There are many beautiful parks in the U.S., but I am concentrating on the parks of Southern Utah in this post about parks, as I am from this area. I would like to encourage all visitors to this post to travel to the area to enjoy the scenic wonders,
ARCHES NATIONAL MONUMENT (partly from Wikapedia)
The Arches National Park is just a few short miles from Moab, Utah. It is rather a remote area but it is worth the travel to see the awe inspiring beauty of the area.
More than 2,000 natural rock sandstone arches are located in the park, including the well known Delicate Arch, as well as many unique geological formations.
The park contains the highest diversity of natural arches in the world.
Arches National Park consists of 76,679 acres of high desert, located on the Colorado Plateau.
The highest elevation is 5,653 at Elephant Butte, and the lowest elevation is 4,685 at the Visitor’s Center. It receives less than 10″ of rain annually.
Administered by the National Park Service,the area was originally named a National Monument in 1938, and was re-designated as a national park in 1976. The park received more than 1.6 million visitors in 2018.
The Arches area was first brought to the attention of the National Park Service by Frank A. Wadleigh, a Passenger Traffic Manager for the Denver and Rio Grande Western Railroad in 1923.
George L. Beam visited the area in 1923, as the guest of Alexander Ringoffer, a prospector living in the area.
Designation of the area as a National Park was supported by the National Park Service. In 1929, President Herbert Hoover signed a proclamation creating Arches National Monument.
In 1938, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a proclamation enlarging the area. Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard Nixon also signed legislation regarding the park.
Climbing on named arches in the park is banned. Recreational activities include auto touring, backpacking, biking,camping, and hiking. Some of these recreational activities require permits. Astronomy in the park is also popular..
Owachomo Bridge in Natural Bridges, Utah
NATURAL BRIDGES NATIONAL MONUMENT (partly from Wikapedia)
I visited Natural Bridges (Bridges) many years ago when my good friend Betty Holland (now deceased), was employed there. I did not visit the bridges that often during y stay, but was impressed by the cheerfulness of the crew, and by their devotion to the “Bridges”. They were all “happy campers” and did not even yearn for days off, to get out of the area, even though it was very remote area.
Natural Bridges National Monument is a U.S.National Monument located about 50 miles notrhwest of the Four Corners boundaries of southeast Utah, at the junction of White Canyon and Armstrong Canyon, part of the Colorado River drainage. It features the thirteenth largest natural bridge in the world, carved from the white Permian sandstone of the Cedar Mesa Formation. Blanding, Utah is the nearest town.
The three bridges in the area are named Kachina, Owachomo, and Sipapu, all Hopi names. There is evidence of at least two collapsed bridges within the Monument.
In 1904, the National Geographic Magazine publicized the bridges and the area was designated a National Monument. Few visitors visited the park until after the uranium boom in the 1950s, which resulted in new roads in the area. Bridge collapses and earthquakes are potential in the area.
Recreational activities include auto touring, camping, backpacking, biking and hiking.
Always bring, or wear, your hiking boots to these remote areas.
ZION NATIONAL PARK
I have visited Z ion’s National Park many times. I used dto have a friend there ,Michael Fatali. Michael is a renowned photographer and he had a gallery in Springdale, Utah, the town which is the closest to Zion National Park. While visiting Zion, I would stay in Michael’s “Rock House”.
Zion National Park is truly beautiful and magnificent, and a great place for hiking.
The following is partly from Wikipedia
Zion National Park is an American National Park, near the town of Springdale, Utah. A prominent feature of the 229 square mile par is Zion Canyon. Zion canyon walls are reddish and tan Navajo sandstone, eroded by the North Fork of the Virgin River. The lowest point in the park is at Coalpits Wash, and the highest peak is at Horse Ranch Mountain (8726 ft.) The park has a variety of of life zones that allow unusual plant and animal life. Numerous plant species as well as 289 species of birds, 75 mammals, (including 17 of bat) and 39 reptiles inhabit the park’s four life zones, desert, woodland, riparian and coniferous forest.
Zion National Park includes mountains, canyons, buttes, mesas, monoliths, rivers, slot canyons and natural arches.
Human habitation of the area started about 8,000 years ago with snall groups of Native Americans, one of which was the semi-nomadic Basketmaker Anasazi. Mormons came into the area in 1858 and settled there On November 20, 1919, Congress redesignated the monument to Zion National Park, and the Act was signed by President Woodrow Wilson.
The park is located in Washington, Iron and Kane counties, in Southwestern Utah. Streams in the area take rectangular Zion National paths because they follow jointing planes in the rocks. The climate consists of hot summers and cold winters with a limited amount of precipitation throughout the year.
Zion National Park is a magnificent park to visit, especially if you are a hiker, so don’t forget your hiking boots.
BRYCE CANYON NATIONAL PARK
Bryce Canyon National Park is an American National Park located in Southwestern Utah. Its major feature is Bruce Canyon, which, despite its name, is not a canyon, but a collection of giant natural ampitheaters along the eastern side of the Paunsaugunt Plateau.
Bryce is distinctive due to geological structures called hoodoos, formed by frost weathering and stream erosion of the river and lake bed sedimentary rocks. The red, orange and white colors of the rocks provide spectacular views for park visitors.
Bryce Canyon was settled by Mormon pioneers in the 1850’s, and was named after Ebenezer Bryce, who homesteaded the area in 1879. President Warren G. Harding designated it as a national monument in 1923, and it was redesignated a national park by Congress in 1928
The park encompassed 35,835 acres. The location is rather remote, but visitors numbers are increasing.
Bryce Canyon National Park lies within the Colorado Plateau province of North America and straddles the southeastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. It is known as a canyon beause it was not formed by erosion from central stream. stream.
Th hoodoos in Bryce are similar to those found in CEDAR BREAKS NATIONAL MONUMENT, which is 25 miles to the west.
Mormon scouts visited the area in the 1850’s,to gauge its potential for agricultural development and settlement. Army Major John Wesley Powell surveyed the area in 1872.
Ebenezer Bryce, who was sent by the Mormon Church to homestead the area, reputedly thought the ampitheaters were “a helluva place to lose a cow.”
A combination of drought, overgrazing and flooding drove the Paiutes from the area. Bryce moved his family to Arizona in 1880.
170 species of birds visit the park each year. The mule deer, cougars and coyotes migrate to lower elevations each year.
Numerour hiking grails are provided in the park. The park includes two campgrouinds, North Campground and Sunset Campground. Bryce Canyon Lodge is also available.
Bryce Canyon, along with Arches, Zions amd Bridges are all excellent places to hike, so put on your hiking boots,and LETS GO HIKING !!!!!!