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We like to take winter trips to Moab to get out of the Colorado snow. We visited the Islands in the Sky district of Canyonlands for the fourth time. We discovered new trails and views, and thoroughly enjoyed the two day trips up here. We stopped by Deadhorse Point State Park on the way in. This is another great place for families and those who can't walk far. Beautiful views. Enjoy the pics.

Follow this link to see Arches National Park, and the other Utah parks we have visited: Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, and Grand Staircase. 

Shafer Trail

Shafer Trail

We arrived at Islands in the Sky our first day, after a quick tour of Arches NP. One of the first views you get is the Shafer Trail, a dirt road that climbs up from the Colorado River 2000 feet up to Islands in the sky. On our last trip, we drove the Shafer Trail in our Volvo Cross Country. There was snow in the shady corners. One of the sketchiest roads I have driven.

Afternoon Sun on Canyon Walls

Afternoon Sun on Canyon Walls

We came up to capture a time lapse sunset, and got the great late afternoon light.

Snow in Canyon Country

Snow in Canyon Country

It snowed the day before we came, and most of the trails were snow covered.

Storm in the Distance

Storm in the Distance

We could see this storm rising from down in Arches, so we headed to Islands in the Sky in hopes of a sunset.

Grand View Overlook

Grand View Overlook

We perched here at the turnout just before the Grand View Overlook and set up the Go Pro to shoot sunset.

Sun-dappled Cliffs

Dusk

Clouds and Sun

Last Rays of the Day

Canyons go Purple

Canyons go Purple

with the last light of dusk

Monitor and Merrimack

Monitor and Merrimack

On our last day in Moab, we returned to Islands in the Sky. On the way up, one of the first views is of these two beauties.

Fins and Ridges

Fins and Ridges

We drove up early morning, after another sunrise in Arches NP. The early light splashes against the rock.

Geo Porn

Geo Porn

Our Norwegian friend Marit, the geologist, calls places like this Geo Porn. Millions of years of sediment exposed.

Deadhorse Point

Deadhorse Point

Our first stop was the State Park on the way out to Islands in the Sky. You look down on the Colorado in Meander Canyon, as it heads towards Canyonlands. We took a raft trip through Canyonlands and Cataract Canyon. We put in here.

Remembering a Float Trip

Remembering a Float Trip

We have floated the Colorado here and the Grand Canyon. This is not as crazy a ride as the Grand.

Shafer Trail

Shafer Trail

Here we see the Shafer Trail just one level above the Colorado.

Shafer Trail winds up the Canyon

Shafer Trail winds up the Canyon

You can see the dirt track winding up. If you look closely, you see it skirts around the first Canyon wall, then switchbacks up the next wall through the snow.

Selfie at the Canyon Overlook

Selfie at the Canyon Overlook

Had a nice stone bench at the edge. I propped the camera on a boulder and set the timer.

Multi-Colored Walls

One last look at the Shafer Trail

One last look at the Shafer Trail

still can't believe we went up this thing.

Meanders slow the River

Meanders slow the River

There is hardly any current in this section of the river. Most day trips go 25 miles upstream to get some riffles and fast water. The big water comes after the confluence with the Green River in Cataract Canyon.

Remembering our First Visit

Remembering our First Visit

We came camping out here in March 1973 as part of a ten week trip out west six months after we married.

Snow in the Desert

Snow in the Desert

It is always special to see snow in the canyon and desert country.

Pretty Morning

River Overlook

White Rim

White Rim

The White Rim trail goes off the Shafer Trail and follows the edge of the White Rim.

Green River Overlook

Green River Overlook

When we came back into Islands in the Sky, we took the road to the Green River Overlook, since we had gone the other direction our first night.

Snow on the Cliffs

We wondered what mountains we were seeing

We wondered what mountains we were seeing

Across the abyss we could see snow-capped mountains in the distance. We wondered what we were seeing.

Henry Mountain View

Henry Mountain View

Last winter when we visited Zion, Bryce and Capitol Reef, we drove through Grand Staircase, up and over the Henry Mountains.

Earth's Drain

Earth's Drain

Snowmelt and rainwater run off the Colorado Plateau down through Bryce, Zion, Grand Staircase into the basins of the Colorado and Green River. From there, they drain into the Grand Canyon and head to the see.

Deadwood Branches

Deadwood Branches

We took the short circle hike through the snow to Mesa Arch, which we had not seen on our earlier trips.

Mesa Arch appears

Genie at the Arch

Genie at the Arch

This hike is a half mile loop with huge bang for the buck.

Gregg at the Edge

Arch View

Genie peers over the Edge

Rock Heads on the White Rim Overlook Trail

Rock Heads on the White Rim Overlook Trail

Our next hike was the 1.8 mile hike out the narrow peninsula to the White Rim Overlook.

Views from the Rim

White Rim 2000 feet below

White Caps

White Caps

Interesting formations below

Looking out to the Point

Looking out to the Point

Here is our destination, the White Rim Overlook.

Views from White Rim Overlook

Views from White Rim Overlook

The drop off was sketchy, vertigo-inducing.

And, Look the Other Way

Overhanging rock

Overhanging rock

You can see how the softer rock erodes leaving harder rock exposed on top.

Don't Look Down

Views Forever

Genie at the Overlook

Gregg at the Edge

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