Sunday, September 14, 2014

Hint of Fall, Cedar Breaks, Kolob Canyon


On our way to Cedar Breaks National Monument, we ran into a hint of fall…as the Aspens up in the 9,000-10,000 foot level were as gold as could be, and some were even that red-orange color.

1b     1c

It really was a pleasant surprise…did not expect that at all.


The scenery up at this level was spectacular.  Lots of meadows, combinations of Aspens and Evergreens, and what a view.


Before we get to the Visitor’s Center, we come upon this overlook that they call Sunset View. Cedar Breaks looks like a smaller version of Bryce, and you know what the best thing about it is?


No Crowds...….few people…as you can see here at the the overlook at the Visitor’s Center, and it's Saturday!  .

3a    3b

The overlook at the Visitor’s Center is called “Point Supreme”.  It is a real nice overlook in which you can scan from the left  (two pictures above) to the right (two pictures below).

3c    3d

I could not get the pictures to blend together because of the curves in the mountain that the hoodoos are on.  So you will have to use your imagination.


And when we talk “Visitor’s Center”, we are talking a small building.  This seems to be typical of National Monuments that I have seen….”IF” they even have a visitor’s center. 

4a    4b
4c    4d

There are a variety of shapes and sizes and colors…like we said with Bryce, you can sit there and stare for hours.…but we did not have hours…we had a trip to Northern Zion to visit Kolob Canyon, plus grocery shopping.


As we head to Cedar City, I see this in my rear view mirror….and pull over.  That is looking up at a portion of Cedar Breaks while traveling down highway 14 west towards Cedar City.  


After getting gas in Cedar City, we take the 20 minute drive south toward St. George, get off the Interstate at exit 40.  While I am thinking about it….did you know the speed limit around here on the Interstate is 80 miles per hour?  No wonder everyone was shooting past me as I drove 65, which to me was plenty fast since we normally don’t go over 60 in the motorhome.  Anyway, it is a very short drive, less than a mile, once you get off the Interstate before you get to the Visitor’s Center where you pay, or show our pass.  After I ran in to show our pass, we proceeded up the five mile drive of Kolob Canyon.  About a mile into it, we see that something special awaits us.  The one time I visited Kolob Canyon, the snow did not allow me to go very far…this looked familiar to me.

6b    6c

We come to the first pull out where we can see the mountains.  We travel on…


With the progression down the road, with every twist and turn, these mountains change due to the shadows and the depth perception.


At the end of he five mile trek there is this circle parking lot, and a couple of “non-flush” toilets which Marcia said were clean and odor free.  And as you can see, the parking lot is pretty empty.  Note the color of the pavement....the entire road is a reddish color.


And that is the panoramic view.  At the end of the line there is a plaque which provides the name of each peak and area of the mountains in this view.  The mountains have a deep redness to them, much more than the camera captured.


The distance from the road and the mountains is just perfect…you are able to take in the fullness of it, and close enough to see the details.  It is interesting to note that the mountains of interest are pretty much all on the north side of the road, the south side is full of vegetation, and little exposed rock.


There are a couple of hikes in this portion of the park, most notably is the “Kolob Arch” hike, which to be clear WE DID NOT DO, COULD NOT DO.  I took this picture of it off the Internet.  It is a 14 mile round trip hike, but what you will find is few people, and lots of scenery.  The thing about Kolob Canyon is that it really is just off the Interstate.  If you are driving in the area between Salt Lake and Vegas, you can swing off the Interstate, see the canyon in short order, and be back to your trip.


Our time in this part of South-western Utah is coming to a close.  Tomorrow is a day of rest and laundry and preparation to leave on Monday.  I saw two new areas, Marcia saw four, and we have had a great time.  Next we head up to highway 12 and by Friday we will be in Park City area to see my daughter Stephanie.  After that, we visit the eastern side of Southern Utah before we head into Colorado.


  1. Thanks for all the Cedar Break photos!! I didn't realize that it was a little Bryce Canyon. Isn't it fun to find a place without crowds!

    We really enjoyed Kolob Canyon but never did get to the end of the road...deep snow!

    1. Glad you found that posting, it does not seem to show up in other blog rolls, but it did show up in my RSS feed...don't know what is up with that. We could have gone to at least one more pullout, but we would have had to back track, decided not to. And Kolob Canyon is wonderful! You need to get back some day when there is no snow if you can....September or October would probably be fine, maybe early November.

  2. Thanks for the link to this post I missed. Cedar Breaks was one of our favorite spots. We stayed a few days at the great campground and it was wonderful being in such fabulous scenery with so few people. Shhhhh - don't let anyone know.

    1. You are so right...the National Monuments get so fewer people than the National Parks do.


We love to hear comments from our readers. All comments are moderated by Dave before added to the website. Spam, advertisers and rude comments are deleted, and due to high spam attempts, Anonymous Users cannot post, sorry....register for a Google ID, it is free and it is easy. Go to: Get Google ID