Our last day in Utah was a great one! We headed back to Needles in canyonlands to do the Cheslor overlook. Except for the dirt road that kept me praying towards the end the trail was terrific! It has you climbing up , down, and through beautiful rocks formations. And at the end the view is really spectacular!! We leave Utah tomorrow and consider ourselves fortunate to have the cold crisp air, blue skies, even snow flurries at time. But most of all we loved the beauty Utah had to offer
Yes I would do it all over again!!! “You’re crazy “ was the response I got when I told people I was about to go on a four and half month road trip with my husband. But, they don’t know what’s it like to travel with Brant. It means hours of great music he downloads just for you, a history lesson as you enter all the parks, free lessons on how to get just the perfect shot, someone who helps a lost traveler by sharing his altrails maps or suggestions on where the best trails and places are ,someone who slows down around the sheer drop offs because the knows you’re terrified and gives up going on a trail or some roads again because he knows you are terrified lol, someone who picks up trash as he hikes and carries around recycling in his truck for days until he finds a bin to help the environment, someone who is not afraid to explore and research what’s around the corner, but most of all traveling with Brant is like being with someone 24/7 that truly loves what God has created and appreciates it and respects it like no other. Brant embraces adventures and helps you to see and do things you might otherwise pass by. Yes we had our moments , mostly when I was hungry or tired, but they were just that … moments. So after driving over 18000 miles and over four months with him (and we are not done yet!) I am counting the days until I get to climb in the seat next to him and do it all over again. So thank you Brant with all my heart. I love you more each day!!
Yesterday was such a great surprise. After the let down at Arches, we headed to Island in the Sky in Canyonlands and it was incredible!! We did the Murphy view point trail and the lookout trail. The views were just as if not more beautiful than the Grand Canyon! The colors and layers with the snow capped mountains in the background. We did manage to see the famous Mesa arch as well. Although I had to yell at a tourist to stop climbing on top of the arch. Over 50 people sat and watched and yet brant and I were the only ones telling him to get off !! Incredible!!We then headed to Deadhorse state park for sunset. Again just beautiful!! Today we opted for a scenic drive on the La Salle loop that took you up into the mountains only to end you at the beautiful red rock. All was incredible except for the lovely dirt road that took us two miles up a god forsaken road with snow and ice on it. But once down, the beauty continued. We again ended our day with some hiking at Deadhorse state park and sunset. Having done all we can here, we are checking out of Moab and heading to Monticello to hike one more day in the Needles section of the Canyonlands before leaving the area altogether. The weather has been a brisk 32 in the morning but warms up to about 60 during the day. Lots of snow on the mountain tops and perfect weather for hiking. Moab has been beautiful but can’t say you need more than 2-3 days here. Arches especially was a let down. Way too crowded and except for double arch, I can’t say the rest of it came close to the beauty we have seen other places. Canyonlands however is something to see!!
Last two days have been busy ones. Yesterday we headed to the Needles area of Canyonlands. We started one hike and ended up on another. After 3 hours of hiking in beautiful rock, I hit a scramble that was just too sketchy for me and we turned around at my request. We hit snow , rain , and some cold wind. The terrain was beautiful but it is easy to see how people get turned around and lost in these areas. We did see a beautiful sunset before heading back to Moab. Today we headed straight to Arches and yes they are right about the traffic and mobs of people. We opted out of a long hike after doing 9 miles yesterday and hit all the arches. Double arch was just spectacular!!! The blue sky just made it even more colorful. Thanks to the advice from Joanne , we headed to Red Cliff lodge Although the restaurant was closed, the drive was incredible and for me the best part of the day. The entire drive there was some of the best scenery you will see in the area!! Tomorrow we head to the Island in the Sky area in Canyonlands and hope to get some more hiking in. I will have to say we were spoiled coming from Zion and Antelope Canyon and this doesn’t seem to be as spectacular although pretty in it’s own way.
