Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Red Rock Road Tripping: Part 1

On a recent roadtrip, we headed to Kodachrome Basin State Park with a few other families for a two-night stay. Joining us were Rachel and Jason (who suggested the location), Abigail and Adam, Amber and Jeremy, and all the kids of course.

Finally arriving at our destination after sunshine, rain, and hail

Beautiful views entering the park
We have done a lot of different trips before with this same group, but we've only ever done one other tent camping trip years ago and poor Isabelle froze in the middle of the night. With all the hassle that comes with dealing with a tent, we've stayed in cabins ever since but this time we decided that we should try tent camping again. We were the first family to arrive and we were blown away at our group campsite. It was luxurious by way of campsites and Andrew was ecstatic as he explored the place. There was plenty of room for everyone's tents and the pavilion was huge with lots of picnic tables underneath. It was secluded as well so we didn't have random people coming by and we didn't have to worry about quiet hours. We were very impressed with our stay in Kodachrome. The first night was colder than we all expected which left us all pretty sleep deprived, but the second night was a lot warmer and we were able to get a decent night's sleep before packing up. Even though the tent camping wasn't perfect, everything there was to do in Kodachrome definitely made up for it.

1. Arch Group Site 2. View from the top of the hill where Andrew originally
wanted to set up camp 3. The massive fire pit 4. Enough picnic tables for an army 

There were a lot of different hiking trails available for us to explore and we easily could have stayed a little longer to get through all the trails. Even with a handful of kids, we were able to explore a few different trails that were very family friendly. The kids loved digging in the soft sand and climbing the rocks. Having walkie talkies handy also entertained the kids through our longest hike which was roughly 6 miles.

The red Panorama Trail was the one we did first. It was misleading because the description said it could be done as a 3 mile loop or 6 mile loop. We intended on doing the 3 mile loop, but ended up doing 6 miles which left the kids pretty tired by the end of it. Luckily, they were all troopers and made it through even if it took us awhile. We saw the Ballerina Spire, Secret Passage, and the Cool Cave for sure. Most of us opted out of the Panoramic Point at the end though since the kids were pretty exhausted. Next time, we would have been more prepared with more water and snacks. Jadon did a great job as it was his first hike and Isabelle walked some of it too.

Adventures on the Panorama Trail

After some rest and snacks, we went over to Shakespeare Arch. It was only half a mile to the arch itself. The trail continued on after the arch and increased in difficulty, but we decided not to go further with the kids. Good thing too because it turns into slickrock as you climb behind the arch. The walk to the arch was easy and there was a viewpoint that had a good view of everything around us. This was definitely a fun family friend hike since the kids were able to play at the arch before heading back.

Shakespeare Arch

The last hike we did was on the Angel's Palace Trail which was 1.5 miles. We attempted to make it to the top for sunset but were just barely shy. Even though we missed it at its peak time, it was a very scenic trail with views galore. It was a bit tricky in some parts with steep bits and missing trail markers, but it was overall pretty good. The narrow landing strip to the edge held spectacular views, but the height and chance of falling would have made Andrew really freak out. Luckily, he stayed behind with Isabelle. This trail is definitely not something I would recommend to anyone with young kids just because it is a bit difficult in some parts and the sheer stress of what could happen was high for me.

Angel's Palace

Our stay in Kodachrome was short, but definitely worth the drive. We'll definitely be heading back here at some point in the future since we were only able to do half of what they had to offer and there are a lot of different other parks in the area that we weren't able to visit.
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