Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah – AKA Westworld


This adventure was inspired by HBO’s “Westworld”.  The setting reminded us so much of Utah, and Google informed that it was shot just two hours away from us in Utah’s Dead Horse Point State Park.

Impulse started kicking in and fate played its course.  A beautiful mid 70’s weekend forecast was in store, and knowing that winter was near (being mid November) we absolutely had to see if this place was as cool as the show makes it look.

So we headed out Saturday morning and found an AWESOME primitive camping area along Long Canyon Road, just a few miles north of the Park’s entrance (right off of 313).

Arrive 1

After taking in the scene for a moment, we posted up and made some lunch before heading into the park for a look.

Arrive 2

Being that it was late afternoon and sunsets were getting to be earlier we decided to just have a quick look along the East Rim hiking trail and planned on heading back in the next day to explore some more.

ER 1

Yup, this was shaping up to be pretty, pretty awesome!

ER 2

Dead Horse Point Overlook

After a 3 mile round trip hike on the East Rim we headed back to camp to start dinner before it got dark.


We were in for a beautiful night!

This was the weekend of the Super Moon (11/2016), and in the desert, it was in full effect.

We slept in the next morning, munched out, and packed up before heading back into the park to do the entire hiking loop – West Rim to East Rim.

WR 1

WR 2

This park is absolutely gorgeous and the camping along Long Canyon Road is simply bananas.  Can’t wait for it to start getting warm out, cause we will be back there as soon as it does!

The Grand Tour with Mom & Dad

Taking advantage of the late start to winter, Moshe and Adrienne decided to pay us a visit in the last week of October to see what all the fuss over Western Colorado is about.  The fuss is not only the beauty of Palisade, but the proximity to such diverse landscapes; the mission was to show the parents as much as possible.

Utah – Moab & Arches National Park

On our first full day we rode west to Utah for a day trip to Arches and, thanks to the advice my awesome barber Earl, we took the incredible Scenic Byway 128 route which hugs the Colorado River all the way to Moab.


The scenery was Amazing and we stopped multiple times to take it in, and of course, snap a whole lot of pictures.




We arrived in Moab in time for lunch and enjoyed a fantastic meal at Eklecticafe before heading into Arches for the main event of the day – although one could argue the drive was equally incredible.


Arches is great for a day trip since it’s a relatively small park and a lot of ground can be covered.


We hit a number of iconic looks outs


and Mom couldn’t take enough pictures! (who can blame her?)


Local Fun in Palisade

It’s easy to get caught up in day trips and forget that Palisade/Grand Junction has so much to offer.  With that in mind, we made sure to give the parents a taste of our heaven and our first order of business was a tasting at Sprigs & Sprouts.


This place is awesome!  There are so many spreads and jams along with the huge selection of flavored oils and vinegars.

From there we had a quick stop to line our bellies before proceeding to sample the wine at Colterris.


Of course we had a look around the vineyard’s beautiful property and enjoyed the views of Mount Garfield.


The day finished with a bomb dinner at il Bistro Italiano which rivals South Philly Italian cuisine (almost…) and a trip the Brewery for the Halloween party.

Aspen/Maroon Bells

With solid desert days under our belts, our last foray drove home the diverse topography our location has to offer.  Just a two hour drive west brings us to the red desert of Moab Utah while driving two hours east brings us to the towering 14,000 ft mountains (14ers) in the White River National Forest.


We drove to Maroon Bells just east of Aspen which is touted as the most photographed place in Colorado.


Guess we can see why!

We walked around the short loop that provides incredible perspectives the of area.



After finishing our stroll, we headed into Aspen.


And sat down at the White House Tavern to an incredible experience.  Everything was amazing.  Kinda wanting to find a reason to get back to Aspen just to eat there again!


Colorado National Monument

On the last full day of their trip, Amy took Mom to the Monument to show her the amazingness that is just a 30 minute drive from our house.



Pretty successful trip!

