Haunting peace was carried on the wind.
It danced around and within me and floated across the ancient city.
A lone and unknown bird call echoed through the Juniper forest, as watchful eyes pierced my soul from every direction.
I wrapped my knit hood close, keeping the rain-chilled air that dropped 20 degrees within minutes from stinging my neck and ears.
Walking the path that followed the outside wall, which enclosed this vast village, I scanned the now rubble where once stood one of the largest Anasazi settlements within the region.
A village over 800 years old of 420 rooms, 100 kivas, and 14 towers surrounded me and time was bridged between then – the 1200’s – and now, as we became One.
At the Great Kiva I sat to connect, honor, and receive.
Wolf appeared within the fire-lit darkness, becoming the powerful man before me.
Brown skinned, black haired, bright eyed and clad in fur and talismans, Wolf hooded the head of this impressive figure of powerful, primal medicine.
I was privy to this sacred ceremony where the veils of time once again came down and his dance was for me.
A long dark furred cape was offered to me and wrapped around my soul.
I was cloaked in darkness that revealed the true light within.
Visions of pottery pieces flashed in my mind that I was told I would find.
I emerged with direction that led to painted green, white, and fingerprint-etched finds of my clan.
Pieces of my soul once again retrieved within the impressive four-acre ancient city of the 164,000 acres within Canyons of the Ancients.
Deeper embodiment of my thread is enriched with each woven filament that binds me within the collective tapestry.
Sands of time had merged at the neck of the hourglass where the point of power IS.
The wind and wash whispered of times long ago.
At times softly.
At times dramatically.
On our hike through the dry, deep streambed of the Grand Wash at the rocky sculpted heart of Capitol Reef yesterday, we were surrounded by ancient spirits and guardians watching us.
The deep canyon and narrows kept close eye as we explored.
Footsteps echoed between sandstone cliffs looming hundreds of feet above.
Blossoms and lizards greeted us along the way.
Naturally sculpted rock gardens invited us onto their sacred grounds.
Creatures etched in the stone walls came alive.
The Fremont River chimed in with the wind’s flow at the end of the wash.
And although we could not see the Bighorn sheep that are said to grace the high sandstone terraces of the canyon, we could sense them near and “seeing” us.
There was an air of majesty and mystical eeriness, especially when the wind suddenly spoke with a wild howl and burst through the canyon upon us with great force, only to disappear again from the nothingness it came from.
The flow shifted back and forth from tailwind to headwind constantly, as if the wind was playing with us, blowing my hair wildly around me and knocking off Dave’s hat.
It seemed excited for us to be there and tickled our souls with its ancient voice.
Once again we were taken to times long forgotten, but now once again remembered.
Yesterday we journeyed the short drive to the fourth of six incredible National Parks in the Utah circuit that we are exploring on our adventure. We’re beginning our fourth of six weeks here and now have a full week to discover the magick of Capitol Reef.
Our drive to Wonderland – yes, that’s the name of our RV park down the rabbit hole of Torrey, Utah that our Magick Bus has slipped into – was beautiful with expansive vistas and even a subtle rainbow cloud portal.
And our new portal we’ll be integrating from this week is a serene setting that offers an open view of grazing land with cattle and horses surrounded by snow capped mountain tops in the distance, which we can see through our “looking glass”.
After we settled in, we headed off for our first looks at Capitol Reef.
We were instantly taken by the majesty around us. Dave said there was almost too much to process because of the grandeur and variety of intermingling raw beauty and wonder everywhere.
It is truly a stunning park and one that even if you aren’t a hiker, you can easily enjoy by taking the 20+ mile scenic drive through the park, which there is a guide on that you can get at the visitor center.
We stopped in there to read up on some of the info and get our hands on our hiking options. Then set off on our first, short intro with the two mile roundtrip Capitol Gorge hike.
The drive just to get there was incredible….about 12 + miles of amazingness on the paved road taking you from one stunning vista and formation to another. The park is well marked so you know what everything is that you are looking at.
