Tag: Utah

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

From the spectacular Grand Staircase with its cliffs and terraces, to the rugged Kaiparowits Plateau to the wonders of the Escalante River Gorges, the vast landscapes offer visitors to Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument a variety of recreational opportunities. The National Monument is divided into three distinct areas: the Grand Staircase, the Kaiparowits Plateau, and the Canyons (gorges) of the Escalante. Despite their different topographies, these three sections share characteristics: long distances, extremely difficult terrain, and a remoteness rarely found in the United States outside of Alaska.

Grand Staircase
According to a2zcamerablog, the land rises from the south in broad, sloping terraces. They form the Grand Staircase. The multicolored cliffs glow in red, orange, white, gray and pink. Together, these steep slopes represent 200 million years of geological history. The Grand Staircase is made of bright red Moenkopi sandstone, which contains many fossils of fish and early Triassic dinosaurs.

A little further north, the White Cliffs are composed of younger, gray shale rock. From the time when the sea covered the land here, deposits of shells, shark teeth and braziers can be found. Imprints of marsh plants are also evidence of ancient marine life. The pink cliffs at the top of Grand Staircase are deposits from what was once a freshwater lake. The Paria River and its tributaries carved these “rock stairs”. It is also home to Buckskin Gulch, the longest slot canyon in the world.

Kaiparowits Plateau
The highest part of the monument is the Kaiparowits Plateau. From the air, the plateau appears to fan out south of the town of Escalante into a vast gray-green scalene triangle that stretches far south to Lake Powell and the Paria Plateau. The more than 3,200 km² of the Kaiparowite form the wildest, driest and most remote part of the monument.

The fossil-rich rocks of the Kaiparowits Plateau contain probably “the best and most continuous record of late Cretaceous terrestrial life anywhere in the world.” The plateau has been described as a “stony, arid labyrinth of ravines” with a handful of streams. It is a land of great gorges, sheer cliffs and red hills of oxidized rock. They were created by underground coal fires and soils that are toxic to most plants. But it is also a land of wooded, level banks, thousand-year-old juniper trees and a rich variety of mammals and birds, including seventeen species of raptors.

Escalante Canyon’s 43-mile long straight cliffs mark the eastern rim of the plateau and culminate at Fiftymile Mountain in the southeast. Nowhere else do the words “wind, endless space, loneliness, silence and distance” apply better than here.

Canyons of the Escalante
The Canyons of the Escalante are made up of some of the most beautiful and scenic red rock formations in southern Utah. North of the Fiftymile Mountains is the Aquarius Plateau, dominated by the 11,300-foot (3,352 m) Boulder Mountain. To the east lies an expanse of light-colored Navajo sandstone carved by the Escalante River and its tributaries from the high plateau, a labyrinth of canyons.

The rocky country offers many surprises: deep in the gorges along the streams, lush shore worlds thrive: poplars, elders, willows, oaks and tamarisks often form an impenetrable thicket. Hanging gardens thrive above shady niches and rock caves. From the ledges high up on the cliff face you can hear the haunting song of the wren.

Access to the monument is via two paved roads: US 89 from the Kanab/Big Water area and US 12 from the Escalante/Boulder area. All other roads are very easy and hardly paved.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument information

Location and Size
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument covers 7,689 km² in southern Utah, from the city of Boulder in south-central Utah, along the foothills of the Boulder Mountains. At its widest point, it is nearly 90 miles (145 km) from Capitol Reef on the northeast boundary to Johnson Canyon near Kanab on the southwest rim. The monument includes the Grand Staircase in its western part, the Kaiparowits Plateau in the east, both enclosing the Escalante canyons. It was declared a National Monument in 1996 and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management.

by car
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is located in southern Utah, approximately 470 km (290 miles) south of Salt Lake City or 400 km (250 miles) east of Las Vegas. Two paved roads provide access to the monument: US-89 to the south and US-12 to the north. The monument is very remote, almost all of its north-south connections are primitive roads.

VUSA TIP: Do your research before venturing inside the monument. Be sure to take a very good, legible and understandable road map with you! Allow enough time, only drive a 4WD off-road vehicle. Consider your driving ability. Take plenty of water with you and make sure your vehicle is in good condition and has adequate provisions for emergencies.

Public Transport
There is no public transport to the monument.

Opening times and seasons
The monument is open 24 hours a day, all year round.

Visitor Centers
The BLM Information Centers are located on the periphery of the monument. BLM staff at the centers provide visitors with essential and detailed information, and also sell books and maps. All visitor centers are located in Utah. Utah is in the Mountain time zone and observes daylight saving time.

Paria Contact Station
The Paria Contact Station is open seven days a week from 08:00 to 16:30, March 15th to November 15th.

