Time for Fall Adventures
Posted in: Entertainment, Outdoor adventures, Travel on September 24, 2021.
Summer is officially over. And that’s good news for all you travelers, because autumn is the best time to vacation in Southern Utah. That’s our opinion, anyway. But we’ve got some pretty good reasons to back that claim up.
First, there are fewer people in the national parks. Which means that you can explore them in relative solitude. Second, the days are cooler. The summer heat can be intense on the trail, but with the advent of fall, you can go hiking at any time of day. And third, the colorful foliage adds another layer of beauty to the already fantastic views.
So trust us – after all, we’ve been the premier hotel near Capitol Reef for 30 years – fall is the best time to visit Southern Utah. Here’s a short list of some things you can do this autumn:
Epic Road Trip
The best road trip in Utah, and pretty much the world, is called the Grand Circle Tour. It takes you to Utah’s five national parks — Zion, Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Bryce Canyon. And if you feel like it, you can throw in the Grand Canyon too. You will see an amazing amount of scenery on this trip. And if you do it this time of year, you get the added bonus of seeing the changing colors of fall. You can read all about this epic road trip in our recent blog post about it.
Cathedral Valley – Parts Unknown
Southern Utah is a pretty big place. So there are lots of secret places and hidden gems to discover. One of our favorites? Cathedral Valley. Cathedral Valley is part of the northern section of Capitol Reef. It’s so remote that its was mostly unvisited and completely unmapped until the 1960s. Geologist C.E. Dutton said of it, “The colors are such as no pigment can portray. They are deep, rich, and variegated; and so luminous are they, that the light seems to flow or shine out of the rock rather than to be reflected from it.” Go explore Cathedral Valley’s colors while the desert heat is mild. We’ve written a definitive guide to help you know what to expect.
Get Some Culture
We’re talking about the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Held in Cedar City, Utah, the festival brings in locals, out-of-state travelers, and even international Shakespeare gurus. (And if Shakespeare isn’t your favorite, don’t worry there are plenty of other, more modern, productions to choose from.) The southwest desert location of the festival creates a stunning backdrop for the phenomenal performances, especially those in the famous outdoor theatre. Plus, it’s their 60th anniversary season this year, so they’re pulling out all the stops. You can see the current line up of plays here. Our top pick? Richard the Third.
Avoid the Crowds at Zion
As we’ve mentioned before, Zion National Park is one of the greatest places in Utah. But the summer brings in serious crowds – and that was doubly true this year, as people were needing to get out of their houses after long periods of social isolation. But fall is the time to avoid the crush of other sightseers. Plus the cottonwoods turn a brilliant yellow in late October. If you want some helpful tips on what to do when visiting Zion, check out this in-depth review that we created.
Time for You to Explore
That’s our list. We at the Lodge at Red River Ranch hope you get out and explore the best of Southern Utah in the best season for exploring.