Then once you reach the end of the paved road, a two and a half mile dirt road takes you to the end where you can pick up Capitol Gorge or Golden Throne Trails. This drive is wow!
You are taken through these canyons where the rock walls (mostly sheer walls of multi-colored Navajo sandstone) are surrounding you all around and you can feel what it would have been like on the covered wagons traveling in here back in the days of the pioneers.
This drive and the hike was a great way to get our intros with the area. So many beautiful things to see, including the settlement areas of the Mormons where you can see the beautiful apple, peach, pear, and apricot tree orchards.
Capitol Gorge takes you through the deep canyon gorge that the pioneers once used since it was the only passable “road” through the Waterpocket Fold until 1964 when Hwy 24 was built. The gorge becomes narrow, with several areas having slot-like proportions you can explore.
The Pioneer Register is located on the canyon walls here and you can see remnants of the telegraph lines jutting from the rocks above, which were used in the late mid to late 19th and early 20th centuries when Mormon pioneers passed through the gorge.
Several hundred pioneers recorded their names and dates on the canyon walls, as they passed through the Capitol Wash road. One wonders how they got their names up so high – ladder, ropes, standing atop their wagons?
Before you reach the pioneers’ recordings, you will come to the petroglyph panel, near to the start of the hike, from the people who once lived here from about 300 to 1300 CE (Common Era) – and some even earlier, which are very cool.
They are similar to the three large, red pigment figures we saw the day before in Escalante on the Calf Creek Trail.
They are thought to be from the Fremont Indians – ancestors of the modern-day Hopi, Zuni, and Paiute tribes. It is believed that these petroglyphs depict maps, journeys, clan symbols, deities, animals, and calendars.
The hike will take you past a small arch, volcanic rock, and end at a sequence of water-filled potholes, water pockets, or “tanks” as they are called.
These water tanks, ranging from very small like the size of a bathroom sink, to very large like a swimming pool, acted as natural water basins, which played a vital role in the desert ecosystem. They collected and held the vital and essential water that the animals, plants, and indigenous people relied on to survive in the desert.
Interestingly, violet light was shining down on the main water tank in some of the photos captured…is something appearing within the light, or does it indicate the sacredness of these precious water sources?
On our walk back, a beautiful sparkling natural crystal caught my eye. What a treasure!
On our drive back home, we also were greeted by a group of Mule Deer that decided to say hello to us as we drove by and then took the cross walk in front of us to get to the field on the other side. I had the opportunity to see one of them leap over the fence, which again was just beautiful to see how gracefully and easily they “fly”.
And right after we said goodbye to them, we came upon two Marmots that were incredibly cute and oh so cuddly chubby. I just wanted to go hug them. We stopped to watch and connect with them as well, as I’d never seen one.
I just love all of the wildlife, ancient essence, and raw beauty we continue to experience on this adventure.
This is truly what I love about life and some of the things I value most.
And it is what I find incredibly important to share with all of you, to bring Mother Earth’s gifts and sacredness into close relationship to you, even if just through photos.
I also like to share the rich history and ancient energy because of our collective journey we are traveling together so that you, too, can integrate what you find integral to your path as part of the whole through experiencing it.
Yesterday, our last day in Escalante, ended with a beautiful six mile roundtrip hike to Calf Creek Falls – the 126 feet high lower falls.
This is an incredibly beautiful hike that has 14 interpretive stops along the way, leading you to the cool, shady haven of the falls.
It follows Calf Creek the entire way, meanders over cliffs and through canyons, which at this time of the year was full of beautiful purple blossoms and purple cactus that almost looked painted at times with splashes of yellow.
The area is also home to the North American Beaver, so we did see evidence of dams and lodges.
Above the canyon ledges were several granaries built by the ancient Fremont Culture that inhabited Utah from AD 700 to AD 1300.
