I am absolutely loving being in Bulgaria and I’m settling in more and more every day. However, I’ve come down with a mild case of the homesickies recently. In an attempt to keep the blues away, I recently wrote letters to some peeps back home, and I’ve also been reminiscing about my beautiful home state, Utah. You’d think this would make me more homesick, but it actually helps in some weird way!
If you’ve never been to Utah, you haven’t lived. Ok, Ok, maybe that’s a bit of an overstatement, but in all honesty, Utah truly is one of the most gorgeous places on earth. Chances are, if you’ve ever seen a movie and marveled at the stunning desert vistas, that was filmed in Utah. Just Google “movies filmed in Utah,” and you’ll see the never-ending list of huge blockbuster movies with Utah as a backdrop. On that note, pretty much any calendar with scenic landscape shots has a few in there of Utah’s incredible National Parks (of which there are 5). It’s just fact. 🙂
Can you tell how proud I am to call myself a Utahn? Sure, the Beehive State has some things (and people) that don’t jive so well with me, but overall I am happy to have grown up there and to have had many opportunities to explore places that some people just get to dream about.
Case in point: a Spring Break trip with two great friends to, in Moab, Utah.
I’ve been to Arches a few times and it never ceases to give me goose bumps. It is utterly amazing. By day, the park comes alive with colors I’ve never had the pleasure of seeing anywhere else in my travels, rock formations that boggle the mind, and vistas that seem to stretch to the ends of the earth. By night, the temperatures drop and an impossible number of stars twinkle in the crisp, clear night sky.
On this particular trip, I enjoyed said stars laying on a blanket in the sand with a bottle of wine (to myself) and nothing but my thoughts to keep me company–that is until my friends cut me off and made me go to bed (I wax a tad philosophical when I have too much to drink). They are just rude like that! 😉
We camped, we hiked, we clung to ledges for our dear lives–it was a fantastic trip.
I cannot wait to take my hiking-obsessed husband on a road trip across the state, showing him all of Utah’s natural wonders.
You simply have to see it to believe it!
One of the more famous formations in the park is Balanced Rock. It seems like a light wind would known such a precarious balancing act right over, but it’ still standing strong!
Landscape Arch sits in the park’s Devil’s Garden area and is considered to be the 2nd longest natural arch in the world with a span of about 290 ft. I know it’s a bad angle in the photo, but can you see that thin area of the arch? Well, it used to be thicker but in the early 90’s some slabs broke off. The park service was forced to close the trail runs underneath the arch. Thankfully, Landscape Arch remains intact, Wall Arch was not so lucky.
Good ole Delicate Arch. The most famous site in the park and one of the most recognizable natural landmarks in not just Utah, but the world. Utah’s license plates even featured it for years. I like to refer to the hike up to it as “the hike of death,” but really I am just not the most in-shape person in the world. There is absolutely nothing like rounding the corner at the end of the nearly 3-mile straight uphill hike to see this beauty. I’ve been up there about 4 times and it leaves me breathless (and not from the hike!) each and every time. On one visit I even saw a man propose to his girlfriend right under it. So sweet! I’ll admit, however, I am not a huge fan of heights and walking over to the actual arch is nerve wracking. It sits right on the edge of an enormous cliff. Makes me shiver just thinking about it!
And I don’t know the name of this last one, but I think I know what I would name it!
(He he he!)
If you ever have the chance to visit Utah (especially southern Utah), I would jump at it. Remember to bring your camera and lots of memory cards, you are going to need ’em!