Tag Archives: Utah backpacking

June 15, 2017 Ancient Puebloan ruin in Woodenshoe Canyon, Dark Canyon Wilderness, Utah.

3-Minute Read: Backpacking Utah’s Dark Canyon Wilderness

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By Michael Lanza

About five miles down Woodenshoe Canyon, in southeast Utah’s Dark Canyon Wilderness, David stops on the trail ahead of me and points to a barely distinguishable feature in the cliffs above us. We drop our backpacks and follow a faint path in the sand and up onto sandstone slabs, scrambling and zigzagging our way up onto a wide ledge below an overhanging cliff face. In the shaded alcove below that overhang, we stop before the ruins of a tiny, one-room stone structure perhaps large enough for two people to lie down inside, built centuries before Columbus arrived in the New World. Continue reading →

January 8, 2017 Hiking the Taylor Creek Trail, Zion National Park.

Photo Gallery: Hiking the Kolob Canyons of Zion National Park

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By Michael Lanza

Hiking in the Kolob Canyons area of Zion National Park, you get down to business with five-star scenery with your first step from your car. At the Lee Pass Trailhead, Taylor Creek Trailhead, or the Kolob Canyons Viewpoint, you’re immediately greeted with views of crimson cliffs soaring hundreds of feet tall. Then it just keeps getting better. Continue reading →

September 6, 2016 West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.

Ask Me: What’s Your Favorite Backpacking Trip in Zion National Park?

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Michael,

Say you have one last trip to Zion: a 3- to 4-night backpacking trip with a group of men in average condition anywhere in the park.

What trails do you have to see one more time? (Insert any insider details here.)

What month do you go?

You’ve sparked something in myself and a friend to see that place. I know permits are crucial, we’re already planning. I’ve read your articles that mostly include all members of the family (which I respect). Does the itinerary change when it’s just guys?

Thanks so much,

Steven
Longview, Texas Continue reading →

November 5, 2015 Above Crack-in-the-Wall, Coyote Gulch, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah.

Great Trip: Backpacking Coyote Gulch in Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

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By Michael Lanza

Whether you’re an expert desert backpacker, taking a first multi-day hike in the Southwest canyon country, or heading out with your family, the three-day hike of Coyote Gulch has everything you’d want in a canyon trip: soaring, redrock canyon walls that go for miles, surprisingly lush greenery, a year-round creek that saves you from having to carry a lot of water, and relatively easy hiking. Little wonder that this tributary canyon of the Escalante River, in southern Utah’s Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, has earned a reputation as a classic. Continue reading →

April 30, 2014 "Great overlook," second day, Beehive Traverse, Capitol Reef National Park.

The Most Beautiful Hike You’ve Never Heard Of: Crossing Utah’s Capitol Reef

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By Michael Lanza

We enter a steep, claustrophobically narrow gully, looking up at boulders that appear barely glued in place by a mortar of dried mud. Ready to rain sandstone jihad upon us, they send a silent message that we have taken a wrong turn in this unnamed side canyon in the wilds of southern Utah’s Capitol Reef National Park and should retreat—immediately. This seems about as likely to be our route as we are likely to run into a fish plucking a harp out here in the high desert. Continue reading →

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Grand Canyon Hiker