Sunday, June 8, 2008

Utah Salt Flats

One last update before Road Trip USA is over...

We drove from Yellowstone to Salt Lake City on Friday afternoon (last week), admiring the potato fields and mountains, and set off Saturday across the lonely stretches of Utah and Nevada. Utah in particular was surprisingly fascinating, thanks to the Bonneville Salt Flats. They look, more or less, like this-
The reason this was exciting was because of the reflection you can see there. For a long while we weren't certain what the reflection was, exactly, but soon enough we realized it was a thin layer of water a few inches thick. Naturally we had to pull over and check it out...

For those who are wondering, the water was pretty warm and we washed our feet off afterwards as the water was really, really salty upon taste sampling. Oh, and the place we're standing is a few miles in front of the track where they set the world speed records every year. The water evaporates evenly, meaning the remaining salt is perfectly smooth for miles and miles around.
Another shot of the salt flat lakes. Really lovely.
As a last photo, here is a very odd sculpture spotted on the side of the road in the middle of the salt flats. Internet searching revealed it to be called Metaphor: The Tree of Utah, and is primarily interesting to me because it's the only landmark in the miles and miles of desolation.

After the Salt Flats there was nothing much except Nevada, which is more remoteness and not particularly exciting. We spent the night in Reno, Nevada, which is depressing in itself because I have had statistics drilled into me enough to find casinos silly and the people who throw away their money tragic...

Anyway, I've been on my SETI job for a few days now but have been super-duper busy so I'm behind. Don't worry, I'll catch up soon enough, but the long and short of it is this is the last post of Road Trip USA. And I must say, it really is fun to drive across America and see what it's like. This country varies an incredible amount, meaning there's always something new to see, and my family gets along pretty well so the company was good too!

Alrighty, it's getting late even here on the West Coast so I'll write about California later. Cheers!