Hiking in Utah – Trip Overview

This is a Trip Overview as we have TONS of photos.

Click on the Photo Links to see the pics.

Trip Overview || Timpanogos || Capitol Reef || Escalante || Peekaboo and Spooky || Tropic || Kanarraville || St George

We usually go someplace in the shoulder season to ride. Since we both had injuries, and we couldn’t drive to the US we decided to fly down and check out some areas we don’t normally do when we have our bikes. It was nice to travel light and hike in some less crowded places. We booked hotels with Booking.com which was really easy and the more you use it the more discounts you get. I’m at 10-15% now! We planned our hikes on Alltrails, but used GAIA GPS to navigate since we already paid for this. If you’re a hiker AllTrails would be better.

We flew into Salt Lake, flew out of Las Vegas, rented a Kia Sorento from Avis.

We stayed at the Little American Hotel in Salt Lake City, picked up some beer at Level Crossing, Saltfire and Grid City Beer Works.

We then drove South to Torrey over Mt Timpanogos – The Alpine Scenic Byway Hwy 92 – We then drove via Hwy 24 tby Fish Lake to Torrey. Need to check this area out with the bikes!

We stayed at the Noor Hotel in Torrey. There are quite a few places to eat in Torrey, it’s actually a nice town, but not much was open at this time. For breakfast we had to go into Bicknell and eat at the Sunglow Motel and Family Restaurant. At this point it started to snow ALOT, we drove up to Sunglow Campground to check it out and it would be a great place to camp! For dinner the two nights in Torrey we ate at La Cueva Mexican, go early there was a line up. And Rim Rock, where we made a reservation.

We did a short hike in Capitol Reef National Park – Hickman Bridge – the weather was still uncooperative. We were going to do the Scenic Drive into Capitol Reef but it was closed due to weather.

The next day we did a big hike on Navajo Knobs. Starts at the Hickman Bridge trailhead along the rim, 15.6km out and back, 810 elevation change. Worthy hike.

From there we drove over the Snowy Scenic Hwy 12. We were hoping to hike up Boulder Mountain but there was too much snow. GAIA can show you how many trails are in this area. So we just drove to Escalante where we stayed at the Inn of Escalante. Recommend this place, very comfortable and homey rooms. The next day we drove to the BLM office in Escalante which is very informative. We decided this day to drive up to Boulder and drive part way on the Burr Trail, which we drove years ago on our first trip to this area. Next time we’ll drive from Fruita in Capitol Reef to Boulder via this route, weather permitting, as it is an amazing drive. We did a short hike to a slot canyon and saw a decaying old ruin.

In Boulder we checked out the Anasazi State park where we learned about the people who lived here before colonization. Back in Escalante we drove to the Petrified Forest State Park and did a worthy hike in this area. There is also a mountain bike trail through the park. Eagle View.

The next day we did something we don’t normally do. An Epic Hike! We drove along Hole in the Rocks road to 28miles to the Upper Dry Fork parking lot. From there we hiked Dry Fork Narrows, up Peekaboo, down Spooky and back along the Rim Trail. Do this trail early, wear shoes you don’t mind getting wet. Do it clockwise. I’d even bring a strap or short rope to help people get up some of the sections.

In Escalante we ate Pizza and a breakfast at Escalante Outfitters – good standard fair with outdoor store attached. One dinner at Georgies Outdoor Mexian Cafe – Food truck that closes at 6:00! And a simple breakfast, lunch and dinner to go at Ranch Dog Kitchen.

We were then off to Tropic to explore near Bryce Canyon. We stayed at the Bryce Pioneer Village. The rooms were dark and small, but it had a pool, hot tub and nice out door areas to hang before it got too cold or dark. Also easy drive to Bryce Canyon and other hikes/bikes in the area.

We ate breakfast at the Gas station restaurant – Route 12 Grill – GOOD BURRITOS! Then at Rustlers Restaurant, which was pretty standard food, better than Cowboy near Bryce…

The next day we did a hike in Kodachrome State Park, very cool area to check out and you can ride on their sandy trails too! This would be a nice place to camp as well. After the hike we drove to Willis Creek Narrows, another slot canyon hike we’ll have to check out another day. The drive in, on Skutumpah Rd, was good, despite the warnings. May not be as good if it’s wet though. We ate dinner that night at Cowboy Bufffet and Steak Room near Bryce Canyon. DON’T EAT HERE. Since we didn’t make a reservation at Stone Hearth Grille in Tropic. EAT HERE .

That morning we did a short hike before Bryce at Mossy Cave. Then we drove to Cedar City on the I15 via Hwy143 to Hwy15 via Cedar Breaks near Brian Head at 31500 meters! Due to snow we did not hike… We then drove to Cedar City and did the Spring Canyon hike at Kannaraville. In Cedar City we stayed at the Best Western Plus – very nice hotel, ok standard Best Western Breakfast, and ate dinner at the Sizzler… yes… it was ok. No Salad Bar. Even if it wasn’t Covid time I don’t think I’d go near that salad bar. Better than Cowboy at Bryce.

The following day we drove into Hurricane to get our COVID Rapid PCR test for our Wednesday flight home. It was either here or Las Vegas for the Rapid PCR test. We then drove back and did another hike in Kannaraville to Kannarra Creek Canyon Trail, we had to pay a fee to hike this trail, but funds going to the City.

We stayed at the Red Lion Inn in St. George, which was nice, central, had a hot tub and pool. The breakfast here was sketchy, very crowded, lots of kids and the sanitation at the best of times was questionable. The next day we ate at Black Bear Diner. Which was, despite some comments, many steps above Red Lion in cleanliness and quality. In St George we ate at Irmita’s Casita, very authentic and good Mexican food and Cliffside restaurant as well.

We did a hike near Ivan’s in Snow Canyon State Park, the Tuacahn and Whiptail Loop. Really good hike. Route back on the road was boring though.

We then drove to Las Vegas to fly back to Canada.

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