What’s the most beautiful place you’ve ever met?
When you shook its hand, did you notice the grip? How strong it was?
I met a place in Utah, deep in red rock country, that still hasn’t let go of its firm hold, nor do I think it ever will.
Not far past the Utah/Colorado state line lives the city of Moab, but you might as well just call it Mars. Home to land that I can’t even begin to explain, you’ll need to take a visit at least once in your lifetime to see for yourself. Whether it be Arches, Dead Horse Point, or Canyonlands… any of them will give new life to the phrase, “a whole other world…”
A suggestion from a friend made Canyonlands National Park our next stop after Colorado. Always hard to leave, we didn’t hit the road until noon, and it’s about a six hour drive from Boulder. Timing on road trips can be tricky, and you need at least a little light to see the end of the tunnel. I was a little nervous… if anything slowed us down, night would have beat us.
We got to the entrance of the park just at six. The sun was already dipping behind the large peaks, and we had at least another 30 minutes to go to get to the heart of it.
But the timing couldn’t have been more perfect. Magic hour is one thing, but Canyonlands at magic hour? Hands down, by far, the most beautiful sight I’ve yet to witness.
Distant snow caps turned pink, red cliffs caught fire, the sky a pool of pigment… I’m trying to re-live it as I do my best to paint the picture for you all, but it’s hard to compare memories to the real thing.
There’s a sign at the Grand Canyon in Arizona that suggests to it’s visitors to just stop and see. It tells them to put down the cameras, cut off the conversation, and to simply just look.
…Just before it turned to dark, I hopped out of the car and ran over to some rocks beyond the road, climbing over a couple to get to the nearest edge. We saw all of two other cars in the park, both on their way out as we made our way in, so not a soul was in sight. I looked over the ledge, and down into canyons that went on for miles. I saw colors I never thought could exist as part of the Earth, and the silence… the silence was the best part. So quiet and still, it was like time had frozen. No picture or video will ever be able to translate the feeling of what it was like to see nature in it’s purest form. I had to put my camera down for a little, because some things are solely meant to be looked at naturally, and not from behind a lens…
That sign at the Grand Canyon is right, but not just for wonders of the world. In life, in love… sometimes you need to set aside the distractions to be able to see things as they truly are. Look, listen, and appreciate. There’s magic that exists in everything.
+Ever been to Canyonlands/Moab? Let me know about your experience in the comments!
Check out more notes from the road!