Why go to the Southwest USA?

Regular blog readers will recall my recent adventures with hubby* around Arizona and Utah.  I posted most days, using pretty average photos taken on my phone.

My hubby is an incredibly talented photographer who has finally curated down to his preferred 20 or so pictures from our trip.  His photos are so much better than mine that they deserve their own post.   For those of you who are on the fence about visiting, let’s see if these photos can persuade you.

Thanks to hubby for sharing!

bryce canyon

0u0a5615 0u0a5605 0u0a5466 0u0a5562


0u0a5854 0u0a5750 0u0a5974 0u0a5987 0u0a6067 0u0a6001 0u0a6087-2


0u0a6433 0u0a6462 0u0a6482 0u0a6519 0u0a6580



0u0a6713 0u0a6729

arches national park


Delicate Arch at Arches National Park
Delicate Arch at Arches National Park

* note hubby does have a name.  However  he is extremely anti social media and anything remotely resembling attention.   So I have agreed to only ever refer to him on this blog as hubby to keep him firmly under the radar.

In the White Pocket

We are still in the under-rated Vermilion cliffs national park – a fantastically surreal landscape of reds and pinks and whites – which most people drive past without exploring on their way from the Grand Canyon to Zion or Bryce.  Today we headed out on the rough 4wd road to White Pocket, a stunning area for which no permit is required (yet!)

hiking across the rocks

Apparently no one knows how this pocket of landscape was formed – swirls of red and white, bizarre ‘brain like’ rock surfaces, odd shaped cliffs, yellow ‘oyster’ formations and the odd ‘pocket’ of water. 
hubby taking a lunchtime nap at the oyster

We spent a good four hours wandering around and could have happily spent longer – the light in the evening and at sunrise would have been spectacular 

the brains
We hired a photography guide with a 4wd to take us there as we didn’t have the right car and the maps aren’t helpful at identifying the best places to go.  It was expensive but worth it for us as we didn’t have a 4wd and the  guide was good.  We booked through grand circle tours who were pretty disorganised so I would advise going direct to Gary at yrag@kanab.net who is a fine art photographer and guide

If we were doing it again, I would take a 4wd and a tent and stay overnight to take advantage of the evening and morning light.  There is no water and no facilities, but ‘no trace’ camping is allowed

chilling in the ‘oyster’

Two amusing notes on Utah

– without fail, anyone you meet who isn’t a Mormon will let you know that within 30 minutes. Some people let us know they were not of the ‘predominant faith’ before they told us their names!   If someone hasn’t told you they aren’t Mormon and you are in Utah, assume they are

– liquor licensing laws here are quite amusing.  You will find booze easily in places that serve food, but lots of places, including taverns and grocery stores, are only allowed to sell relatively low alcohol ‘near-beer’.  

Visited September 2016

stripey rocks