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Dale & Debbie Part 43 - Great Basin National Park

Dale & Debbie Part 43 - Great Basin National Park

22nd Feb 2024

A Little Backtracking to Utah

We took a break from our Utah travels in the last newsletter to wish you a Happy New Year. Now we want to pick up where we left off and share our visit to Great Basin National Park.
After leaving Cathedral Gorge State Park, we headed to Great Basin National Park. There were more snowy mountains on the way as well as some wind turbines.
There was still so much snow in Great Basin NP that the 12 mile Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive was still not open. Darn, there were a couple of hikes we had hoped to take near the top. One being the Bristlecone Pine Trail where you can see the oldest living organisms in the world at Bristlecone Grove. And, if you continue up the trail a little further, you can also see Nevada’s only glacier.
Most of the lower trails were still covered in snow in the middle of May. This was due to the unusually high amount of snowfall last winter.
We toured the Lehman Caves in the park. They are unique due to the fact they are made of marble. You couldn’t prove it by me from looking at them though. They are normally lit up, but the day we choose to tour there just happened to be a planned electrical outage in town for some type of maintenance. So before purchasing our tickets they asked if we’d mind touring by lantern. We thought that sounded fun, but wondered if it would be too dark to see the formations. It turned out just fine with about 20 people carrying battery operated lanterns and our tour guide’s flashlight.
The day before we left they opened up part of the Wheeler Peak Scenic Drive, but we still couldn’t get near the top.
Unfortunately, it was not clear in the direction of the basin.
Next we headed to Torrey, Utah, just outside Capitol Reef National Park. We visited this gorgeous park in the past and just stopped again for a few days since it was along our route. And a good location to break up some mileage.

Bet you can’t guess what we saw along the way...
Below is some of the scenery in and around the town of Torrey and in Capitol Reef NP.
This is the Fremont River Gorge, and while you can’t see water in the river from this point, it’s there.
The photos below were taken on a scenic drive in Cathedral Valley, which is also part of the park.
As we headed toward Hanksville, the color disappeared!
Goblin Valley State Park
Some of the wildflowers in the area.
Driving to Horseshoe Canyon which is located in a remote extension of Canyonlands NP.
Horseshoe Canyon and dinosaur track in the canyon.
This canyon contains some of the most significant rock markings in North America. Some of the pictographs and petroglyphs are life-sized.
Hiking to Wild Horse Window

Next up...more amazing Utah!