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What started as a fun place for family sleepovers turned into a 5000 square foot home for the Christensen household

Located a few miles south of Moab, UT is a most unusual dwelling. Not so imaginatively named, the Hole ‘N’ The Rock is a testament to the vision and tenacity of one man Albert Christensen. The Christensen family has moved to the area in the early 20th Century and had an 80-acre homestead between Moab and Monticello. Albert and his brother Leo carved a cave in a sandstone cliff as a shelter for cowboys passing through the area on cattle drives.

In 1940 Albert expanded his ambitions and started drilling and blasting out huge chucks of rock from the sandstone cliff. After 12 years of blood, sweat and most likely tears the family moved into their new home underneath millions of tonnes of sandstone rock! The home is 5000 square feet (460 m2) and has 14 rooms supported by massive rock pillars. There are shelves and cubbies carved into the walls and a fireplace with a 65-foot chimney drilled into the sandstone. There is also a huge bathtub built out of the rock. Each of the rooms have the original furnishings from the 40s and 50s so as you go through the rooms it is like stepping back in time. Albert also fancied himself as a bit of a taxidemist, but it has to be said it was not one of his natural talents! There are examples of how bad he actually was throughout the home, including one very scary looking pony.

Albert and Leo opened a diner adjacent to the house in 1945, which operated until 1955 when Albert had a heart attack. Sadly, he died 2 years later and was buried in a small alcove just down from the main house. Gladys had the sign we see today painted above their home and opened a shop and did tours of the home until her death in 1974. She is buried alongside Albert.

The Hole ‘N’ The Rock was acquired by the Hansen family who later added more gift shops and petting zoo.

Tours are still possible to see the house, which is fascinating. It should be noted no photography is allowed inside the house – the pictures below of the interior the Christensen home I borrowed from the Hole ‘N’ The Rock’s website.

The entrance to the gift shop at Hole 'N' The Rock near Moab, Utah
The entrance to the Christensen's home at Hole 'N' The Rock
The gift shop and cafe
A rusty truck - full of character
The niche where Gladys and Albert Christensen are buried
The grave marker of Gladys and Albert Christensen

Where is Hole ‘N’ The Rock

Location:11037 US-191, Moab, UT 84532
Website:http://www.theholeintherock.com/
Hours:8am-6pm, except for Christmas
Admission:Adults: $6; Children (5 to 10 years): $3.50 Children under 5: Free

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