Since we didn’t do a family road trip this summer because of our move, Robin and I decided to pack up the kids and head for Arches National Park on Thursday through Saturday of this week. We had a fantastic time together. The drive on Thursday morning took about four and a half hours, including a stop for breakfast at the McDonald’s in Price, Utah. We arrived at the Arches National Park Visitor Center about 1:00 and were eating lunch by “Balanced Rock” by 2:30. The temperature was in the 40s for most of the time, which wasn’t bad when the sun was shining. (Although when the sun went behind the clouds and the wind was blowing, it was quite uncomfortable.) Thankfully, the sun was shining for most of the day on Friday and Saturday and the park wasn’t too crowded since we’re in the “off-season.” I grateful that I listened to Robin’s advice and didn’t try to do too much sightseeing and hiking on any given day so the kids wouldn’t be worn out. We were also careful to keep the kids well fed, watered and pottied so that spirits remain high. And it seemed to work very well. We hiked about 10 miles total over the three days and saw pretty much everything we wanted to see.
On Thursday we visited Balanced Rock, the Windows, Turret Arch, and we hiked to a viewpoint for Delicate Arch in the distance. On Friday morning we hike around the Devil’s Garden area and saw Sand Dune Arch, Broken Arch, Skyline Arch, Tunnel Arch, Pine Tree Arch and Landscape Arch (this one is as long as a football field; very impressive.) We then drove out to Dead Horse Point (about 45 minutes away) and saw some pretty amazing views at the edge of the canyon. Saturday morning we hiked up to Delicate Arch and really enjoyed the views. We then drove west along I-70 in a three hour trip to Manti, where Robin’s grandfather and grandmother were celebrating their 90th and 89th birthdays respectively. By 7:30, we arrived back in our Lehi home after having driven nearly 700 miles in our old minivan.
The Moab hotel where we stayed had a hot tub, so each of the two nights we were there, we soaked in the jacuzzi for a while, which was welcome after hiking throughout each day. The hotel offered a free hot breakfast each morning and we did picnic lunches in the park each day, followed by dinner in a restaurant each evening. Friday night’s dinner was particularly interesting at the Sunset Cafe, in an old mansion on top of the hill overlooking the city. Built in the 1950s by Charlie Steen, a prospector who found a vien of much-sought-after uranium, this old home, now restaurant, has a very interesting history. The food was decent, although pricey enough that I just got the soup!
Anyway, we had a great time. Here are a few pictures from our trip. Just click on the picture for a better view.