We did a lot of running around again today (Saturday), so brace yourself for lots of pictures. Remember – this blog serves the dual purpose of being our personal ‘photo album’ to look back on in our later years. Plus – You know what the say; “A picture is worth a …”
We left little dog “Coach” in the Coach and headed over to the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary (←link here) a few miles north of Kanab. We heard it was best to not bring a pet along on the sanctuary tours.
A couple of Quick Facts from their website: best friends.org
In 1984, the founders of Best Friends Animal Society break ground on their no-kill animal sanctuary in Kanab, Utah. It becomes the nation’s largest no-kill sanctuary and Best Friends becomes the flagship for the no-kill movement.
The sanctuary is on 3,700 acres (15 km2) with an additional 33,000 acres (130 km2) leased from the United States Bureau of Land Management near Zion National Park, the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, Bryce Canyon National Park, and Lake Powell.
There was only one problem when we arrived – the sanctuary only has four “General” tours daily and they were already full 🙁
They also have a number of “Special” tours, i.e., Parrot Garden; Wild Friends; Horse Haven & Piggy Paradise; Bunny House; Behind-the-Scenes; etc., but these tours also require prior coordination and are mostly early-morning tours.
So we signed up as “standbys” for the last “General” tour of the day at 2:30 PM and left to go check out some other local attractions.
We went north on 89 for a mile or so and came upon the Moqui Cave.
The Moqui Cave was once used by Anasazi people as a shelter or food store, according to archaeological digs in the area. It was rediscovered by white settlers in the 19th century, and served as a speakeasy in the 1920s during Prohibition. In 1951, the cave was purchased by Laura and Garth Chamberlain, who opened a tavern and dance hall the following year, and it became a tourist attraction and museum. It currently contains a substantial rock collection, including many ultraviolet-fluorescent minerals, fossils, pottery, spear points, American Indian artifacts and art, dinosaur tracks (estimated to be over 140 million years old), and displays about the Anasazi. There is also display about the Ancestral Puebloan and a gift shop. (ref: Wikipedia®)
The Moqui Cave was pretty cool and the entrance fee was a reasonable $5 per person. And – we got a $1 military discount off that. Worth the stop if you’re in the area. Stilla wasn’t even claustrophobic which is usually a concern at places like this.
We headed on up 89 (north) to the town of Orderville…
where we passed by the cool looking “Rock Stop”…
and then we found the German Bakery that a couple people told us about:
We enjoyed a quick lunch and Stilla stocked up on bread and a couple sweet treats. The lunch was good and I stole one of the kirsch tortes from the “to-go” bag before we left. No dessert for me later. 🙂
We decided to head back south so we wouldn’t be late for our 2:30 tour at the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. But first, I wanted to check out Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park (←link).
The sand dunes are about 15 miles off 89 west of Kanab. We figured we had enough time to check it out for future reference before our sanctuary tour. You never know – we might want to bring the ATV back here sometime in the future.
We found a large parking area just before the entrance to the state park with lots of rigs, ATV’s, and other off-road vehicles. We could see the beginning of the dunes in the distance. Since we were short on time and didn’t want to hassle with an entrance fee to just check out the park, I just snapped a couple pics:
We’ll definitely have to come back here with the ATV. The website says that 90% of the dunes are available for riding. Day use fees are only $8 and the main campground is $20.
We got back to the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary just in time for the 2:30 tour and found out that our “standby” status was upgraded to “full-tour members” 🙂
We had to wait for some wild turkeys to cross the road on the way to the Welcome Center.
The Best Friends Welcome Center.
We watched a documentary in the theatre with the other members of our tour group.
And then our group was split up into two shuttles.
This place is huge… our tour-guide/driver took us around the sanctuary and pointed out the many buildings. We stopped at one of the areas where they keep the cats:
In one of the mesh-enclosed outer rooms, the cats even had ramps so they could hang out in the rafters.
These cats are currently up for adoption.
The only other place we got to stop at was one of the nice octagon-shaped buildings to visit the older dogs:
We got to visit with a few of the dogs after a tour of the kennels.
There are lots of volunteer opportunities here. The sanctuary is home to around 1,700 animals. They even have guest cottages and an RV park for guests/volunteers. We toured the RV park on our way back out but only saw two sites along a dirt loop.
They even have a couple nice pet cemeteries here for the animals that passed (due to sickness, accident, or other natural causes). They don’t put any animals to sleep here at the sanctuary unless it’s for humane reasons.
The canyons and area inside the sanctuary grounds have been used as the backdrop for some “B” western movies. “Headin’ ’em off at the pass!” was filmed at Ambush Pass on the dirt road through the sanctuary. The iconic scene, “Hi Ho Silver Away!” from “The Lone Ranger” was filmed here along with scenes from “One Little Indian” (The old barn still in use here is actually a movie set) and scenes from “The Outlaw Josey Wales.” (ref: TripAdvisor)
After our free ~90 minute tour of the animal sanctuary was concluded we headed back into the town of Kanab to check out the Little Hollywood Museum (←link).
We walked through the gift shop to take the free tour of the Western movie sets behind the building.
We watched some of the video presentation inside one of the buildings.
And then we walked through the movie sets as it started to drizzle again.
The “Outlaw Josey Wales” homestead set:
Barn used in the movie “Outlaw Josey Wales”:
Tack & Feed building from “Black Bart”:
And what tour is complete without a visit to the gift shop !?!:
The Little Hollywood restaurant (←link).
We decided to call it a day and drove back through town to our site at the Hitch-N-Post RV Park.
Today (Sunday) we’ll head on over to Saint George, UT which brings us a little bit closer to Las Vegas, NV where we will meet our son William on the 22nd.
William just got in from Germany last night. Stilla’s excited! He arrived in Colorado Springs with his girlfriend Jasmine to stay at our daughter Joleen’s house for a few days. Then they’ll rent a car and drive out to Las Vegas to meet up with us later next week.
Also, my brother Steve, his girlfriend Cheryl, my Mom, and Stepdad Jim will come up from Casa Grande, AZ in week or so to meet us as well!
We’ve been to the Elks Lodge in Saint George before and are looking forward to a few days there. Stay tuned… don’t let all the pictures scare you away 🙂