-Park City, UT (where husband face grew up)
-Moab, UT (one night of camping on the Colorado River and a trip to Arches National Park)
-Durango, CO (quick stopover to checkout the town and breweries)
-Santa Fe, NM (where my parents live)
I forgot how much fun road trips could be. We both wished that we had more time and money so we could just keep wandering. Regardless we had a great time on the 4th of July in Utah and hiking and mountain biking in Santa Fe. An added plus being my pops works at REI and I got new hiking shoes and camping chairs thanks to his discount. I took a boatload of photos, here are my favorites (minus Arches national park which will be a separate post).
The night after we got to Park City we went camping at Smith & Morehouse, a beautiful campground above the Smith & Morehouse reservoir in the Uinta Mountains. We got this great little spot along the stream which was nice because it was HOT.
|Campsite at Smith & Morehouse|
|Camp chillaxing, Smith & Morehouse|
|Smoke from a fire over the hill from Park City|
I haven't been to a small town parade since I was a little girl growing up in the boonies of central New York. The 4th of July parade in Park City was a much bigger to do than the tiny ones in my hometown but it still brought back a lot of memories.
|The start of the 4th of July parade, Main St. Park City|
|My new bestie, Miss Savannah|
|Now that's a motorcycle|
After the parade everybody goes down to the park in Park City for live music and to drink themselves silly. In that mayhem I got to meet some of husband face's oldest family friends, Nigel & Mary Rose. This was hands down my favorite Park City experience.
|Husband face & I with Nigel & Mary Rose|
|Sunset, Park City|
We left Park City on July 5th all liquored out. We drove down to Moab to camp for one night and go to Arches National Park the next day. We completely lucked out with the weather and it rained that day so it wasn't the usual scorching heat (100) in Moab. Instead it topped out at about 80 that day. We found a little campsite at Granstaff Campground along the Colorado River just north of town. It was a great little campground except that it didn't really have water access. All I wanted to do was put my feet in the cool river. That area along Highway 128 just north of Moab is great because there are tons of campgrounds right along the river and you can just drive until you find one you like. However I have read that in spring and fall these sites fill up very quickly so it's best to get there early. We arrived about 4pm and found a site no problem.
|Camping at Granstaff Campground, Colorado River, Moab|
|360 degree panorama of our campsite|
|View from my reading spot on the Colorado River|
|Evening hike up the canyon behind our campsite|
After we left Moab we drove to Durango, Colorado. I had not been there since I was about 15 and what an amazing little town Durango is. The setting is beautiful. Unfortunately I did not take any photos as we proceeded to drink ourselves through Durango. Apparently one nights rest from the booze was enough for us. We started at Carver Brewery for a pre-dinner drink. For dinner we had food and drinks at Steamworks Brewery. They had a huge menu and delicious food but it was an hour wait for a table, even as early as 5:30. After dinner we headed to El Rancho for some post-food cocktails. I really like El Rancho because it had big open windows that let the light in, plus it had some top-notch wall murals... Finally we ended up at Irish Embassy to cap off the night. Ouch, my head hurt in the morning. I would highly recommend all of those places for vibe however husband-face wasn't to impressed with the beer at Carvers. And Irish Embassy apparently has a club at the back of it that seemed to let underage drinkers in.
The following day we drove down to Santa Fe, NM to my parents beautiful home in the hills outside town. I lived in Santa Fe for a couple months before I went to college and about 6 more months before I moved to California so I know the town a bit. And while I could never live in the desert again, I just need to be near water at all times, I can't discount the beauty and fun times Santa Fe has to offer.
|Officially hooked on mountain biking|
|One of the gorgeous gardens at my parent's house|
|Hiking with Mom|
|Santa Fe hiking panorama|
Some people may not know it but Santa Fe is actually known for it's exceptional food on top of it's southwest art. One of the best meals I have had in years was at Luminaria Restaurant at the Inn at Loretto. I am kicking myself for not taking photos, of both the setting and the food. We arrived for an early dinner at 5:30 and sat outside. They have a big deck that's covered and another more casual seating area with a firepit for people who just want cocktails. The food was....just wow. They only had one vegetarian entree on their menu but it was absolutely delicious. It's one of the places where they pair together flavors you would never think would be good but they work. Oh, and to top it off the pre and post-dinner treats they bring you are amazing. The bread basket had BEST blue corn muffins and with our check came chili dusted chocolate ganache truffles...I die.
When all of this wonderfulness was over we had to drive home in one day, 14 hours, it sucked. But it was all worth it and I can't wait for our next road trip!