So Much To See When We Explored The Utah National Parks
Fall colours greeted us when we started in Salt Lake City. Great outdoor scenery delighted us at the State and National Parks in Utah. Hikes provided a change of pace. But we got a real dose of adventure when we headed off-road by jeep.
Chasing The Fall Colours
We started our visit to Utah in Salt Lake City. It took us awhile to adjust to the high altitude. But then we headed off to explore. A day trip around the Mt Nebo Scenic Loop provided us with our first view of the fall colours. And some amazing vistas along the way.
One day we met up with friends. And they took us around to all their favourite places as we drove through the Wasatch Mountains to Park City. It was so great to visit the lakes and mountains resplendent in fall colours.
Our day trips from Salt Lake City gave us our first view of the majesty of Utah’s outdoor spaces when we visited and explored the Utah National Parks.
Find A Base To Explore The National Parks
After we visited Salt Lake City, we headed southeast. Moab was our base as we explored several of the Utah National Parks. But the town provided so much more! We enjoyed our hotel with a view of the red rocks right out our window. And those rocks towered over the pool as we unwound every day.
The Colorado River went through Moab. A trip along the river was fun by car or by bike. And some people even went rock climbing!
For our visit to Zion, we stayed in the small town of Virgin. It was a good base outside the park. The pool had another stunning view. And we ate so well at local spots!
We were glad we chose local spots as bases to explore the Utah National Parks. They offered many attractions that kept us fed and entertained. But we wished we booked a bit earlier and stayed inside of both Bryce and Zion parks. The sunrise and sunset views would have been spectacular!
The First Utah National Parks Were Visited From Moab
The first up was a visit to Arches National Park. We drove through the park and saw the great variety of arches that we expected. Views of the Windows, Skyline and Delicate Arches did not disappoint.
But we also found such a wide array of interesting rock structures. Rock walls, statues and towers intrigued us. Our first stop to visit Arches National Park whetted our appetite for how stunning the Utah National Parks were.
For a day trip, we explored Canyonlands National Park. The scenic drive took us along the top of the canyon. Each viewpoint provided views of expansive vistas over large rips in the earth.
We saw the twisting canyons carved by the Green and Colorado Rivers. And marvelled at the power of Mother Nature. Our visit to Canyonlands National Park provided us with a taste of Island in the Sky. But we knew there were other parts of this park to visit on a return visit.
On our travel day when we left Moab, we enjoyed the chance to explore Capitol Reef National Park. We loved the great view of the uplifted rocks of the Waterpocket Fold.
And when we took the off-road path into Capitol Gorge, the narrow dirt lane provided yet more fascinating and up-close views of the rock faces. We were very glad we took the Scenic Byway 24 and stopped at Capitol Reef National Park on our travel day.
We explored the Utah National Parks in this southeastern region of Utah. And were happy we had more planned.
More National Parks In The Southwestern Region Of Utah
After Moab we headed to the southwestern region of Utah and visited Bryce Canyon National Park. We looked for the iconic hoodoo rock features this park was known for. And certainly found amazing vistas filled with hoodoos.
But on our visit to Bryce Canyon, we were surprised with the panoramic views we got over the canyon floors. And we even found more arches. We only wished we visited Bryce Canyon for the stunning sunrise views.
We left the mighty Zion National Park for the last. Many of the Utah National Parks we explored were viewed from the top of the canyons. But in Zion we explored deep in the canyon. The rocks of Zion towered over our heads.
We enjoyed several hikes in Zion National Park as we explored the Riverside Walk and the trail to the Emerald Pools. But there were so many other hikes that were left for a return visit.
We enjoyed our days as we explored the Utah National Parks in the southwestern region. They certainly left us wanting more!
Don’t Miss The Utah State Parks
When we planned to visit the Utah National Parks, we never really looked into the state parks. But we discovered a real treat on this trip to Utah.
When we stayed in Salt Lake City, we explored our first Utah state park as we drove the Mt Nebo Scenic Loop and looked at the fall colours. We even got our first view of hoodoos to tease us before we visited Bryce Canyon!
On our day trip to visit Canyonlands National Park, we started our day with amazing views out over the canyons at Dead Horse State Park.
When we drove along Scenic Byway 24, our first stop was to see the fun and whimsical Goblins Valley National Park.
We planned to explore the National Parks. But we were glad we added the state parks to our itinerary. And there were so many we did not see on this trip!
Don’t Miss A Little Excitement On Your Visit
There were all kinds of way to get your adrenaline going when we explored the Utah National Parks. Most of the times, our hikes were relatively easy for anyone to do. But the parks offered many hikes that really were for more serious hikers. Hiking in water or on the top of narrow rock fins were things some people planned. And for more excitement, some tried repelling down the rocks.
We got our hearts racing when we took an off-road jeep adventure from Moab. We expected a pretty tame trip along level ground. What we got was a rock climbing jeep that took us up and down rock faces. Until we finished hours later with a sunset view.
There were lots of adventure tours into the Utah National Parks. A little bit of something for everyone.
We Explored The Utah National Parks And Fell In Love
On our road trip around Utah and Arizona, we were glad we explored the Utah National Parks and were stunned with the beauty we found. There were iconic sights and surprises too. One day in each park was definitely not enough to see and do it all.
The Utah State Parks were a delightful find on our visit to Utah. The parks provided yet more reasons why Utah is known for its outdoor scenery.
We found fun and adventure on our visit. And even managed to get a short break now and then.
We were glad we purchased a National Park Pass. It made it easy to visit many parks and enter multiple times.
Have you explored the Utah National Parks? Did you leave with a favourite park?
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