Kanab Visitor Center
The center is open daily from 08:00 to 16:30. 745 East Hwy 89, Kanab, UT 84741,
Tel: 435-644-4680

Escalante Interagency Visitor Center
The center is open daily from 08:00 to 16:30. 755 West Main, Escalante, UT 84726
Tel: 435-826-5499

Entrance Fees
There are no entrance fees to the monument.

Posy Lake
On the Hells Backbone road north of Escalante. Campgrounds, water, the lake is stocked with trout.

Blue Spruce Campground
A small campground on Hell’s Backbone road.

Calf Creek Recreation Area
Located off Highway 12, 26 km (16.3 miles) from Escalante. Campground with water, reservation required, 5 km (3 miles) hiking trail to Calf Creek Falls.

Deer Creek Campground
Located 10 km (6 miles) east of Boulder on the Burr Trail. Primitive campsite with toilets, no water available.

The climate in the Grand Staircase-Escalante is temperate and dry with an average annual rainfall of about 2,500 mm. From June to early September, thunderstorms roll in from the Pacific, Gulf of Mexico, and Southern California. From October to June, storms can blow in from the northwest.
The highest amounts of precipitation can be expected from November to March. In summer, temperatures range between 15°C (lowest) and 32°C (highest). In winter, the temperature range is lows of -9°C and highs of 4°C. Average snowfall is 71 cm, it can snow from October or November to March or April.
The best time to visit the monument is from late March to June and from early September to October. Weather conditions and water temperatures are usually the most favorable during this period. It is impossible to predict long term weather in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Average temperatures in Escalante, Utah in °C
Month Jan Feb March Apr May June July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Max 6 9 14 19 24 31 33 32 27 20 12 7
Min -8 -6 -2 1 6 9 13 13 8 2 -3 -8

Safety and Dangers
The typical dangers of a desert landscape lurk here. During the summer season, the sun is more intense and temperatures rise up to 38°C and more. The humidity is low. It is necessary to eat enough and drink at least 4 liters of water per day. For all activities you should always take enough water with you and wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing and a sun hat. Great importance should be attached to sun protection: Apply sunscreen with a high sun protection factor to all exposed areas of the skin. Strenuous activity should be done in the early morning or evening hours.

Trip Tips

Activities and Sightseeing
A vast expanse of rugged labyrinthine canyons and red cliffs characterize America’s newest national monument. Only really experienced hikers will be able to really enjoy this splendor. It’s not a place for RV vacationers or vacationers looking for a leisurely picnic. However, some spots in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument are suitable for a day tour or picnic. This includes:

Devils Garden Natural Area
Located 19 km (12 miles) down Hole in the Rock Road off US 12. There are unusual rock formations here. If you love hikes in beautiful countryside and great photo opportunities, this is the place for you. It is particularly beautiful here at dusk.

Paria Movie Set
Originally built in the 1960s, the “frontier town” has played host to film legends such as John Wayne, Clint Eastwood and Gregory Peck. The area is located on a dirt road between Kanab and Big Water City, 8 km (5 miles) northeast of Highway 89. This road is impassable during or shortly after rain.

Grosvenor Arch
Can be accessed off Highway 12 on a dirt road about 15 km (9 miles) southeast of Kodachrome Basin State Park. Grosvenor Arch is a collection of delicate white and gold stone arches that tower high above the ground.

The Coxcombs
A series of sandstone outcrops in the northeastern part of the monument, 5 km (3 miles) south of Grosvenor Arch.

Routes by car

The scenic Utah Highway 12 in the northern portion of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument runs east from Bryce Canyon National Park via routes Utah 20 and US 89. Escalante is 170 km (106 miles) south of I-70 if traveling from the east at the Fremont Junction exit on Utah 72.

US Highway 89’s southern section between Kanab, Utah and Page, Arizona offers spectacular views of the Vermilion Cliffs and Grand Staircase. Kanab is 124 km (77 miles) east of the Cedar City exit off I-15 via Routes Utah 9 through Zion National Park and to US-89.

Major routes in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

There are several gravel roads that can be driven on with normal cars when the weather is nice. The great landscape and the leisure opportunities make the trip an experience.

Pahreah Townsite Road: The 8 km (5 mile) gravel road is passable in dry weather but extremely slippery in wet conditions. The trail is a short jaunt into the Paria River Valley with its multicolored Badlands landscape. It leads to the Pahreah Townsite and the Paria Movie Set Location.

Johnson Canyon / Skutumpah Road: This paved but dirt road runs 74 km (46 miles) between Johnson Canyon and Kodachrome Basin. It traverses some remarkable areas cut by streams and gorges. The upper section (35 km/22 miles) is impassable when wet. The route leads to the Bull Valley Gorge and some of the steps and terraces of the Grand Staircase.

