There’s a good chance you’ll end up spending the night in Blanding or Monticello. Both towns have a few chain motels, as well as a handful of independently owned ones, and if you don’t stay there, you’ll have a very long drive up to Moab, south into Arizona, or east into Colorado.
I chose Blanding as the place to end Day 4 and begin Day 5. However, I quickly learned that Blanding is a town that lives up to its name. After settling into my motel room, I walked up the street to the flashing traffic light. My dinner choices were even more limited than they would have been an hour earlier (since the sit-down restaurant near my motel was about to close), so I ended up at the A&W hamburger stand inside a strange little grocery store/gas station combo.
My chicken sandwich took a long time to prepare, so I had plenty of time to walk around. It was a depressing place. The store seemed too big to be a convenience store, but too empty to be considered a full-fledged supermarket. I’ve been in some sad, “grey” towns before, including the one I grew up in — and this place had the same feel.
Speaking of “grey”, I suppose it didn’t help matters that as Day 5 began, the sky was blanketed in snow clouds — which are, perhaps, the dreariest of all clouds, lacking any kind of interesting shape. They always hang low, and hide the nearby scenery. And of course, it’s never warm under a snow cloud.
The dreariness continued as I drove up US 191, but broke up as I arrived in…
Maybe Monticello seemed more cheerful, based simply on the blue sky that started to appear as I drove into town. Monticello’s Main Street also has a full-fledged traffic light…
… the stately courthouse for San Juan County…
… and of course, an LDS church. This is Utah, after all.