As we drive through Utah’s vast, infinite sky, layers of canyonlands sprawl out as far as the eye can see. I was spellbound by the colors that waved through the clouds and the deep red formations made me feel as if I was on Mars. We wanted to pull the car over every five minute to try and capture it, as if it was our way of preserving the beauty we were seeing. I remember wishing the drive through Utah would last until we got to our destination. It truly is a special place of high vibrations. It tugs at each person differently, making each person connect with a unique energy all their own. Some moments are meant to be kept, but I feel like our moments through Utah are meant to be shared. Happy Sunday <3
We’re so excited to be back in the U.S.! We have quite a long road trip ahead of us, but we’ve got the jeep packed to the brim and ready for our first round of New Crop Pop Up Shops. We loved our coast to coast roadtrip last year, that this year we’re doing it again with some art markets and summer festivals sprinkled in between. We hope to share New Crop Shop’s vibrant and diverse energy at each place that is part of our tour, and also those serendipitous places that aren’t. If you’re at any of these stops…come by our booth and say hi!
It’s been almost a year since I have driven a car. I haven’t even thought about it, or missed it. That is until I started listening to our road trip playlist and dejavus started flooding my memory. Isn’t it funny how music can pull you into its time machine and land you in a familiar moment?
Last summer we rode Route 66 all the way to California, as long and slowly as possible. The journey on this vast open road, reciprocated what was happening inside. All of a sudden we were facing the exact opposite of everything we were accustomed to. We rode until it was dark with no perception of time except for “light or dark”, veered off tracks to feed our curiosity and the only deadline we had to meet was our one way flight out of the country a month away. Gonzo stayed on my lap as the open air became his lullaby.
Once we hit the west, we realized we not have only traveled in miles but also back in time. Deserted old motels, faded neon signs and abandoned diners still stands like a ghost town out of a movie. We were in awe of the time warp that we found ourselves in. What we were most impressed with was the design aesthetic of the vintage neon signs. The colors, and the retro typefaces had us stopping every half a mile. From a designers perspective, there was a lot of inspiration to be found here. From a travelers perspective, this was my first encounter of the beauty in traveling slow and smelling the roses (or adoring the neon signs).
We truly were enchanted with our stay in Santa Fe. Above is some shots on the road and in our hostel. We spent two nights in Santa Fe International hostel and it was a gem of a find. The outdoor courtyard was charming, our room was a sunny sanctuary, and the feeling of community was welcoming. We enjoyed the details that surrounded us in the city. Every bridge we passed displayed artwork, wooden doors carved with intricate designs, and eclectic shops that boasts influence from Native American arts to artisan pieces from all over the world. I met an inspiring local named Ian who runs Peaceful Wind Gallery. Every piece selectively collected during his travels through India, Nepal, Tibet and Southeast Asia. I was in awe with his finds. There were original scrolls from Tibet, intricate furniture, and beautiful Buddhist statues. We also chatted with his son who has embraced his dad’s gallery by branching into the up and coming art scene of Tibet. They both travel and meet with different artists to showcase their work. The most amazing part of our visit to this gallery is seeing how passionate they were about each piece and the story behind the artist. It was a great karmic encounter, and grateful for people like Ian who walk into your lives, even if just for a short visit to open your eyes with wonder.
I’ve always heard amazing things about Utah’s landscape, and it took seeing it with my own eyes to wonder why it took us so long to get here. Daylight was occupied with beautiful day hikes and Aaron long-boarding down Mt. Zion’s red roads. When the night fell we camped at Mount Zion right off of catskills campground overlooking canyon lands as far as your eye can see. We were atop of a canyon, so high we felt that we were in the clouds. Everywhere you turned, your peripheral vision led you right back into the vast sky that surrounded you. We happened to spend the night here during the full moon “SuperMoon” and there was never a dark moment in the night, it glowed so brightly it felt like ambient daylight. The moon reflected off the white rock in which we laid in. Backs on our blankets and just in awe of what was before us. We never slept this night, afraid we would miss something. I wanted to hang on to this night as long as it would let me. I knew a SuperMoon wouldn’t arrive for another few months or so, and who knows where in my life I would be. But tonight, I was here, atop of Mount Zion, a land that fosters magic and here I was in rapture of it. When the only constant is change, we knew this night was what we make of it. So we put out energies into the wee hours to daybreak. We even lit sparklers- it felt like a party and the moon was our disco ball. To honor the Supermoon’s presence me and Aaron created totem poles with our headlights creating a lunar alignment. How easy would it be I thought, to get lost here, to fall under the spell of this canyon land.
I will always remember running into a rattlesnake crossing our paths, and just a few minutes later a tarantula the size of my hand scurried past us. Wow I thought, this land was rugged and it was beautiful! Day hikes and siestas filled our daylight hours, and as always the grand finale of the star lights fill our nights.
Best parts of the trips are always the spontaneous stops that you come across along the ride. We had a very flexible schedule on the road, so we were lucky enough to stand in awe of many places that we otherwise would not have know to include in our itinerary. One of them was overlooking Lake Powell as the moon appeared brightly against the water color sky of Arizona.
When passing through Colorado we decided to spend the night in San Juan National Forrest. During the drive it was hard to keep myself from hanging out the car window. Incredible tall pine trees, mountains, lakes, creeks, and valleys that reminded me of a Bob Ross painting. Maybe that’s not the best metaphor, but it was radical change from the desert and canyon lands that we have recently spent our days in. Once we got to the park we were told that “Cinnamon Pass” has an elevation of 12,805 and it requires a 4-wheel vehicle to drive through windy and steep roads clinging to the side of the mountain. We were told this is a side of Colorado that many don’t get to experience, so we said let’s do it! Contrary to our drive through Colorado, going up Cinnamon Pass on this rugged, bumpy ride alongside of this mountain made it hard for me to look out the window without feeling my fear of heights linger. It felt like with every bump, we were flung sideways and I kept imagining our tires rolling off the edge of the mountain rolling down deep into the steep valley below us. Once we made it to the top, we realized it was well worth the 4-wheeling adventure up. It was majestic and it felt as if we had all of Colorado to ourselves. We pitched a tent by a creek and cracked open the whiskey to keep us warm. This weather and elevation was also something we had to acclimate to. I was out of breath just from a short walk and had to throw on every layer of clothing we brought with us. We tucked ourselves into our sleeping bags and slept into the cool crisp night of Colorado.
Photos taken with a vintage Nikon film camera