After having a nice morning at camp we went hiking in the Devil’s Garden area. If you missed part 1 of our trip you can catch up here. Hiking is a very loosely used here but fun nonetheless. Rob’s dad gave emergency whistles to each of the kids right at the start of this hike. Shockingly, the kids used them happily despite his warnings to use them only for emergencies (go figure).
Pinetree Arch. I’m resting in the shade looking up at the monolith hanging above me. This arch is massive.
Rob was surprised how much he latched on to Landscape Arch. It was not an arch he was terribly interested in before starting the hike. When he saw it he was blown away. In contrast to many of the arches around the park which are fairly thick and bulky, Landscape Arch is something else. So slender and delicate. Such a marvel.
By the time we got on the way to Landscape Arch the heat was really starting to kick in.
The kids were very hot and it seemed like Cara was even worse. I’ve heard that young kids do not do as well sweating to reduce their temperature. In any case she seemed pretty toasty and we focused a lot of attention on her to make sure she was safe.
Rob carried her on his shoulders most of the way there and back. We kept her drinking fluids regularly and kept the misters going on her pretty constantly.
As a father Rob loved carrying Cara around on this hike. He felt that papa bear instinct I suppose. She is his little girl and darn it he was going to carry her on his shoulders and make sure she is OK. She was happy and so was Rob.
Next stop, rafting down the Colorado River! Sometimes there can be some challenges to selecting activities that will work for three entire families. We chose to raft down the Colorado River in the very mild section just before Moab. We put in at the Big Bend area and enjoyed a very mild float down the river. It was a lot of fun and I think all the kids enjoyed it. We adults would rather have experienced some rapids but we still enjoyed being on the river for the hot part of the afternoon. It was fantastic!
We had two rafts between the 11 of us. We switched up the rowers and the kids between the boats several times. Sometimes we did the switching on the shore and sometimes switched while on the river. Those switches were the most exciting.
Most of all it was super fun to go very slowly through the gorgeous terrain and scenery while enjoying the company of family. It was truly a beautiful area.
Most of the adults and all but the youngest kids took turns floating down the river outside the boats. I think that was a fun change for the adults and exciting for the kids. We ended up starting our float a little late and the folks at the rental shop didn’t think we’d make it back in time. Boy did we show them! We made it back with about 15 minutes to spare. That was some sweet paddling.
The next morning we stopped at Delicate Arch. We didn’t have time to do the big hike up to it so some of us did the shorter hike to the viewpoint. So I (Rob) look completely fat here due to all the horrible food I was eating on a project in Central Utah both before and after the trip. Oy. Anyway, I love to hike, I love it, and to go a little farther than the rest of the group and my oldest kiddo was very cool. Nate and I both had our cameras and got some nice, albeit distant, pictures together with Delicate Arch. What a marvel!
While taking photos of the arch Nate asked *if this was the most famous arch in the world* and I told him that yes indeed. He was so excited about this and was amped up to tell his friends about it. I was happy to have been with him to experience the most famous arch in the world.
Our last walk was to Sand Dune Arch. This was a really fun place for the kids to play in the sand. In the heat of the afternoon this area provides ample shade. We had a blast climbing around on the rocks, playing in the sand, and relaxing. There are very few arches that allow hiking up onto the arch. The boys took the opportunity to figure out the way up. It was just challenging enough for the older boys to feel triumphant for making it up there. Can’t recommend this hike more for kids in the hot afternoon.
We only had time to drive through the Windows section of the park but it looked pretty awesome. We’ll spend more time there next time we go.