There were also incredible painted figures at the bottom of one of the smooth cliffs. These are three large figures done in red pigment and have a trapezoidal shape (hard to fully see them in the photo, as it is across the canyon, but which also shares how large they are). The three figures are typical Fremont-style rock art with elaborate head dresses and seem to be holding hands together. Only speculative ideas on their meaning are available – religious ceremonies, deities, lineages, information, maps, or even warnings.
Interestingly we saw our only snake of our trips so far, on this hike.
Not sure of the type, but was not a rattlesnake and likely not poisonous, but it slithered quickly across the our path ahead and into the brush quickly, then made its way out from the brush back toward us and hid under a rock.
It moved quickly and seemed to time its appearance with us in order to see it, but then quickly disappeared back to the shadows.
Snake medicine is powerful and last night I also dreamed of black panther that kept coming at me….so a lot of shamanic and deep shadow, mysticism, and cosmic energies abound. Still making sense of all of the messages.
There was much lush vegetation in this wetlands habitat due to the creek, which makes it an ideal home for many animals, bird varieties, reptiles, fish, and plant life.
It was much colder near the falls that are set back in the shady canyon. Scarlet monkey flower, maiden -hair fern, and Easter flower are said to bloom near the seeps in the cliff walls here at certain times of the year.
We started our day with lunch at Kiva Koffeehouse, which is a unique and secluded spot outside of the main town of Escalante on the way to our hike.
It sits atop a hill with great views all around. And to our delight, which I had called ahead to make sure of, they had a couple of yummy vegan options including a vegan fire roasted corn and potato soup and veggie sandwiches with carrot salad, fruit, home made vegan bread and hummus on the side.
Even their hot drinks like lattes, mochas, and hot chocolates all had vegan options with choice of almond, oat or soy milk… So I enjoyed a chai latte with lunch, warming up from a cold morning that was just finishing off from rain all night and first part of the day.
We have lucked out with everything, including weather, as the rain started the day before, but had only sprinkled during our time at the petrified forest, which made the wood vibrant for us. Then rained hard again after and all night and morning.
But it didn’t rain once while we were on this hike and the sky in fact opened to lovely blue skies.
We talked to others coming back from the falls, as we were heading to them, saying that it actually was freezing and hailing at the falls when they were there right before us.
We didn’t experience any of this, but the sky did darken and gray once again when we finished the hike and made our way home, although did not rain again and today the sun is shining.
I love the image of this portal in the sky and glowing rain off in the distance, as we drove back last evening.
Another door has opened for us from our time spent here in Escalante and all that has been received.
And from the snake and black panther medicine, something big seems to be initiating and needing my embrace in a bigger way again.
I wonder what will be next as we continue our journey with three more Utah National Parks, heading off to Capitol Reef today.
Yesterday was a really special day of exploring the Petrified Forest Trail, but my favorite was the Trail of Sleeping Rainbows, which is an extension loop to the first trail. You must do this extra loop if you visit, as this is where you’ll find the most concentration of these rainbow beauties greeting and guiding you along the way.
It was like walking on the rainbow wood road…instead of the yellow brick road.
There were incredible specimens of stunning petrified wood everywhere – 5 1/2 million tons of fossilized wood to be near exact.
They are over 135 million years old – that’s pretty ancient. 😉
The trail is lovely taking you first through an area of balanced rocks, desert varnish rocks, Roundleaf Buffalo Berry shrubs, beautiful multi-colored lichen on rocks (blues, yellows, greens..), a pygmy forest, views of the town of Escalante and Wide Hollow Reservoir, black volcanic boulders and of course tons of beautiful and ancient petrified wood.
One of the nature trail markers speaks of the “Land of Imagination” when you come to the largest single deposit of petrified wood along the trail.
The guide pamphlet says:
“Imagine yourself in a large low floodplain similar to the Mississippi Delta area but with less foliage. To the northwest you could see towering volcanoes such as Mount St. Helens. To the east would be a large mountain range similar to the Sierra Nevada. It is the ancestral Rockies. You would be surrounded by large conifer trees, some more than 200 feet high. Nearby would be cycads, the ancestors of palm trees and some ferns. One hundred fifty million years ago this region was near the equator, but our continent has since drifted north.”
