The Grand Circle tour brought us on a round-trip drive of about 1500 miles, give or take a bit, and through Nevada, Utah and Arizona. We flew in to Vegas and rented a car and headed out on a week and a half long trip. We went to Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, then a scenic route drive to Capitol Reef where we drove through The Gorge. Next we hit Arches National Park and Canyonlands National park both in the same day. We visited the Natural Bridges National Monument, drove through the Moki Dugway and on to Monument Valley. Lastly, we took a long scenic drive to the Grand Canyon, and ended back up in Vegas to fly home.
It was a whirlwind trip, with different places to be and different things to see every day, with a lot of driving in between. In those 10 days, we saw all kinds of weather, from beautiful sunshine, to snow on the mountains, to a lightning storm over the canyons, a bit of hail, a rainbow, and a torrential desert downpour, the type that would cause flash floods. I was joking that the only thing we hadn’t seen yet was a tornado!
My favorite part of this trip… there were so many! I got to walk underneath a waterfall in Zion National Park. Bryce Canyon was the first place I fell in love with, there are just so many formations there that could keep a photographer happy for weeks and weeks. The Gorge at Capitol Reef was really cool too, seeing the place where the original settlers had etched their name in the rock, and then how far down the water had worn away the rock/riverbed and knowing that where we were walking was subject to flash flooding in bad weather, that was crazy. The Moki Dugway looked so cool from above, seeing the zig-zagging lines across the colorful tapestry of the ground below. The storm that we encountered at the Canyonlands was scary in a really awesome way. I wish I had a flash trigger to capture photos of the lightning strikes and the dust storm that the winds raised.
It was kind of funny, after a week of canyons and rocks, by the time we got to the Grand Canyon, I was almost like “meh, another hole in the ground.” All kidding aside, the Grand Canyon was really cool too. At a few of the viewpoints, I was able to get out to the edge and seeing that vastness really makes you feel small.