A Weekend in Moab / by Gleb Lapham

It's the beginning of March, which means it's time for spring break. This is the time when a lot of college students decide to go take a trip somewhere. Some go somewhere nice and warm, some go where it's still a little chilly, well my friends and I chose a happy medium. We decided to pack up and head to one of the most unique places in the world; Moab, Utah.

My friend Dallas and I set off to Moab around noon on Friday, after stopping for some delicious BBQ in Salt Lake we continued onward. After about four hours of driving we made it to our hotel. Once we unpacked and settled we went and joined our friend Robert and a couple of his buddies, Kyle and DeAnna, who where camping out not too far from town. We all hung out, enjoyed some spicy Italian sausage, and kept warm around the campfire, the next day is when the adventures truly begun. 

On Saturday morning Robert swung by the hotel in his ready to rock FJ Cruiser and picked up me and Dallas. Then we set off to our first adventure of the day, the Gemini Bridges trail, we took the hard way up. Robert was very excited to put his FJ to the test!

 Photo Credit: Kyle Fred. Robert, Dallas, and I near the Gemini Bridges.

Photo Credit: Kyle Fred. Robert, Dallas, and I near the Gemini Bridges.

Robert and his FJ.

It was bumpy yet fun ride up to the top. Once we were there we were greeted to a spectacular view of the valleys and canyons of sandstone. There was also a big hole in the ground right next to the Gemini Bridges themselves. This was my first time being in this part of Moab, and I must say it was breathtaking. From the main parking area you can walk right up to the edge of a searing sandstone cliff, be careful though the rocks can be slippery. Also, if you don't have a big burly off-road truck, you can still get there using another way up. 

After we had our fill of the bridges and the landscape bellow, it was time to head back down, grab some food, and head to our second adventure of that day; the hike to Delicate Arch. 

By the time we made it into Arches National Park it was already a later part of the day. On the way to the Delicate Arch hike we made a couple of quick pit stops to admire some of the park other natural features.

The Delicate Arch trail starts off pretty easy but then can quickly become strenuous. After the initial part you're looking a pretty steep climb up some very smooth sandstone, so be sure that you're wearing good shoes. After you get passed the sandstone, the trail becomes rather easy and you're looking at a pretty flat walk the rest of the way. Be careful during the final stretch though because you'll be walking on a pretty narrow trail with a rock wall on one side and a cliff on the other. Take your time and give room to the people coming down. 

The hike up to the Arch only took us about 45 - 60 minutes. Even though by the time we got to the Arch the sun was already bellow the horizon, we were still treated to the beautiful orange glow of the dessert sky. 

Dallas found himself a resting place.

At the Arch we rested took a whole lot of pictures, talked, joked, and Dallas started falling asleep on a rock. After spending an hour or so at the Arch, it was time to head back. By that time the sun was well bellow the horizon and night has already take over. Armed with a flashlight and a couple of smartphones we slowly, but surely made our way down while signing some tunes along the way. Once we got back to the trail head, we headed back to town for a good nights rest, because the next day was going to be pretty busy. Or...so we thought. 

The next day was a Sunday, and this was the day when we all originally planned to head to a place called Top of The World and camp up there. The way up is steep and rocky so Robert was going to drive us all up on his FJ. That was the original plan, but unfortunately the weather turned sour on us. It was windy, and there was a chance of rain. We didn't feel like getting stranded on Top of The World so we had to come up with something else to do. 

Luckily Moab, despite it being a small town, has a lot to offer. We all met up and headed to the Moab Brewery to grab some lunch and try out some local beer. After the brewery we decided head to Castle Creek Winery, near Red Cliffe Lodge and try out some local wine. The winery was in a beautiful location, nestled on the shores of the Colorado River and surround by cliffs of Red Rock. Now I'm not a wine connoisseur but I did enjoy what I tried. I ended up buying a bottle of Merlot to take home for my dad.

The view from the winery.

After our visit to the winery, we decided to see how my own car, an '08 Jeep Liberty would fare on a lighter trail, the Willow Springs Road, which is also the back way into Arches National Park. Well my car fared pretty well until we came upon some steep and smooth rock, at which point I decided that it wasn't worth the risk of breaking down. We turned around and decided to head back into Arches the normal way. Dallas and I said our goodbyes to Robert and wished him a safe journey home. Because we were unable to head up to the Top of The World, Robert decided that he was going to head home a day early. 

After following Robert our of Willow Springs Road and back to the highway, Dallas and I turned in the opposite direction and headed back to town. Just short of reaching the town we turned off and headed up back up to Arches National Park, through the main gate. We decided to check out some of the sights that we weren't able to get to the day before. Arches can easily consume your entire day, so its best to plan accordingly. Dallas and I stopped at the Balancing Rock and at The Windows and took some pictures of the landscape that was bathed in the setting sun. We wanted to spend more time out there, looking at the arches, but once the sun set, the strong winds got even stronger, so we decided to call it good and head back to the hotel and get a good nights rest before our drive back home in the morning. 

The next day we woke up to a brisk 43 degrees in Moab. Which was freezing in comparison to the previous day mid 60's temperatures. We ate some breakfast at a local diner and set off on our journey back home. 

Despite our change of plans it was still and awesome weekend. All of us there saw some beautiful locations, we hung out with some great people, and had a great time. 

Moab is one of those places that keep on drawing you back, and back again, always tempting you with more and more adventures, so we will definitely be back. 

Also on this trip I filmed my first attempts at a vlog which I will try and get put on my YouTube channel within the next couple of weeks. So stay tuned for that. 

As always thank you for reading, I am always happy to share my adventures with you! If you liked what you read go ahead and subscribe so you don't miss the next post. Until next time! Peace!

Special thanks to my friends Dallas Ware and Robert Hargis for being patient and helping me out with the video!