Cottonwood Canyon Road: Much of this dusty gravel road is only passable in dry weather. The 74 km (46 mile) route follows the Cocks Ridge, a large bend in the earth’s crust that bisects the Grand Staircase and Kaiparowits Plateau. The route takes in Round Valley, Cockscomb, the Cottonwood Narrows, Grosvenor Arch and Kodachrome Basin State Park.

Hole-in-the-Rock Road: Hole-in-the-Rock Road is a dusty gravel road. The cul-de-sac ends 92 km (57 miles) at Lake Powell Overlook in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Cars with good ground clearance are usually sufficient – but the last 10 km (6 miles) are rough and require a 4×4 with high ground clearance. The road follows the historical route used by Mormon settlers in 1879-1880 on their journey across the Colorado River. It leads to Devil’s Garden, the trailhead of Escalante Canyon, Dance Hall Rock and offers views of Lake Powell from Hole in the Rock lookout.

Burr Trail: The Burr Trail runs south from Boulder, Utah. The first 50 km (31 miles) between Boulder and Capitol Reef National Park are paved. The rest is a dusty gravel road with some rocky and sandy stretches. Vehicles with high ground clearance are recommended when exploring the Burr Trail. Along the route are the Slickrock Canyons and you can enjoy sweeping views. The road leads to Deer Creek, The Gulch, Long Canyon, Wolverine Petrified Wood Area and the Circle Cliffs Region.

Hiking & Trekking
There are very few established hiking trails along the Escalante River and its tributaries. However, some paths have formed over the years through more frequent use. Most tours run along the main river canyon or side canyons and require wading in the creek bed, hiking across river banks and frequent water crossings. Some side canyons require wading through depths, scrambling over rocks and the occasional swim. Other side canyons may be dry.

Lower Calf Creek Falls
Located off Highway 12 between the towns of Escalante and Boulder. The 9km (return) trail is a nature trail that leads to a shaded pool at the foot of a 38m waterfall. A moderate hike that provides a good introduction to the Escalante Canyons.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

According to timedictionary, Bryce Canyon was declared a National Park in 1928. It is named after the Mormon Bryce family, who lived here between 1875 and 1880. Bryce Canyon is located on the Paunsagunt Plateau in the south of the state of Utah, at an altitude of about 2500 m. The park is like a natural amphitheater around a horseshoe-shaped basin and is 146 km2 in size. The plateau has been eroded by water and wind and this has resulted in thousands of red, orange and yellow rock formations, interspersed with deep gorges and pillars in all shapes. These pillars are also called hoodoos. The whole area was formed between 144 and 63 million years ago.


The nearest town is Panguitch, located about 23 miles northwest of Bryce Canyon. Charter flights depart from several places, including Las Vegas, to Bryce Canyon Airport.


The climate in Bryce Canyon varies greatly. In the summer months, the temperature fluctuates around 30°C during the day: a cap and good sunscreen are no superfluous luxury. Due to the altitude, it can cool down to about 7°C at night. There are also many thunderstorms during this period. There may be snow from October to April; the average snowfall is 2.5 meters per year. The temperature is then around freezing point.

Entrance fees and opening times

The National Park is open all year round and 24 hours a day. In winter, the park may be temporarily closed due to bad weather conditions. Tickets are available at Ruby’s Inn, 1000 South Hwy 63, Bryce, Utah, among others. When you enter the park with your own vehicle, you pay $20 for a ticket that is valid for seven consecutive days. This includes all occupants. The park is also accessible by so-called shuttle from May 15 to September 30. You pay $ 15 for this, the entrance to the park is included. The shuttles depart every 15 minutes from 09:00 to 18:00. The boarding point is in front of the entrance to Ruby’s Inn.


You can spend the night in Bryce Canyon in different ways. Luxury rooms can be reserved in Bryce View Lodge. The view over the Canyon from here is, as the name says, overwhelming.

Ruby’s Inn is located a mile from the entrance to the National Park. With rooms starting at $52, this hotel also offers plenty of facilities, including an indoor pool, to relax at the end of the day.

You can camp at Sunset Campground for about $10 per night. This campsite is open from May to October and advance reservations are not necessary. Sunset Campground, Highway 63, box 17001, Bryce Canyon, UT 84717.
Food and Beverage There is a suitable restaurant for everyone in or near Bryce Canyon. Cowboy’s Buffet and Steakroom is located opposite the Bryce View Lodge. Here you can enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. For a quick bite, there is Canyon Diner, which includes pizzas, sandwiches, fish, meat, soup and salads.


