July 11, 2011

trekking the great salt lake.

Spiral Jetty
     For the 4th of July  Jason and I had another four day weekend, which you know what that means— more adventures. You can’t really go too far with less than four whole days, so of course, we took another trip to Utah. There always seems to be something new to do there. Saturday was Salt Lake day.
At the beginning of the spiral
     Jason had read about something called the Spiral Jetty made by artist Robert Smithson. It is a rock formation of a giant swirl in the Great Salt Lake. I thought it sounded pretty awesome and I love art, so off we went. This piece of art was created in 1970. When it was first formed, the rocks were all above the water. When we visited, most of it was underwater, but still close enough to the surface that you can see it from higher ground and you can walk around the entire spiral without the water passing your waist.
And that is exactly what Jason did. 

     We walked out to where it started to curve into the spiral and I asked, “How far are you going?” and Jason replied, “Oh, I’m going all the way!” A bit of information you may want to know if you’re wanting to walk the spiral: wear shoes. The first part of the path has a lot of sand to walk on, but the rest is mostly pointy basalt rock.
At the end of the spiral
     It was pretty neat for me to visit the lake because I had just learned about it in my Geography class last semester. I learned that the only thing that can live in the lake is Brine Shrimp. Along the pathway of the Jetty, we saw tons of shrimp just gliding across the water. No big deal.
Brine Shrimp
     When Jason finally reached the end of the spiral, he felt very accomplished. Then...he cut across to where I was standing instead of going around again. I don’t think his feet could take much more of the rocks. After we dried our feet, we climbed up a big hill to get a better full view of the Jetty. It was really beautiful.
Longview of Spiral Jetty
     Next we headed to Antelope Island. I don’t think we really knew what to expect on Antelope Island and we weren’t prepared for the worst. First, when we received a brochure, (after paying $9 to get on the island) I realized that the gift shop was going to close at 6 and it was already 5:50! So the first thing we did was hurry to the shop to get a postcard to add to our collection. Also, while driving to get on the island, there were two distinct smells that were just awful! – One was the smell of algae and the other was rotten eggs. I hoped the whole island didn’t smell this way.

     We were kind of running out of time because it was getting late so we hiked to Buffalo Point, the highest point on the island (.5 miles). Jason had been warned about the bugs, but we kind of forgot until we encountered them ourselves. There were so many little gnats flying around that would land on you and buzz in your ears. The higher up we went on the mountain, the worse they got. The view from the top was really beautiful, but the gnats just made it unbearable. I felt like someone on Meth that thought there were bugs crawling under my skin because I was just twitching and smacking myself. I swear, I almost cried. When Jason and I were silent, you could hear the gnats humming. They sounded like an orchestra tuning its instruments. Also, there were supposed to be a bunch of different animals roaming around , but we didn’t see anything.

     When we had enough, we quickly left the mountain and the island and went home. While driving, I noticed a red spot on my neck and then looked at Jason’s arms, those darn gnats were biting us! We found spots on our arms, necks, legs, ears, and my scalp. When we got home, I had the best shower of my life. I washed and scrubbed my hair. Ugh! So gross! Was Antelope Island worth it? Probably not. Although the views were nice, I can't see myself going back.

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