Somehow I actually managed to convince my aerophobic dad to get on a plane and make his first trip to the Rocky Mountains. Actually, I bribed him: I bought him a plane ticket and told him it was his chance to show me how good he was at finishing drywall. He took the bait. So after he worked on my basement for two straight days, we got him out of the house and took him on a round-robin tour of southern Utah. We took him to Goblin Valley State Park, Chute Canyon in the San Rafael Swell, Robber’s Roost at the Dirty Devil River, Leprechaun Canyon in North Wash Canyon, the Colorado River and Lake Powell at Hite, UT, White Canyon, Cedar Mesa, Valley of the Gods, Goose Necks State Park, Arches National Park, and Canyonlands National Park.
Whew! We did a LOT of driving! But we also did a lot of hiking. We hiked in Goblin Valley, Chute Canyon, Robber’s Roost, Leprechaun Canyon, Arches, and Canyonlands…so the driving didn’t keep us from exploring, also.
We camped Saturday night in Valley of the Gods, and we awoke Sunday morning to a bunch of hot air balloons taking off in the valley. That was pretty cool.
This was a great trip because we saw several parts of Utah we hadn’t been to since soon after we moved here. But the best part was showing it all to my dad. He had never been out west, so the vastness and geology of everything really amazed him. I enjoyed showing him the goblins of rock in Goblin Valley, the echo of the canyon in Chute Canyon, the slickrock at Robber’s Roost, the slot canyon in Leprechaun Canyon, the monoliths of Valley of the Gods, the sheer size of the Goosenecks of the San Juan River, the arches of Arches, and the shear magnitude of Canyonlands. I think he was truly awed.
If you’ve got family who have never seen southern Utah, then this is a great primer for introducing them to what is out there.