As I mentioned in my previous post, after returning from my work trip in Tucson, we drove down to Moab for a day to celebrate our first wedding anniversary. Moab is only about 3.5 hours from Salt Lake, which makes it a great spot for a quick trip away from the city into the land of red rocks!
After checking into our hotel, the Hampton Inn Moab, we changed into our hiking gear and headed out to Arches National Park.
Arches National Park
We’ve been to Arches a few times now (like this time and this time plus some others not blogged), so we decided to visit an area of the park we haven’t explored yet— the Devil’s Garden area. It’s at the very end of the main park road. There’s a campground and a trailhead. After some preliminary research, we decided to take an easy hike out to the Landscape Arch.
The trip was 1.6 miles round trip, plus an additional half mile or so that we went past the arch to continue up the trail. The trail has very little grade and is family friendly. In fact, the trail was heavily trafficked by families with young children.
We continued to start the Double O Arch trail, but didn’t have enough time. Arches National Park is doing major construction on its roads, so currently the Devil’s Garden campground is closed and all visitors must be out of the park by 7pm, and the road reopens at 7am. We decided not to risk getting towed, so we chose not to do the Double O arch this visit.
The Landscape Arch is special because it has the longest span of any arch in North America. China has three arches with the the claim for the longest arch in the world. Arches is definitely worth a visit for both native Utahns and visitors alike!
Miguel’s Baja Grill
After a long drive and some hiking, we decided to find some yummy food on the main street in Moab downtown area. We landed at Miguel’s Baja Grill, which seems like a shack from the outside, but turned out to be quite busy and a neat indoor/outdoor space.
Brighton ordered the MOAB Burrito (Mother of All Burritos), haha. It was as large as his plate and it was truly a giant of a burrito. I ordered the steak enchiladas with the red sauce. Both were good, and the steak was seasoned well. Great for a tasty meal in town, but I’d try somewhere else next visit for variety.
After dinner, we grabbed some frozen yogurt from MoYo (Moab Yogurt), and relaxed at the hotel.
Prior to visiting, we decided that we wanted to do something unique and novel while we were in Moab since it was a special trip for our anniversary. After some research on Trip Advisor, we found the 4×4 T-Rex Tour that had some amazing reviews. People said it was a “must do in Moab” and we were looking for something a little different than just hiking or mountain biking. We decided to just go for it!
4×4 T-Rex 4×4 Tour on Hell’s Revenge Trail
Moab Tourism Center
471 South Main Street #8
Moab, UT 84532
We signed up for the earliest tour possible (8am) because it seemed like it might be a little more quiet than other options. We were very wrong. It turns out the weekend we chose to go to Moab was Jeep Safari Week. We saw at a line of at least 20 Jeeps while we were on the trails. This is a popular spot for Jeeps and 4x4s to crawl the rocks in Moab.
The tour itself was also an awesome experience! We chose the “U Drive” since we’re both 21+ and have Drivers Licenses. The vehicles we drove are basically golf carts on steroids with crazy suspension and power.
When we first entered the trail, you drive up the Devil’s Backbone which has steep drops on either side. If someone wasn’t there leading the way, and telling me that these vehicles can handle this amount of work and maneuvering, I would have turned around there! Honestly, the whole time I kept telling myself, “trust the vehicle, if the guide can do it, we can do it” and then let Brighton drive for most of the trip. 🙂 I did some of the difficult parts, but it was more fun for me to be a passenger than a driver!
Our tour guide, Kristin, was also really great. She gave us great instructions and made me feel safe the entire time. She was also knowledgable about the history of the area, including previous dinosaur trails and how the popularity of Moab grew into what it is now!
The trail takes about 2-3 hours to complete on average, and the tour was about 2.5 hours total. The length of the trail is 6.5 miles and the land is managed by the BLM and Grand County. It’s rated a 6/10 by the Red Rock Four Wheelers. You can find more info on the trail stats and management at Grand County’s website here.
Overall, I am so happy that we chose to do this experience. It was memorable, unique, and gave me an entirely different view of the options in Moab! I want to go back and try it in a Jeep with some more friends! I also want to take my Florida visitors back for a one of a kind experience in red rock country!
What’s the difference between a UTV and an ATV?
The short version is:
- ATV = All Terrain Vehicle
- UTV = Utility Task Vehicle
- ATVs are usually the 1- or 2-person vehicles that are smaller for racing/sports/recreational use. The rider(s) straddle the seat in the middle. The steering is with handlebars like a bike.
- UTVs (or side-by-sides, 4x4s, etc.) are designed for rougher terrain (like the Hell’s Revenge Trail!), hauling, and have some major power! You can seat 2-6+ people in an UTV. UTVs you sit side by side, in bench or bucket seats (like your car). The steering is a wheel similar to a car or truck.
Peace Tree Cafe
Peace Tree Cafe
20 S Main St
Moab, UT 84532
After our tour, we were ready for lunch and to head back to Salt Lake! We stopped in Peace Tree Cafe for a quick bite. We both ordered the chicken sandwich which exceeded our expectations! It was a freshly grilled chicken breast with fresh veggies and yummy sauce, made to order. I also got a smoothie which was equally as fresh. I liked they made a peace sign grill mark on the tops of our burger buns.
What adventures do you recommend in Moab? Have you ever celebrated an anniversary or birthday with an active vacation before?