Kodachrome, Give Us the Greens of Summers: Utah Day 3

Dear Maia, Isaac, and Virtual Wonderers,

We woke up surrounded by red goblins! What to do but take another hike before we leave on one of the most beautiful scenic drives in Utah . . . or anywhere. Oh, and it’s my mom’s 105th BD this day, so I decided the lizard crawling on our duffle bag was her spirit animal making a connection. ūüôā Utah Highway 24 to Utah Highway 12 to Kodachrome Basin. This drive takes you through Capitol Reef National Park and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. It is epic.

Sunrise over the San Rafel Swell
Mom’s birthday spirit animal
Goblin Valley State Park

There was construction at Capitol Reef, so I was a little disappointed when we had to follow a pilot car most of the way through. I have planned to stop for more pictures. I managed to get a couple before we were on toward Torrey and our turn onto Utah 12.

Capitol Reef National Park, Utah
Capitol Reef and Utah Highway 24
Capitol Reef near the west entrance
My goofy dogs, Moki and Kachina, share a booster during the drive through Capitol Reef National Park

It is a big climb up the pass – and from the summit, you can see the Grand Staircase. The staircase is different rock layers that are visible due to their color. It is an amazing site and something for a bucket list.

Extra ordinary view of the Grand Staircase near Boulder, Utah
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument view from Utah Highway 12

Not much further down the road, the drive takes you through Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. My photos don’t do in justice. It is like driving through a sea of stone with waves crashing all around. It was pretty “white knuckle” my first time through. Fortunately or unfortunately, we assimilate. But, it is still stunning.

Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument from Utah Highway 12

I remember feeling fatigued and my eyes were burning by the last leg of our journey into Kodachrome Basin, which is pretty rural and off the main road a bit. We had dodged the monsoons all day and it looked like we would get rain that evening at camp, but I don’t remember getting much if any. However, the sky was threatening enough that we just chilled at our site that evening. Moki dug a huge hole while I was pitching the tent that I had to fix. Sigh. Let’s get some rest before tomorrow.

Sazi guards the hole that Moki dug under our picnic table.
Monsoon clouds at Kodachrome State Park, Utah
Utah Highway 24 to Utah Highway 12 to Kodachrome Basin State Park

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