Just like I did last year, for my own ease in stepping back and reminiscing about our vacation in Utah, Arizona, and Nevada earlier this summer while driving 1,684 miles from park to park, I’ve pulled together the recaps from our week of exploring into one tidy little spot on my blog. I hope you’ll find this useful if you’re considering planning on vacationing in any of these places. Just click on the blue subheading to read more about that particular excursion…
While driving from the airport to our vacation destination, we stopped to explore Red Rock Canyon, a 195,819-acre National Conservation Area within the Mojave Desert. With time for only one hike, we chose Ice Box Canyon and were rewarded with a little of all types of terrain.
We loved Zion for the variety of hikes and types of scenery that’s spread across its 146,597 acres. There’s something for everyone from easy to strenuous hikes on trails that stay low along the canyon floor to others that reach high into the sky with long dangerous drop-offs.
Annually, only 10% of visitors of the Grand Canyon make their way to the North Rim. After having visited both rims, I enjoyed the contrast of the North Rim’s greenery to the South Rim’s desert and consider myself lucky to have visited both sides. The North Rim of the Grand Canyon provides a variety of hikes so there’s something for everyone from easy short hikes to strenuous and much longer hikes.
The short hike to Dinosaur Tracks required a steep climb on loose rocks before we reached the top of the mesa where we found well-preserved bipedal three-toed dinosaur footprints. The views of the surrounding area from the top of the mesa weren’t too bad either!
Even though Sand Caves in Southern Utah were not created by Mother Nature, it’s well-worth the easy hike off of Highway 89 to see these beautiful caves.
The Belly of the Dragon hike can be cut as short as a half mile by just going from one end of the tunnel to the other and back, or it can be extended for another four to five miles to view the little slot canyon at the far end of the sandy trail.
Whether choosing to sand board, motorbike, ride your dune buggy, or hike, Coral Pink Sand Dunes has 3,730 acres of coral pink desert sand just waiting to be explored.
Bryce Canyon National Park, one of Utah’s Mighty 5, is one of my favorite parks. There’s always been a special place in my heart for those cute hoodoos.
Located within Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Horseshoe Bend is a beautiful horseshoe shaped carving etched away over the course of millions of years by the Colorado River which now extends 1,000 feet deep into the sandstone desert landscape.
The walking tour through Lower Antelope Canyon located on Navajo Land near Page, Arizona takes visitors through breathtakingly beautiful slot canyons. It’s a photographer’s paradise, so Bill and I were in heaven!
Our visit to Lake Powell and the Glen Canyon Dam was quite fun. The spectacular views of the massive dam and beautiful lake provided us with unforgettable memories.
The experience of mountain biking in Southern Utah was something we wanted to share with our kids. My only request was to find an easier trail without the rocks that last year’s mountain biking excursion threw my way! We avoided the rocks, but found ourselves riding along cliffs that dropped off hundreds of feet to a gulch below instead!
We had a fantastic time out west and can’t wait until our next trip with our family and have already begun discussing the possibilities. We’re pretty sure this will become an annual thing!
- How do you organize your photos – online, in old-fashioned photo albums, or both?
- Where’s your favorite vacation spot?
- Any locations to which you’ve traveled, but would never return?