5 Days/4 Nights
Mar – Oct
Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City
March through the end of October is the perfect chance to explore Utah’s world renowned landscapes while resting at the day’s end in rustic luxury accommodations. Experience what southern Utah is all about as we travel through “Canyon Country” and work our way up the Colorado Plateau to some of the most incredible sights in the American Southwest. One iconic site after another, this tour will provide an unforgettable experience to see all 5 of Utah’s National Parks including Zion, Bryce Canyon, Arches, Canyonlands and Capitol Reef.
Today, we’ll depart from Salt Lake City and drive through the beautiful Wasatch mountains en route to the incredible canyons of southern Utah. First up for the five National Parks is Canyonlands, known for being rough, rugged, and desolate…but with much beauty to behold! We will explore the district called Island In The Sky where we’ll hike to some outstanding viewpoints and see an iconic natural arch.
Additionally, we will stop at Dead Horse Point State Park for one of the most awe-inspiring views of the mighty Colorado River. This amazing place has been featured in many movies and television shows ranging from “Thelma & Louise” to HBO’s recent series “Westworld”.
This evening we’ll arrive to our rustic lodge and have a nice dinner.
Driving time: 4 Hours
Hiking: 3+ miles – Minimal elevation gain
Wake up to breakfast included at your lodge and get ready to explore one of the greatest collections of natural arches on the planet at Arches National Park! We will depart early to view the Windows, Double Arch, and hike 3-miles round-trip to one of the most famous features in the entire southwest, Delicate Arch.
“A weird, lovely, fantastic object out of nature like Delicate Arch has the curious ability to remind us—like rock and sunlight and wind and wilderness—that out there is a different world, older and greater and deeper by far than ours” – Edward Abbey, Desert Solitaire
After some additional active options in Arches National Park, we make a trip to their visitor center before returning to Moab for a couple hours of down time at our campsite. Depending on group preference, some additional options this afternoon may include a visit to Castle Creek Winery and/or a visit to Castle Valley just outside of Moab. This evening, you will be dropped off in the town of Moab for an opportunity to shop and dine on your own. We’ll then pick you up and take back to your rustic lodge and allow you to relax for the rest of the night.
Departing from Moab, we drive 2 hours to our first adventure for the day at Goblin Valley State Park. This place is out of this world! It is hard to envision a more “alien-like” landscape than what you’ll see here. Small hoodoos, locally known as goblins, fill a former tidal plain and make for one of the most unique destinations in the American Southwest.
After Goblin Valley, we’ll enjoy one of America’s most scenic drives as we explore Capital Reef National Park for a possible hike to view a famous Natural Bridge. Capitol Reef National Park includes 241,904 acres of amazing red rock formations, cliffs, canyons and natural bridges. It is Utah’s wilderness at its best. Capitol Reef is also the least visited of Utah’s National Parks, so it’s definitely worth checking out! This evening we’ll arrive to our rustic lodge near Bryce Canyon National Park.
This morning we will enter Bryce Canyon National Park just in time to capture the sun rising over a collection of sandstone spires called “hoodoos”. Explore several viewpoints before we descend into the Bryce Amphitheatre on “The world’s best 3-mile hike”. This trail is rated as moderate and is a wonderful way to view a variety of geology, flora, & fauna.
Later in the day we’ll head to our lodge just outside of Zion National Park! You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the property before we have an incredible dinner.
Driving time: 2 Hours
Hiking: 3-4 miles – 600+ feet elevation gain
Accommodation: Lodging at Majestic View Lodge or similar
Today we explore our 5th National Park in 5 days at Zion National Park! Marvel at the giant red cliffs that rise over 2,000 feet above the blue-green waters of the Virgin River. We’ll spend the day exploring much of what this park has to offer before making our return trip to Salt Lake City.
*Due to many natural variables in the outdoors, we take what mother nature provides for us when deciding on which hike we will do. Depending on the weather options include: Upper Emerald Pools, Observation Point, The Narrows or similar.
After several hours of optional hiking and exploring, we depart from Zion National Park and begin our return 4.5-hour drive to Salt Lake City.
Driving time: 5 Hours
Hiking: 3-6 miles – minimal elevation gain
Return to Salt Lake City: We plan to return to SLC by approximately 7:00pm. If you plan to depart from Salt Lake International Airport after the trip, be sure you do not book a flight prior to 10:00pm or 22:00 due to various circumstances out of our control.
Check out a more in-depth list of what to bring here.
I took my very first solo trip from NJ to Utah with Mountainbased in April and I still think about it everyday, looking at my photos and wish I could... read more go back! Justin & Jared are AMAZING, incredibly knowledgeable and so fun to be around!...More
I did the 5 day "Southern Utah" trip covering Bryce, Zion and Grand Escalantes with 2 of my friends in a group of 12 people. The trip organization was amazing... read more with great camping locations, georgeous hikes, yummy food and perfectly planned itinerary. Nick 1 and Nick 2 were knowledgeable and friendly guides and went to great lengths to make our trip most enjoyable and kept the whole group engaged with their efforts and planning. Our fellow campers were also hugely cooperative and great folks to be around. I had a blast during the trip. Will be looking forward to do the Yellowstone a d Teton soon with MoutainBased.
Justin and Jared, our guides, did a wonderful job in coordinating all the logistics in visiting the 5-National Parks in Utah. Besides visiting the national parks, we also visited several... read more State Parks. My favorite was Goblin State Park. Would preferred to have bypassed the other...More
I can’t say enough great things about this experience! This amazing hiking/camping trip through Bryce and Zion was led by brothers Jared & James and boy, do they have... read more it all well organized and exceptionally executed. They are both so nice and easy going, yet so knowledgeable about the parks, hikes and surroundings that you have an amazing experience in every way. Great camping sites and they take care of everything!
I’m a recreational hiker (at best) and not a camper but wanted to go with a group to experience these beautiful locations. I didn’t want a “drive by” park experience where you are just on and off a bus. We spent significant time on the best hikes in both parks so you really get a true sense of the diverse beauty they each have. This trip surpassed my expectations and the best part was I didn’t have to plan anything! MountainBased did it all and well enough to please me, a very particular person. Thanks guys for an amazing trip! Highly recommend to anyone looking for a great way to see the beauty of America’s national parks. More
I did the Southern Utah Hiker trip with MountainBased from Sep 2-6, 2019 and I cannot say enough good words about my overall experience. My guides for this trip were... read more Nick and Nick and they run the whole 5 day trip with the most effortless professionalism and expertise I have seen. Very friendly. Engage the whole group. Prepared the most awesome food. Drive us to every site in their van with enough breaks for snacks and refreshments. Time the hikes to perfection depending on weather and sun. This was my first time hiking, camping and in Utah and I cannot possible imagine having a better introduction to hiking that this trip with MountainBased. The whole trip has just been one high after the other. I highly recommend doing a trip with MountainBased and look forward to doing another one myself. More
Highly recommend for families and friends. Guides are caring, professional and as excited as you to see natures beauty. Moderate hikes through iconic parks, high-quality food prepared on-site,... read more & excellent equipment. Great family memories that will last a lifetime. Disney World - your days are...More
I have done over 100 tours and this was one of the best I've ever done! Everything was incredibly organized and professional. The guides made the trip (Eric and Jared).... read more They are super knowledgeable, experienced, friendly, and not to mention amazing photographers. I usually travel...More