[CANYON POINT, UTAH] — This is a nice easy hour hike, right off the highway just north of Amangiri on Hwy 89. The Paria Rimrocks Toadstool hoodoos are just a hoot. It’s like the background for a Road Runner cartoon. You park the car and hike up through deep rust colored stratified rocks that are fun just to ramble up and over and discover great niches of rock formations. Continue further up and off the trail and the canyon walls form a great amphitheater. Keep poking around and one alcove will open up to the most magical little isolated bowl with dozens of toadstools. The all white coloration is almost vertigo-inducing in its refection of the light. And with hardly anyone else around (we only had three people on the trail over two hours) it makes it that much more special…and eerie.
Here’s the BLM site. And TripAdvisor’s 97% rating.
A rock jayhawk made of chalk.
Sit down right here and spend some time counting the layers and marveling at what the world has made.
At the far end of the trail you’ll run into this great white wall and find your way into this secret alcove that opens up onto this great amphitheater of monochromatic hoodoos. Because of the sun and muted sandstone coloration, distances and shapes are distorted and you feel like you’re on mushrooms…
ANTELOPE CANYON — There’s an upper and lower Antelope Canyon, one open and the other is Navajo land that you have to hire one of their unhappy guides to walk you down the canyon without saying much. But give them your camera and they know how to change all the settings to get the most out of any shot…even take them for you and hand your camera back. A good tip ensures you get some amazing pictures.
The unaffected tour guides lead you to this slight yaw in the ground and you can’t imagine that that’s where you’ll go. But you do, slowly descending into this really cool crevasse that opens up into a great cathedral of colors, shapes and textures. You’ll want to spend hours here.
And of course, Lake Powell is right around the corner.
AMANGIRI TRAIL SYSTEM — The Amangiri has its own system of trails that you can take on your own or have a guide. One of the most popular and a very easy hike is the Cave Trail, which leaves the main lodge and through scrub brush until you find an enormous cave. The size is deceiving until you get up into it. Well worth it. They have other hikes, too.
All of this….right outside the hotel windows…
You can take the trails by yourself, but the best thing about Amangiri is their adventure guides that bring all the grandeur to life: the history, the lore, the geology. And move you from “Wow, that’s neat.” to “Holy cow was that cool.” Turning rocks into stories….
HORSESHOE BEND OVERLOOK — Just up from the Lake Powell dam and just off the roadway is the area’s #1 attraction, Horseshoe Bend. Crowded, but stunning. And hard to fit in your camera frame. Go in the morning, lest your photos turn out like this:
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