Yesterday we tried driving around but with 40 mph winds and clouds , well we took a few shots including sunset and stared to pack up. We started our day early with sunrise in monument valley and it was spectacular!!! Couldn’t resist but stop and get a shot at the famous Forrest Gump spot as well then headed towards Moab. Had a surprise when we got a snow storm in Monticello driving a scenic route off the highway. Just spectacular. We also got to see some drawings made between 300-3000 years ago called petroglyphs. Just incredible to see!! The rest of the drive gave us a glimpse what the next week was going to be like hiking this area. Beauty everywhere!! Just hope the snow holds off a little longer 🙏
We arrived to Monument Valley with blue skies. Knowing the weather was going to turn soon we headed right to the self guided road tour. That takes you through 17 miles if the most incredible landscape!! Yes it helped having four wheel drive and the roads were very rough, but we saw just about every car on the path. Another place where pictures just don’t do it justice. Here and back at Antelope Canyon area it just feels so spiritual. Everything just feels alive, even the rocks. Brant even noticed a huge monument that reminded us both of Jesus!! Just as we set up for the sunset shots, the wind we knew was coming arrived. If you have ever been in a blizzard well it’s the same thing but with sand. Brant noticed his hair was reddish when we got back to our cabin. As I sit here, the windows and doors are shaking. Incredible!! After some rain tonight , we hope to have another great day. So far this has not disappointed !!
We have been in Page , Arizona for two days visiting Antelope Canyon, Vermillion Cliffs, and Horse shoe bend. I never get used to the huge red cliffs towering over you as you drive through the valleys as well as the roads that barely hang off the cliffs. Horseshoe bend looks just like the pictures!! Neat to see boats and campers down below. Vermillion cliffs was neat to drive through. Unfortunately most of the hikes need permits these days or you have e to drive off road for over an hour at least. But the scenic drive was well worth. It. Today was the day we came for… the slots. We booked three tours, upper, lower , and canyon x. They are all very different. The lower one we booked through Dixie tours. You show up on site and are lead into the slots. The colors and shapes were amazing. The second one was through antelope tours to the upper slots. Well you show up at their office and put on the back of a truck where you share a seatbelt with your husband. You then drive 60 mph down the same roads where I would tell my husband to slow down. Only this time you are in an open truck. You get to a location and drive another 10 minutes through sand and hills ( definitely thankful for the masks). I will say when you arrive you see some of the most fascinating colors and shapes. Our guide would take our phones and take pictures for us or show us how to get great shots. So dealing with the drive was well worth it. The last one, Canyon x was last minute and it was ok. If you can’t get into the other two it’s an alternative. Not as much to see and the tour guide really just lets you walk through. She does very little in regards to guiding you. The walk up and back into the slots is definitely a workout and not for someone with leg or foot problems. Overall, we felt we definitely got our money’s with today and really some great pictures!! Something very different than we have seen or done on this whole trip. Tomorrow we leave for Monument Valley for a short stay and some more beautiful views
Well we made it to the north rim of the Grand Canyon and got two huge surprises!! The ride up was lined with the most spectacular yellow aspens and some oranges. I’ve never seen anything like it!!! Truthfully that was my favorite part of the day. The second surprise was that due to the cold front that went through the day before , there was a temperature inversion. That means that there was a total fog covering the entire Canyon!!! They say it’s rare and it was beautiful but we could barely see anything. Fortunately we waited around and it all cleared off to give us the view we were waiting for and it was something !!!! Eleven years ago I had to crawl on my hands and knees to get ten feet from the edge to get a picture with my family. Fortunately today I was able to go right up to the edge to take in the sites. Even managed to get on the natural arch of angels landing. Making progress!!! Although we had planned to camp up at the campsite the 41 degree weather changed our minds and we headed back to our cabin below. Again the ride was spectacular through all the colors at the aspens. One has to watch out fir all the moose deer. They were everywhere as the sun was going down and we had a few near Misses!
Today we actually headed back to Zion but on the side closer to us. We hiked in the Observation point via Mesa trail. Just spectacular!! The whole trail is beautiful but at the end you get to see the whole valley of Zion park. Even though I’m not thrilled with heights I went close enough to the edge fir pictures. Best hike and view in the whole park!! We then went through Pink Sand Dunes state park and again beautiful. Not really pink but neat still the same. Tomorrow is moving day and we head to Antelope Canyon where we will take some tours for the first time in this trip.
Yesterday was moving day. Always hard to leave a beautiful area and anxious to see what our next stop will be like. After getting the window replaced on Brants door we headed towards the Grand Canyon. We made some changes and decided to stay just outside the park so we could explore more areas so we landed in Kanab. After checking in a guest told us we needed to head up to Duck Lake and hour away. Wow!! Did not disappoint . The fall colors were everywhere and the drive beautiful. We passed and cave attraction and pink sands park we may go back to visit. Today is a rainy day and we finally caught up on some much needed sleep. Not sure what today brings but will be headed to the North Rim tomorrow!!