The Wonders Of Red-Rock Country In June Page 2

The Vast Solitude Of Canyonlands
Canyonlands is the largest national park in Utah. It's divided into three sections by the Green and Colorado Rivers: The Island in the Sky, The Needles, and The Maze. These areas can best be seen when you travel off the beaten path. The Island in the Sky section is a massive 1500-foot mesa that features Upheaval Dome and Grand View Point. From the mesa's viewpoints, you can see almost 100 miles in any direction. One popular Island in the Sky photo spot is Mesa Arch, which is located at the end of a short trail.

The Needles offer a 10-mile paved scenic drive, but adventurous photographers who hike, backpack, or travel off-road via 4WD will be rewarded by arches, canyons, and beautiful rock formations. If you're going this route, you'll need a day or two to explore this section. Otherwise, the paved scenic drive will take you about an hour.

The Maze is considered one of the most remote and inaccessible areas in the country. This area encompasses the Land of Standing Rocks, the Maze and Horseshoe Canyon, and is ideal if you want some serious backcountry travel and hiking.

In addition to an assortment of lenses, be sure to bring a tripod for capturing dramatic night scenes.

Where To Stay
There is a wide range of accommodations in Moab, ranging from campgrounds and motor home parks to bed and breakfast inns and four diamond resorts. June is part of Moab's busiest season, so make reservations early. I've suggested just a few of Moab's diverse accommodations. For more lodging info, call the Moab Area Travel Council at 800/635-6622.

Archway Inn
Close to the entrance to Arches National Park, this attractive motel offers southwest ambiance, continental breakfast, a pool and Jacuzzi, an exercise room and a gift shop.

Sorrel River Ranch Resort & Spa
This luxurious resort hotel is located outside of Moab on the banks of the Colorado River. It offers river-front rooms and suites with fireplaces, jetted tubs and private decks, a full-service spa, restaurant, heated pool, and horseback riding.

Sunflower Hill Bed & Breakfast Inn
Part of this original house was built over a century ago out of adobe. You'll stay in either a historic farmhouse or a two-story garden cottage. Amenities include a full breakfast and beautifully decorated rooms in each of the inn's 12 units.

Changeable Weather
In late May and June, daytime temperatures range from about 82--93°. Wear lots of sun protection and a hat when you're outdoors. Hiking shoes are a must when exploring canyon country, and carry an ample amount of water wherever you go (at least a gallon per person).

A camera backpack is a good way to carry your camera, lenses, film, memory cards and other accessories. Bring a wide angle zoom lens to accommodate broad vistas and a telephoto to bring faraway scenes in close. If you're photographing wildflowers in the La Sal Mountains, you may want to bring a lens with close-up or macro capability.

More Online
These sites offer detailed information about Moab and the surrounding area: