If you want to visit a national park, you can't go wrong with the southern part of Utah. The bottom third of the state is wall to wall with national parks and monuments. And the parts that aren't parks, just as well could be. We felt torn by limited time and had a hard time deciding which park to devote the day to. The landscape is awesome and awful. The soft, red sandstone has been eroded by wind and water into fanciful shapes and sliced by rivers into deep canyons. I never think about geology when I'm at home, but in this environment it's easy to think about volcanoes erupting, plate tectonics, and upthrusts. Although we are in the high desert, there must have been some rain here not too long ago. We were surprised to see flowers blooming during this fall season. It's nice to be back in wearing shorts weather. From my vague memories of our last visit here summer of 1979, it was blisteringly hot.
After relocating to Moab, we spent the rest of the day enjoying Canyonlands National Park
. The amazing landscape here has been cut by the Green and Colorado Rivers. There are only two paved access roads to the park and they are widely separated from one another by the deep canyon. It also is possible to drive a dirt road along the bottom of the canyon. We could see the cars looking like ants. It appeared that the road was a flat easy drive - once you had figured out how to get from the rim where we were down to the bottom. The ranger told us it takes two days to drive this 100 mile route. I could struggle for adjectives and descriptive language, but the pictures can speak better for me.