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Seeing Red

The drive up the to my families mountain ranch is extraordinary and never ceases to amaze my senses.

The road winds around the Southern Utah countryside as it climbs in elevation.

At first you cross through a dry dusty landscape that almost seems as if it has long lost all desire to bring forth beauty. The dirt and rocks are pale brown and the vegetation is sparse and unattractive. Then, as your climb  takes you higher and deeper into the mountains the changes of environment slowly become more apparent. Here a Cactus has blossomed with the added moisture in the ground, there a small cluster of Quaking Aspens grows towards the heavens.

One of the most interesting parts of the entire drive, though, is the road itself. Since the family's land lies just outside of Zion National Park a significant portion of the trip is spent on Federal land.  What makes this fun is that all of the roads in Zion N.P. are red.

Not red like a firetruck, but red like the sandstone that blows in the winds of this area. Rusty Red like the edge of a worn piece of metal. The red roads beautifully match the rock formations that are so impossible to ignore.

I often wonder, as I'm driving up that road, why some of the land was chosen for the Park and other land wasn't. Surely someone didn't stop walk the edges of the land and say, "This right here is ugly, we can't add that in," because it's all rather fantastic (although I will admit that Zion has a monopoly on the breathtaking).

I feel almost sad when I drive over that last bit of demarcation and enter into county road once more, as if the red pavement actually enhanced the beauty all around me. Yet, I can still pull over, get out and marvel at the Hand of God all around me. It makes no logical sense that the color of the path should change my view on the world around me, and yet it seems to do so.

I wonder how many things within life I alter merely because of the way that they are presented to me. Food, clothes, homes, even people. Then I realize that regardless of my perspective, the landscape really hasn't changed and is still just as beautiful. The fault does not lie with the object in question, but with me.

I'll have to work on that.


Cannwin spends her time searching for her inner Shakespeare in the hopes that one day she will be able to dethrone the king and take her place as the greatest writer of all time. She just moved with her husband and four children from South Dakota to the sunny SouthWest. You can explore more of her world at The Great and Random Ramblings of Cannwin and

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