Sunday, July 27, 2008

Vacation - Tuesday: The lava tubes

Pin It When I left Hurricane, I decided I’d venture to places I’d never before seen. Hence, I ended up in a little lonely place called Millard County. I was fully expecting grand sights after all of my research of the area, but found myself somewhat disappointed at the difference between the descriptions of said places, and what they actually were like.

Plus the directions were very poorly written.

I did, however, find a place which definitely rated up there on the ‘cool meter’ known as the lava fields where the lava tubes were located.

Lava tubes can be formed in a few different ways, one of these is the idea that lava flows over the surface of the ground and then hardens on top. Underneath, however, the lava is cooling much more gradually and continues to flow beneath the protective overcoat of sorts. Because of this flowage, a sort of tunnel is left behind once the lava has completed its journey.

I found some of these tubes and the places where portions of the ceiling had dropped away, revealing the tubes themselves. In some places, the roof had dropped for nearly a quarter mile making it more of a lava trench than a tube.

I decided to explore these tubes, so, attaching both headlamps and grabbing my small flashlight, I headed into the depths of the chasm.

Inside, the sunlight shone down through the ceiling in places, making the place beautiful. Also, the 30 degree drop in temperature was also a welcome addition to the adventure.

Inside some of the tubes, the air was a bit musty (where there was poor ventilation) and some smelled of pigeon droppings (a popular nesting place for birds). I tried to get a few shots of the tubes from the inside by ‘painting’ in the light with a flashlight, but my light was far too weak and the photos are less than desirable. I apologize for these shots on which a flash was used…I didn’t have a diffuser, and they look terrible; however, a terrible shot is better than nothing at all.

Please tell me that I’m right.

I stayed in this area for a couple of hours and did enjoy myself; I even explored a few tubes which went on for quite some time. I must admit, it was just the slightest bit creepy after being alone in those dark places for long enough, but it was awe-inspiring as well.

Finally, it came time for me to head off to explore bigger and better places, and I ended up going off to “The Devil’s Kitchen” which had been promoted as being something pretty amazing, but I found myself somewhat underwhelmed and disappointed with what was offered. Once-again the description of what it was was not what was really there…

Just how much of a letdown was it? Let me put it this way, it was so disappointing that I didn't even bother to take any photos of the place. I did, however, take a few photos of my little hitchhiker who'd stowed on board my hood to save himself a few miles of travel.

He was much more cool than the kitchen...


annette said...

Whoa! So cool. This place appeals to the aventure seeker, rock lover, science geek, and 'thinks that lava is cool' girl that I am. I am so jelous. The pictures are great, (even the flash ones). I was blown away by the sheer size of the hole. I've never even heard of lava tubes before. How far away is this place from Provo?

Danielle said...

I like the picture of look so TOUGH! :P

Gerb said...

That humongous Lava Tube-Pit kind of freaks me out. But still, what a grand adventure! Too bad there were disappointments, too. You seem to be good at making the best of those situations, though.

Anonymous said...

I would love to venture out like that. The pictures were amazing! I think it is so neat that you are able to do stuff like that. How much fun it would be!
I love your hitchiker! Did you give him a name?

Kris said...

Well little did you know that my great great grandparents settled Konosh, and my grandmother lived there most her growing up years. But I never knew about the lava caves. Cool! Brycen thought those pictures where pretty neat, he wants to go now.

Anonymous said...

Hey! Your self portrait looks an awful lot like that guy in the next door neighbor's Sunday-go-to-meetin' clothes from a few blogs back. Ya know'im? He's hot!

Shayla said...

There's nothing like a man with two head lights on his head at once. Love all the pictures.

Jamie said...

You did indeed miss out on the grandeur of Pioneer Day, but it looks like you still had some fun of your own. Great pics.

The Pink Potpourri said...

wow! those pictures are incredible! looks like a lot of fun!

Teachinfourth said...

Nettle - Maybe about an hour, hour and a half...there was more stuff in the area, however, I didn't see it all. The lava fields were amazing too, wish I'd taken a few photos there too but I was on a mission.

Uncle D - I picked the coolest one...

Gerb - I think you'd be impressed if you were there. As I was exploring, I found little stumps of candles placed here and there like breadcrumbs. I can only imagine exploring these caves and lighting up the path behind you must have been amazing.

KJ - I didn't name him...he came with his own already. The trip to the tubes was slow, but that part was worth it.

Kris - I think Bry would love to see them. You should head up some time and 'look up' family roots.

Anonymous - I have connections...I could probably get in touch with him if needed. You're right, he is hot...he was burning up out there on the lava fields.

Shay-Shay - Just wish I'd bought one of those mega flashlights to take in to see a lot better.

Jamie - We can't enjoy everything all at once, now can we?

Pink Potpourri - It was great! I love to see stuff like that.

Emily said...

I love that one with the giant hole and your car...great perspective. The picture of you is pretty hot too! I'm glad you had fun but I haven't seen you in ages. Are you avoiding me?~ :p

When do you start school?

Bee said...

Wow! Your summer has been much cooler than mine. I taught summer school...

What memories you've made with all your adventures! Thanks for the encouragement about the neighborhood watch program. I'm up to 30 participants!

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Michelle said...

Hey sorry I didnt call back, we were at the hospital longer than we thought, it is amazing to me how things can change in a matter of minutes!!! My heart goes out to the family, he is the same age as Madi and fighting every hour for his life. Scott gets ordained as an Elder on Thursday, what a day for all of us!

Nels said...

Cool pix. Just wanted you to know that I was here. And my grandma grew up in Millard County. So there.

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