Having ordered the motorcycle part with overnight delivery to the Las Vegas BMW dealership we headed off towards our next destination – Cathedral Gorge State Park in Nevada. After an overnight low of 45F in Panguitch, the early part of the day through the Dixie National Forest and into Cedar City, UT the temperature was very moderate due to the higher elevation ranging in 6400-7700 feet. However, as we left the forest and descended into the lower lying Cedar City it started warming up. As you are riding it’s an interesting experience because you can physically feel the air temperature increase as you ride and descend.
Before heading this way we had done some quick weather checks and although the park would get warm during the day (high 90’s was the forecast) it would cool off quickly once the sun went down with an early morning low in the low 60’s – very much like the weather in Albuquerque. West of Cedar City the population starts to really thin out with nothing but high desert and the occasional ‘grass farm’ producing hay. Once we arrived in Panaca, NV where the park is located it was indeed hot but each campsite had man-made shade covers and once out of our gear with a 10mph breeze it was quite nice just hanging out at the picnic table having a beer and some chips 🙂 .
As hoped for, the park was initially empty except for one additional camper. However, as the afternoon progressed maybe three more campers came in. Damn crowds 😉 . Just kidding, it was actually a welcome break from the packed commercial campgrounds we have stayed at. Since it was too hot to be out in the sun we waited until shortly before sunset to check out the rock/mud formations. Pretty cool.
We were not looking forward to the next day. The ride into Las Vegas and temperatures around 105F 🙁 .