And of course dinosaurs would have been roaming the land.
Simply amazing to be in these ancient areas and to see the petrified wood of the towering trees that once stood here. You can tell they were huge by the size of the stumps, trunks, and branches remaining…like nothing that exists in this area now.
I’d never seen petrified wood like this before with so much brilliancy in color. It was truly stunning and mystical.
At the end of the trail you come to “one of the most remarkable petrified wood specimens in the park.” It shows “the subtle color changes from the outside rings to the center, which only a few petrified wood specimens in this formation are sufficiently preserved to be recognized.”
So just how does the petrified wood form?
Here is a brief explanation of the evolution of petrified wood that Scott, the Escalante Rock Shop guy provided me with my beautiful little specimen:
“Over 135 million years ago, the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument was closer to the equator and tropical. Dinosaurs roamed the area and the plant life mostly consisted of cycads, ferns, and conifers. The earth was geologically unstable. Floods and erosion would uproot trees and plants depositing them in flood plains and along sand bars. Later, volcanic ash covered the area.
In order for the trees to petrify, they had to be buried quickly with mud and silt to eliminate oxygen, which would cause them to deteriorate. Ground water rich in silicon dioxide and other chemicals would saturate the buried trees. The reds, browns, and yellows result primarily from compounds of iron, while manganese and other minerals account for the purples and dark blues.
Through a mineralization process on the cellular level, and by silicon dioxide acting as a cementing agent, the wood became petrified. This process takes millions of years!
This area lies within the Colorado Plateau, which has been uplifting for about 40 million years. These upheavals of the earth’s crust break the logs into irregular sections and exposes them to the forces of erosion. After being exposed the logs are further cracked and broken by the effects of freezing and thawing water that seeps into the cracks.”
I fell in love with all of these ancient spirits and was just in awe of the amazing colors and energy, as I stroked my hand over their surfaces.
We had gotten our first rain just about an hour before we headed out on this hike, which made the trail perfect, as there was just enough water that didn’t make it challenging to do the hike, but drenched the petrified wood bringing out the colors with wonderful vibrancy.
It sprinkled on and off while we hiked the rainbow wonderland and we were even greeted by a group of deer that surprised us, just as we had turned onto the Trail of Sleeping Rainbows….coincidence?
These deer frolicked right across our path and around us….I was so taken by their graceful leaps and could see why flying reindeer are part of Santa’s story as we know it. They literally looked like they were flying, as they barely touched the ground with each leap and then floated along their way.
It all happened too fast to capture any photos or video, so I just took it all in and took a few photos of a couple of them peeking back from in the distance after they flew through.
I so loved it.
And here and there you’d see piles of the petrified wood placed like cairns along the way from other hikers over time.
And upon completing the magickal trail, we headed to the Escalante Rock Shop, just below the park where I ended up finding the perfect small piece I was hoping to find.
I kept telling Dave that I wanted a rainbow piece of petrified wood to bring home and that is exactly what I discovered at the shop….and it was the only rainbow piece there, as the others were mono-colored mostly or had a couple of colors at most, or more in the browns.
Mine is delicately shaped like a long fern leaf, which I love too.
We only had five minutes to explore, as we needed to get back for Dave’s work, but it only took me about two minutes to survey everything and this piece was literally one of the first I saw.
We went to go pay for it and the guy gifted it to me for $1 because we didn’t have the right change.
We pulled out a twenty and a one, and because he had no change on hand, he said, “it’s your lucky day…just give me the one dollar bill and we’re good.”
That was very sweet of him and I was feeling the faeries and ancient ones shining upon me.
However, Dave found change in the car after we got back to it and before we drove away, he decided to bring it to him just because and to make sure of clearing any potential karma.
