June 2, 2018 Denver to Grand Junction, CO
After visiting Red Rocks Park, we were on our way. The highway through the mountains and canyons can be treacherous at times. But the first thing that happened was a massive traffic jam due to merging lanes and an accident ahead. That set us back about an hour!The scenery on this stretch of I-70 is beautiful; we climbed a few thousand feet into a mountain pass,
then the highway descended and wound through bluffs and canyons
carved by the Colorado River, barely visible in this photo:The Colorado River originates in the snowy peaks of the Rockies, then meanders southwest and on down to its most spectacular achievement, the Grand Canyon.
The road to Grand Junction is like a sneak preview, a rehearsal for that crowning achievement: Glenwood Canyon and other beautiful rock formations created by the Colorado River’s path and further shaped by wind and water erosion.
The Colorado River also contributes to the creation of some spectacular scenery in a couple of Utah’s national parks, including Arches National Park (which I will write about in a future post) and Canyonlands National Park (which we didn’t have a chance to visit), before it widens into Lake Powell just north of the Arizona border, before its spectacular display at the Grand Canyon. The Colorado River is also the river that was dammed by Hoover Dam which created Lake Mead.