Utah has some wonderful treasures right in state, like five national parks. Last week I got to discover two of them for the very first time. Aren’t they beautiful?
In company with my brother and sister-in-law, who are moving to Texas for the summer, we spent a couple days exploring Moab, or, more accurately, the national parks around Moab: Canyonlands and Arches! Canyonlands wasn’t as exciting as I hoped it would be, but it was still beautiful.
This is Dead Horse Point. It’s separate from Canyonlands, but it’s an interesting feature to see.
We only visited one side of the park, the one known as Island in the Sky. The other side may be a little more exciting. Someday maybe I’ll get to check it out. In any case, here’s a few more images.
The next day it was on to Arches! I was super excited to see this park, especially because it has one of Utah’s most iconic images in it, and of course that’s what I was anticipating the most: Delicate Arch! And we sure made the trek.
In case you’re wondering, the hike to Delicate Arch is very challenging. The app on my phone said it was moderate, but I think it kind of lied. You walk straight up the side of a slickrock mountain for 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile. It’s crazy, but very fun to see such a Utah icon! Here’s where I made my error in judgment: I thought it we did the hardest thing first everything else would be easy afterwards. Well … it was easier, but I didn’t take into account that we’d also get tired and be sore after the hard hike and less likely to do other ones. Oops! Oh well! We made it and enjoyed ourselves, and that’s what’s most important anyway, right? Below is the slickrock trail you hike to get up.
Other fun arches we saw include Sand Dune Arch, Broken Arch, Skyline Arch, Tunnel Arch and Pine Arch. I love the unique geology involved with these features!
Hands down my favorite arch was Double Arch. It looks so cool! And when you walk up to it, it’s really awe-inspiring how massive it is. See the tiny ant-looking people in the picture? LOVE Double Arch.
Finally, here’s the Windows and Turret Arch. See if you can tell which is which.
There’s some pretty awesome rock formations throughout the park, like Fiery Furnace (it’s called that because of how it looks when the sun shines on it a certain way, which I didn’t see because I wasn’t there at the right time) or these cool-looking rock formations. My sister-in-law and I thought one looked like a horse and the other a lion. Did you know there’s a Y cave in Arches?
Despite the sunburns and some exhaustion after a hot strenuous day of hiking … a completely worthwhile trip. I’d definitely recommend Moab as a place to visit. And we barely scratched the surface of all it has to offer. Arches and Canyonlands are Utah treasures for sure.