There are stories about the petrified wood here.
You are not allowed to collect or take any specimens from the trail. You can only purchase what is offered from the rock guy that he purchases through the park. Anasazi and Fremont Indians gathered petrified wood here to use for tools.
Some believe in an ancient curse on the area and whether this is true, or the power of guilt and belief have made it so, about a dozen times a year the park receives letters apologizing for taking the petrified wood and in the envelope is the returned piece, asking that their wrongs be made right, as they’ve had nothing but bad luck since taking it.
I took tons of photos of this amazing ancient garden of imagination…a place the dinosaurs once roamed, feeling the perfect piece would be at the rock shop and that knowing was actualized.
Yesterday was a really unique and mystical day, as we explored two sites in Escalante. The first was the Twentymile Dinosaur Tracksite and the second was Devil’s Garden.
Both so unique from things we’ve seen, but the Dinosaur tracks were incredible.
We drove out to this remote area and found ourselves the only people there, which made it ever-more special.
I’d talked to a guide a couple of weeks back where we’d collected info from him on hikes we may want to do in the area. I was immediately drawn to the Dinosaur Tracksite, knowing I had to go there and so I waited an extra ten minutes to talk to him, as he got busy with other people.
He said we would find the tracks all over the site, but that it depends on the angle of the sun to reveal them. Once you see them, they will pop out all over, which they did, and will appear as if they walked right off the cliff.
He gave us an info sheet on the site, which I’d like share here for background:
“Over 800 dinosaur footprints are preserved in the upper part of the Entrada Sandstone. The main 2-meter-thick track-bearing horizon crops out at the top of a 400-meter-long east/west trending bench, exposing tracks and trackways from multiple levels. Track preservation occurs as darker sediment infillings and as alternating light and dark underprinted sand laminations. Both three-toed tracks of carnivorous therepod dinosaurs and a unique sauropod (herbivorous) track are present.
This area was quite different 170 million years ago during the Middle Jurassic, when these dinosaurs walked here. Utah was located on the western edge of a giant supercontinent known as Pangaea (all lands) that was in the early phases of breaking apart into smaller continents. A long, narrow seaway stretched into this area from present day western Canada, down through Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming, not quite making it to Arizona. Vast coastal sand dunes (Entrada Formation) bordered the southern edge of this seaway, as the climate then was quite hot and dry. As the coastline moved inland and retreated, dry sand environments gave way to seasonally wet streams and tidal flats. These wet environments were perfect for recording the steps of these giants, the only evidence we now have that they ever existed here at the time.”
The energy here was powerful. We spent a couple of hours exploring the gray rocks and finding all of the tracks we possibly could – and they were EVERYWHERE!
It was absolutely incredible to be walking where once these giants did. I’ve seen so many prehistoric specimens of dinosaurs – bones, tracks, etc. – at museums and behind cases or secure areas.
But to walk in the footsteps of these creatures and be able to see and feel from their vantage point was quite a gift.
And being that no one was here, we had the whole sacred site to ourselves.
We explored both together and apart, being drawn where each was meant to go.
At one point I’d found some of the sauropod tracks and was really connecting and a huge wind swept up blowing sandstone all over my back and actually swept me up off my feet falling onto the tracks. Powerful stuff!
It may be hard to see in the photos due to lighting (I had a hard time photographing because it was so bright and wasn’t sure what I was aiming at – so shot and hoped), but the tracks were so distinct and in some cases quite deep. You could see the heel imprint and three toes with the therepods and the whole footprint with the sauropods.
You could see their strides and how they walked…we could track one footstep to the next in the case of the two-legged therepods, which were huge! And the four-legged sauropods would move with smaller strides and you could see all four footprints. Just beautiful.
And there were such a variety of different types within each group of dinosaur. You could see smaller to quite large ones. They would have been such an impressive sight.
I was completely consumed with what felt like such a treasure hunt in finding these ancient footprints, feeling the impressions gently, as you don’t want to rub away any sand or disturb these tracks, in order to continue their preservation.
