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What Would Edward Abbey Have Thunk?

Moab, UT. The world is still full of people who have to be given credit for good planning of a certain type: they arranged to be born in the right year. In fact, most people who chose to be born from 1945 to 1960 in Europe and North America should get credit for this.

The author, Edward Abbey, also deserves credit for being born in the last decade or two when one could still experience the glories of Moab, UT. What would he think today?

I believe it was in "Desert Solitaire" that he wrote about being so tired of the summer heat in Moab that he got in his car and blasted down a washboarded gravel road on his way to the LaSalle Mountains, in order to cool off. 'The ultimate test of man and metal,' was how he put it.

Let's consider his example of deliberate hardship and postponed release, and see if it applies to my situation today.  I was able to use it by remaining parked in a ghastly place, just to milk the act a bit.  I "enjoyed" tourist helicopters overhead, gun-crazed yahoos, and a hundred motor-crazed yahoos. 

Once on this blog I wondered how long it would be before UTVs (Polaris Razers) came equipped with thumpah--thumpah sound systems. I found out today. Tourists like that are now the very apotheosis of the Moab experience. 

I rode up to check on what used to be my favorite dispersed campsite north of Moab.

I have camped in this site as recently as three years ago. But now it is gone forever thanks to the BLM. There is another site still available, nearby. It is about 30 feet off the road, which of course is heavily used by the motorized-crazed yahoos. The old site was 100 yards back from that.

So I too experienced a little of the magic of Moab before it was completely destroyed. Good planning. 

I am starting to sound grumpy about every outdoor sport other than mountain biking. Well, that's not good. So let's take time to praise one other tourist industry in Moab:


Anonymous said…
Baby boomers, increases in RV sales, little growth in the RV park or campground industry, opening federal lands to drilling and mining, BLM heavy handedness --- all have contributed to overcrowded dispersed areas for camping and boondocking. And it's only going to get worse.

Bon vivant said…
I prefer Kanab since my first sight of Moab (2015) left me wanting.
Chris, we are overdue for a recession. It is our best hope.

Bon vivant, it's funny, I was just thinking of Kanab, and how I have underutilized it over the years. Perhaps the loose sand scared me off.