Canyonlands is the fifth Utah park we visited in our Mighty Five National Park series. (High five, we did it). This enormous landscape of sedimentary sandstone is divided into four areas by two mighty rivers, the Colorado and the Green. We are all aware of the other Canyon formed by the Colorado River a little further south. We concentrated our hikes and overlook views to The Islands in the Sky area. The Maze, The Needles and the Rivers themselves we will save for another visit. Once again, I have learned many fun facts and pro tips about rock formations. For example, did you know the black drippy lines on many of the cliffs is the mineral black manganese which seeped from the sandstone, dripped like paint and is nicknamed desert varnish?
The Island in the Sky mesa sits atop sheer sandstone cliffs. Every overlook offers a different incredible view. Island in the Sky offers many intense hiking trails, however we choose the easier trails. This included Mesa Arch which is perched on the very edge of a cliff overlooking a canyon. It frames the La Sal mountains over 100 miles away.The canyons, carved by the rivers, along with collapased salt domes and other geological rock formations, keep your head spinning to take in all the beauty and splendor. Although both Canyonlands and Arches offer copious amounts of trails and vistas, the surrounding community is also filled with trails and adventures.
We stayed in Moab, Utah which is located close to both Arches and Canyonlands. It has many restaurants, gift shops and tourist information.We chose the Desert Hills Bed and Breakfast a little south of the town center. It was wonderful. Red Rock views from our bedroom and outstanding breakfasts with eggs from their chickens, fruit and veggies from their garden and homemade bread and jams.We could have easily stayed for weeks and continued to explore and enjoy the area.