It was amazing, to say the least.
I had wondered as we drove up, if I would be doing sound channeling here and that became clear after we stopped to just be with the energy.
We sat at the edge of one of the bench levels of the gray rock to meditate or simply receive. I took my shoes off to feel the ground on my bare feet, as the dinosaurs would have, and laid back with my head to the ground and my hands palms down to the ground.
I received what ever wanted to come through…after a couple of minutes of some sporadic visions, I then saw what felt to be a Crimson Dragon behind some rocks and trapped.
He peered through a small opening at me with his golden eyes with black slits in the center.
He was huge. I wondered at first if it could have been a Dinosaur, but no, that is not what I was getting….it was a Dragon. He was unable to release himself from this prison and here I was coming to his assistance.
I approached him delicately and investigated his intentions and nature. He was indeed fierce, but with a gentle heart – easily misjudged and feared by others, but without malicious intent.
He then squeezed one of his front clawed arms through the crack and pointed to my right. I felt he was directing me.
I knew then that my thought about doing sound channeling would come to be, as it would be sound that would help release him, help to direct energy that would open a door. And likely would also help release any other trapped energies or help realign things.
I opened my eyes and Dave was done too. He started making his way back down.
I took my time. I got up and realized that we had been sitting right in front of some amazing footprints. Oddly, when I first sat down I had surveyed and didn’t see any, thinking that’s interesting we found an area that was clear.
But in actuality there were quite a few, unless I was only now able to see them. One in particular seeming very much like could have been a Dragon’s.
I started walking to the right, which also happens to be the way out.
And stopped at a certain point just instinctively. I caught the last glimpse of Dave’s head disappear down the rocks and on his way to the car.
I got that this was where and when to begin.
I decided to video it, as it felt like it would be very different. And it was.
I will share the video separately in another post. I wasn’t sure, at first, that I would share it, as it has a very different energy, but I feel it is a very important expression of energy to share.
More on that in my next post, along with the video.
It was amazing to be on the rocks there alone with this energy I was channeling and feeling all around and within me, as Dave was back at the car.
I slowly made my way to him, climbing down and following the path of his footsteps.
I felt my work here was complete and we made our way to Devil’s Garden.
Devil’s Garden was a beautiful site that is just as it sounds….it is a garden of rock formations you can meander through and explore.
Very unique formations too.
You wander through oddly shaped hoodoos and find several arches, including Metate Arch.
There were two hoodoos that immediately felt to me like Egyptian God statues. Having a strong connection to my Egyptian parts and knowing that Egypt, in this life, was where I opened my sound healing for the first time, felt like a full circle experience.
So I had Dave snap a couple of shots of me with these two figures.
And the wind picked up. I seem to have a thing with wind these days.
I hope you enjoy the images shared. It was truly a powerful experience all around.
As mentioned in my last post, when I was prompted to turn back and let Dave explore Peek-A-Boo Slot on his own, I was led to my own inner exploration.
I realized why this was, as I was being called from within for something else that needed to take place here, which I discovered once he was well on his way deeper inside the slot canyon and I returned back, grounded at the entrance.
I instantly received the message as to what I was to do – some more sound channeling.
And since no one was around at all and I was alone, it felt perfect, tapping into my inner Sibyl.
When I do sound channeling it is derived from an energy/energies, feelings, or a story that wants to come through via sound. And this sound can be tones, song, and even an indistinguishable kind of ancient/cosmic language at times.
What I do is allow what I’m tuning into to just come through purely from my vulnerable surrender to the movement of energies through sound.
And this is what channeled through at the mouth of Peek-A-Boo Slot, which felt to utter an ancient song of these stones within the slot canyons and the spirits within.
I’d just spent the day exploring the slot canyons and immersing deep within the healing mother womb and intense bowel energy of the Earth inside these canyons.
This is her healing song that channeled in this moment.