After our time at Penny Ranch, our dearest friends and ex-fellow Idyllwild neighbors The Ellsworths (who had left the mountain to live life on the road in a 5th wheel) happened to be camping just down the valley at Provo Lake. So we headed down for a few days of that sweet 5th wheel life with them before continuing the long road east.
^ Grace and Chuck, BFFs.
^ I had been (not so) subtly hinting for months that I wanted Jaclyn to cut her hair short again...well apparently in this case, peer pressure is a wonderful thing as Lyndzee rallied to my cause. Before we knew it an appointment had been booked with one of Lyndzee's friends in Provo and they were off to get her snipped. Above, Jasper touching mommy's hair one last time.
^ Campground hangs while I anxiously awaiting Jaclyn to get back from her haircut...
- - -
The road east begins.
- - -
^ A loooong day of driving and we ended up pulling into a random motel somewhere outside of Bryce Canyon National Park.
^ Went out in the AM for a little exploratory walk with Jasper and we got caught in a summer downpour.
^ Quick stop at Bryce Canyon. Jasper's review: "Wow, look, more red rocks."
^ Outside of Bryce we spotted a herd of Pronghorn Antelopes, the 2nd fastest land animal in the world. Also, the Xpan is not a great camera for shooting wildlife.
^ Torrential rainstorms, lighting, thunder, etc. made the road slow going.
^ Road weary, trying to console ourselves with middle of nowhere Thai food.
- - -
The Grand Canyon.
In Flagstaff, Arizona we met up with my parents who had driven out from Southern California to hang with us for a few days. We had a wedding to photograph in Flagstaff so not only did we get some great quality time all together, they were able to watch the kiddos while we went to work. I'm so blessed to have parents who love the outdoors, love us and our children, and have flexible schedules that allow them to accommodate some of these crazy plans we hatch. Our first day together was spent hiking down to Ooh Ahh Point on the South Kaibab Trail in the Grand Canyon.
- - -
^ My mom freaks over hights so watching her squirm on the edge of the canyon was a nonstop source of entertainment.
^ Jasper is 100% boy. As demonstrated in this photo where he manages to simultaneously kick rocks on the ground whilst throwing handfuls of rocks haphazardly into the sky above him.
^ Heading back to Flagstaff from the Grand Canyon during magic hour. The high elevations of Arizona are truly stunning.
^ Since we were coming from the other direction I didn't realize we were on the same highway as the teeny tiny Chapel of The Holy Dove where I had been the year before to photograph Susan and Jake's Elopement.
- - -
Rock climbing gym day. I swear the kids could do this all day every day if we could afford it.
- - -
- - -
Said our goodbyes to my parents, then we were eastward bound towards home in Nashville. Initially when we hatched this crazy plan we had planned on leaving Flagstaff and really taking our time to explore some places between the west and the east that we sped by on our move out to Nashville. What we hadn't accounted for was just how road weary and homesick we and especially the kids would be by this point. By the time we left Flagstaff the kids hadn't been home for 6 weeks! They are absolute troopers when it comes to traveling, but we could tell they were longing for home. So instead of a "adventure paced" drive east like we had planned, for the second time in 6 months, we were essentially booking it across the country again. For three days straight the formula was the same: drive, eat crappy middle of nowhere food, get back on I-40 East, gas, more crappy food, middle of nowhere hotel, and repeat.
- - -
^ Breakfast for dinner at a truck stop Denny's.
^ Jasper is a master of finding change. Every place we go he is on all fours digging around under counters and displays looking for change. He also learned this trick that if you put a knife in the coin slot of a video game machine you can jiggle loose any stuck change. Here he demonstrates the technique in a truck stop. This particular machine netted him $3!
^ Eating at an Olive Garden in Podunk Oklahoma, had my Leica on the table, random teenage server dude comes up out of he blue and asks "is that 8mm?"
Me: "nope it's 35mm"
Server: "awesome, I've never been on 35mm, can you take a picture of me on it?"
Me: "uh sure"
Server picks up a fork and knife off our table, crosses them across his chest all thug like and waits for me to take a pic.
^ One of my favorite things about Jaclyn is that while she's a full blown health-whole-organic-non GMO-hippiedippie-food advocate, there's a hidden 'murica girl inside of her that is awakened anytime we're on road trips and she sees anywhere with fast food french fries or an Olive Garden. Unlimited BREADSTIIIIIICKS!!!
^ Aaaaaaaalmost there...so ready to get home. I-40 is long.
* Hasselblad X-Pan + 45mm f4 / Leica M6 + 35mm f1.4 Nokton / Nikon F3 + 28mm F2 and 50mm F1.8 / Contax T2 / Hasselblad 500cm + 80mm f2.8 Planar
Kodak Tri-X developed at home in Rodinal and scanned on Pakon / Kodak Gold 200 / Kodak Portra 400