We spent five weeks in October and November of 1997 exploring the national and state parks of southern Utah. That area is just thick with parks. And in the main tourist season, it's also thick with tourists. But our visit was fairly late in the fall and that turned out to be an excellent time to visit. There were no crowds of people and we didn't have to sweat in the terrible heat of the summer. Most of the time we were at fairly high elevations, 5000 feet or more. The nights were chilly, often below freezing, but the daytime temperatures were very pleasant, providing excellent weather for hiking.

Note: To see a larger, clearer, version of the pictures below, just click on them.

Admiring the view of the valley at Zion National Park
Looking out over the valley of Zion National Park.
Dead Horse Point State Park
The view from Dead Horse Point State Park, with the Colorado River winding through it.
Climbing up to Angel's Landing
Angel's Landing is the name of this rock. The trail to the top crosses the narrow spine, with very sheer cliffs on both sides of the trail. Not a good hike for those afraid of heights, especially when the wind is blowing.
The view down from Angel's Landing
Looking down at the road where we started, from the top of Angel's Landing. I'm sitting on the edge of the sheer cliff you see in the picture on the left. Don't tell my mom.
Weird rock formations at Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon contains thousands of these unique rock formations.
Close-up of a hoodoo at Bryce Canyon
The bizarrely eroded rocks are called hoodoos. Would I kid you? Who do you think I am?
Autumn colors at Capital Reef
The cottonwood trees were beautiful this time of year. This picture was taken in Capital Reef National Park.
Natural bridge
Owachomo Bridge at the Natural Bridges National Monument. What's the difference between a bridge and an arch? Bridges are formed by running water eroding the rock underneath them. Arches are formed by wind, rain, ice and other types of erosion.
Double Arch
Arches National Park is packed with beautiful arches. This double one was my probably my favorite.
Double O Arch (you can only see one of the O's in this picture)
It was a four mile hike out to this arch. Storm clouds blew in while we were there, and we feared we were in for a nasty soaking. But the rain held off until we got back to camp.

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