After spending the night in Cedar City along I-15, I wanted to get to Salt Lake without having to take the Interstate. I'd ridden and driven US-89 countless times and it was almost 50 miles East of me at that point anyway, so I mapped out a route that had me riding up the West side of the state almost all the way to Salt Lake on various state highways, and thus only had to take I-15 for a few miles on the final leg to Mom's house. It was cool -- in the mid 70s -- having rained overnight, as I pulled out about 930am and headed up North of Cedar City on Utah-130. This quiet two-lane headed Northwest out of Cedar City, along a lot of alfalfa fields and into the Great Basin, past small towns, which in Utah are often named for biblical characters or places, or characters from the other scriptures used by Mormons, The Book of Mormon. The first town along the road was Enoch. The early Saints were convinced they were building Zion and named their places accordingly. The early Saints were also busy colonizing the West, building towns about a day's horse ride apart all up and down Utah and Idaho and into Arizona. It was said they were as busy as bees, and that's why the state seal has a beehive and why the state's road number signs have the number in a beehive. In Washington the road signs and numbers are in a silhouette of George Washington, and other states have a shape or an outline of the state like Idaho does. In Utah it's a beehive -- not because the state is a honey producer, but because it symbolizes the busy as bees early Mormon pioneers, who even named the state "Deseret" which is the word for honeybee in the Book of Mormon.
The road continued up past more small farming towns, and off to the West towards the Great Basin and Nevada the thunderheads built as the day went on. Days like this on the bike are wonderful -- perfect temperatures, wonderful grand vistas, and the road virtually to myself. All the traffic is on I-15 some 20 or so miles East, and really the only other vehicles on the road other than farm machinery were people traveling local, not long distance. This part of the West is vast and empty.
I pulled in a little after 4p, and Mom was outside. "We expected you here a couple of hours ago, its not that far" she said. "I wandered" I replied as I climbed off the bike. "What is there to wander to out there?" she asked. "Stuff" I said, "and besides, I'm in no rush, are we going to the theater or something tonite?" "Just glad you are here is all" she said. The thunderheads had followed me up and there was a storm building across the valley. "Did you get wet?" she asked. "Nope -- dry the whole way." "Good." she said. And in true Mom fashion dinner was almost ready, and she went in to finish it up as I unloaded the bike. It's almost as if John Denver penned it himself; "there's a storm across the valley, clouds are rolling in, the afternoon is heavy on your shoulders. There's a fire softly burning, and supper on the stove, and it's the light in your eyes that makes him warm. Hey it's good to be back home again..."