was better on the Calf Creek, and it was.  There's a 126 foot waterfall that many people were hiking to, but Mac was after fish and I wanted to paint.
After the fishing we headed back onto Route 12 in search of the Anasazi State Park.  Immediately the road started climbing with rather deep drop-offs on the far side of the road.  At this point I need to tell you I have a morbid fear of heights, not just a fear, an absolute terror of them.  And scenic Route 12 turned into a nightmare.  It was just a narrow 2 lane road with little or no shoulders, no guard rails and a sheer drop off on BOTH sides.  I was terrified, I began to shake and cry, Mac asked if I wanted to turn around and I said YES!  We had to wait for a turn-out and even that scared me, had to close my eyes and not watch while he backed up.  Then back down the way we'd come, me crying the whole way.
When we got back to our cabin I Googled The Hogback and found that people either loved this road, found it exhilarating or were terrified by it like me.  Like I said, I don't do heights and if I do there had better be guard rails, lots of them, high ones.
No photos, my eyes were closed.  But here's the painting I did at Calf Creek.


  1. I've been on a road like that, in Nevada, my brother driving. He had no pity. Thank you Mr. Mac for going back.

  2. What a wonderful painting !
    You always show Mr. Mac's but I have never seen one of yours.
    Fabulous !

    cheers, parsnip

  3. We call them Sky Roads, they can be quite un-nerving especially the steep and narrow single lane ones. Quite a few people make a request to get out and walk rather than stay in the car.

  4. I did ask to get out, but Mac was afraid I'd just sit down in the road and refuse to move and he was probably right.

  5. I am so sorry that you had such a frightening experience. I can imagine that you were very scared. Glad that you got down safe and sound. xx

  6. Oh my goodness, that sounds terrible. I'm just the same, though I don't think I've ever been on a road with a sheer drop on both sides. I'm bad enough with a drop on one side. You do get some great views and beautiful scenery but it doesn't make up for the terror you feel.

  7. You have my sympathy - narrow roads with sheer drops are definitely to be avoided however scenic they might be!

  8. I love seeing photos of roads like these, but my fear of heights would leave me paralyzed -- not knowing which way to lean, if there were drop-offs on BOTH sides!

  9. Our roads in W V can be pretty bad but this sound terrifying. So glad you were able to turn around.


A Bit of a Milestone

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