Friday, August 21, 2009

Maple Canyon and Mount Pleasant

New Summer Adventure #4

This was not on my original list of plans, but I'm counting it. Because it was new. Because it is summer. Because it was a great adventure. I may just better count it as a substitute for Cherry Hill, because for the second year in a row, we just can NOT seem to make it there as a family. A perfect hot afternoon may still present itself though, so we'll see.

Also included in this adventure was a drive down Moroni's main street, and a visit to Mount Pleasant. Wonderful, wonderful stuff, and I'm going to share.

All the way to Nephi, as Zach watched the mountains east of us pass by, he began to get frustrated. "Mom, you keep driving AROUND the mountain. We need to go TO it." :o)

Maple Canyon is west of Fountain Green, which appeared to be known for not much but turkey farms. The neighboring canyon is nothing short of a rock-climber's paradise. There are steep, climbable rock faces on every side. Many of them are gold-colored and have what look like nubbly hand and foot holds all over them, it even appeared that they just might be ready to fall apart. Solid they were, though, and perfect for climbing up or repelling down.

I barely remembered to snap this picture as I was leaving.

We went up on a Friday night, and were neighbor campers with our good friends. I never took a walk around the campground, but it seemed not large, and still pretty empty. By nightfall, though, lots of people were showing up and in the morning too. And they were almost all of the same people you would see showing up at any given climbing gym. I did notice a couple of trail heads, but never went exploring.

Take a good look at Sean's hair. I just trimmed it, a VERY little bit though. I'm the only one that gets to hold the scissors until he is one year old. :o)

In the morning, the young women from our ward were coming to have a day of climbing and repelling, which my husband and the other dad were helping with. Teresa and I and the kids hung out until lunch, then we hurried and packed up to go kill time at her parents' house in Mount Pleasant. I have to pat myself on the back here, because I packed up and loaded our entire camp by myself in about a half hour. It helped that Teresa's kids are about the same age as my own so they entertained each other. Neither of us had room in our vehicles for the huge bag of trash. We left that behind for the fellas. :o)

Some things I loved about the drive to Mount Pleasant:
*You're on a back road and it just feels like you could drive as fast as you pleased and you'd never get caught.
*Sometimes you'd see a home, where they have lots of recycled trash art for sale. Tin can windmills and the like.
*The fence posts were NOT from Home Depot. Most of them looked like giant twigs.
*Two places caught my eye in downtown Moroni. The Moroni Opera House. (I've gotta wonder if it's ever used for what it was intended anymore...) The Next Chapter book and gift shop. (I should have stopped in for a peek)
*Then from Moroni to Mount Pleasant you're just passing sprawling fields and farms and my mind loves the slowing-down feeling that just plain happens when you drive somewhere like this. Ahhhh... I should use a memory like that to help me fall asleep at night.

Teresa's parents have some horse property so after a quick pit stop at their house we drove to the field. My kids loved feeding the horses barley, and with my help Ben even dared have them eat it right out of his hand. Ben also got a little ride (walk) around with the horse (an older girl was also on with him). He was so relaxed and just loved it--I'm happy that I got a good video of that. Zach got only got to sit on one of the horses, because they were a little touchy and lots of kids were interested.

I know. Mostly a picture of a horse's tail end. But what do you do?

Then came my favorite part. At the end of the property was a pond, some big trees, and a rope swing; I decided to drive down the gravel road where there was some shade and I could feed Sean in the car. The kids had a running start but I passed them and got to see their happy running faces as they tried to keep up and beat their friends. Don't ask me why I relished this, it was just magical.

Then more moments that I just wanted to bottle up, as I fed Sean in the car. I rolled the windows down so the perfect 75-ish degree air could blow through. In whatever direction you looked you could see only see one or two buildings. My view was perfect for watching the kids play at the pond, my boys contentedly throwing rocks and twigs in. Teresa's dad helped those that wanted to with the rope swing.

Teresa's oldest, who is nine, and his friend made a sudden discovery and came running over to show all of the other kids. They had caught a frog and needed a container for it. Teresa produced a tupperware, probably wondering if that frog would be her new family pet. :o) Eventually things were winding down and we had to head for home. I just left feeling like the day could very well be one of the prize jewels in my kids treasure box of childhood memories.


Corinne said...

Jan, that sounds fantastic :)

Alison said...

That looks like a fun time for your family.