Quite close together in the canyon are the viewpoints Sunrise, Sunset and Inspiration Point, which are definitely worth a visit. Further on you will find the Bryce Point and Paria View. There are several hiking and mountain biking trails in the park.
A special way to explore the canyon is on horseback. Children ages seven and up are welcome and prices range from $40 to $90. The horseback rides depart from Ruby’s Inn, reservations are required. For reservations, contact Canyon Trail Rides, PO Box 128, Tropic, UT 84776, +1 435 679 8665 or +1 435 834 5500.

For souvenirs, clothing, fruit and vegetables, you can go to Ruby’s General Store, near Ruby’s Inn.
Pets It is not recommended to bring pets to Bryce Canyon. Please note that pets must be leashed and supervised at all times.

Bryce Canyon National Park

Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City, Utah

According to CountryAAH.com, Salt Lake City is the capital and the largest city of the state of Utah (United States). In 2008 its population was 181 698 residents in the city and just over 2 million residents counting the metropolitan area that it forms together with neighboring cities.


It was founded in 1847 by a group of Mormons, a church led at that time by its creator, Brigham Young).

It is located just south-east of the Great Salt Lake.

It is the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (also known as Mormons). As the headquarters of the Mormon church, the city still preserves many buildings that were built when the Mormons arrived in this region in 1847, for example:

House of the Lion (Lion House) which was the nickname of Brigham Young (who also called himself “Young Prophet”).

The Deseret Village (Desert Village)

The Salt Lake City temple.

The Mormon church also maintains the largest family registration center in the world, with free services to the public.

Located at the foot of the Wasatch range to be a great recreation center and has one of the largest financial industries in the entire United States.

In the winter of 2002 Salt Lake City was the host city of the Olympic Games of Winter.


Before the settlement of Europeans around the 19th century, the Shoshone, Paiute, and other Native American tribes had already dwelt in the Salt Lake Valley for thousands of years.

The first known exploration was carried out by the Franciscan missionary Silvestre Vélez de Escalante and his men in 1776.

The first Mormon settlers settled in the valley on July 24, 1847.

It was built (Temple Square), in an area called the temple square located in the center of the city. It took 40 years to complete the temple, being dedicated on April 6, 1893. Today it is the best-known building in the entire city.

In 1911 the city elected for the first time a mayor who worked to improve the precarious infrastructures available to the city.

In 1929 the Great Crak hit the city hard and caused many of the 61,000 people who lived in the city at that time to lose their jobs and their homes and were forced to live on the streets.

During the Second World War, military bases were established in the city and at the end of the war the city grew rapidly, recovering a good economy.

The 20th century can be defined as a period of great economic and population growth for the city, since at the beginning of the century some 53,531 people lived in the city who had a per capita income of about $ 200 and at the end of the century lived in the city. city ​​159,936 people with a per capita income of $ 24,000, which meant tripling the population and multiplying the per capita income by 120.

During the 21st century the city continues to grow and change and the city council has arranged for a progressive renovation of the buildings in the Financial District to help improve the economy of the city.

Also in recent years, the increase in immigration is turning the city into a multicultural society in which 15% of Hispanics coexist, who are already the most important minority not only in the city but in the entire state of Utah.


According to Abbreviationfinder, Salt Lake City’s climate is defined as a semi-arid steppe climate with four distinct seasons. Summer and winter are long and spring and fall are short. Summers in the city are characterized by its hot and very dry climate.

The monsoon arrives from the Gulf of California from mid-July through September, producing several focused storms in the afternoons.

Winters are cold and with a lot of precipitation in the form of snow. Spring and fall are comfortable transition periods between winter and summer.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Study in Scarlet is described in popular culture as a dystopian colony ruled by Brigham Young’s autocracy and his armed wing, the Avengers Angels.


The population census of the year 2000 in Salt Lake City there are 180,651 people who live in 71,461 houses and that form 39,803 families.

This amounts to 8.1% of the total Utah population, 20.2% of the total Salt Lake County population, and 13.6% of the total Salt Lake metropolitan area population.

Salt Lake City has a population density of 643.3 residents per km2. The population of the metropolitan area of ​​the city amounts to more than 1,300,000 people who live in Salt Lake City and the neighboring cities of Salt Lake County.

23.6% of the city’s population is under 18, 15.2% is between 18 and 24, 33.4% is between 25 and 44, 16.7% is between 45 and 64 and a 11.0% of the city’s population is 65 years or older, which gives an average age of around 30 years. For every 102 men there are 100 women, 10.2% of the city’s population lives below the poverty line, and more than 50% of the city’s population is a member of the Mormon Church.

Salt Lake City, Utah