Full Circle – Back to Palisade, CO

After a year + on the road during which we resided in Western Colorado, Austin Texas, The Central Coast of California and Northwestern Montana one idea became clear: going back to live in Philadelphia – or any major city for that matter – was NOT happening.

So we headed back to where the adventure began, a place that remained top of mind since we left it, Palisade Colorado.  Our two day drive from Montana took us through Utah where we spent a night and when we woke up, the sheer beauty of the sun rise confirmed that we were on the correct path.


There were definitely a lot of emotions as we neared the Colorado border.  The butterflies that accompanied us in the previous four transitions were not there as we rolled through familiar territory.  Did this mark the end of an era in our lifetime?  Were we really planning on moving to Palisade for the foreseeable future?  Three weeks into our stay and we still are not clear on all this, but one thing is for certain: seeing the Welcome to Colorado sign felt good!


Our first week consisted of unpacking, settling in and reuniting with the amazing friends we left exactly one year ago.  Then Amy was packing up to go to Florida for Ryder Love’s baby naming and I was on my own for a week.  Fortunately, there is plenty to do!  I got the camping gear together and headed to the Utah desert for a camping trip with Chica Bear.


We drove to Goblin Valley and posted up on Wild Horse Road near the Little Wile Horse Canyon trailhead.  While it was a beautiful night, next time I’ll scout for a site a bit further from the trailhead as a family of 14 decided to post up right next to me – there goes a quiet night in the desert.

The next morning we woke up, Chica ate some kibble and I enjoyed spaghetti and meat sauce left overs from the night before.  All fed, we were off to check out Little Wild Horse Canyon.


The plan was to do the 8 mile loop through Little Wild Horse and come back from Bell Canyon.  Unfortunately, there were very deep pools about half way into the hike and we had to head back the way we came.  Still an amazing experience!

On the way back home Chica and I decided to stop in Rabbit Valley where I saw signs for The Trail Through Time which piqued my interest.  Turns out this area has massive amounts of dinosaur fossils and in this picture you can see bones preserved in the rock.


On Sunday, we watched the Eagles game and after a stinging loss, hung out at the river beach right by our house.


Then I dropped an exhausted Chica back at the house and went to a desert party with Ashley and Dusty.  The picture doesn’t reflect how beautiful the night sky was, but you get the point.


Definitely getting used to country life.

Glacier National Park – Elana Visit

After a quiet week to ourselves, Elana came thru to have a look at Montana.  Being the smart woman she is, Elana took our advice and stayed a full week which would give her a chance to really soak in country life.Neighborhood


Tour of the neighborhood

As a bonus, she got to experience the insane weather events that mosey on through Big Arm.


The storm was moving east over Big Arm Bay at an incredible pace, dumping rain on Flathead Lake, and providing for an INSANE experience where it appeared the rainbow led the charge.

Glacier NP

The relaxing first day of the visit was a nice way to ease into the intensity of a Glacier weekend.  For our last foray into the park – for this trip – we decided to head back to Many Glacier and hike Grinnell Glacier Trail.  Since the forecast for Sunday was cloudy, we made sure to take Going-To-The-Sun-Road on the way in so Elana could get the full Glacier NP experience.


She was pretty pumped about it.

Once we arrived at East Glacier we headed to our go-to campground, Chewing Blackbones; it’s 25 minutes from the trail and always has plenty of space.

Camp 1

We chilled by the fire, had a couple drinks and got to sleep early in anticipation of the hike.

Grinnell Glacier Trail – 11 miles round trip, elevating over 2,000 ft

One of the many fantastic aspects of this hike is that the ill sh*t starts 5 minutes in and doesn’t stop.

Hike 1

The trail begins by hugging Switftcurrent Lake which transitions into Lake Josephine providing for a relatively flat walk to start.  Once the trail approaches the back end of Lake Josephine, the climbing begins.

Hike 2.1

YES! We know there are bears roaming around Glacier NP; you don’t have to scare the shit out of us right when we’re getting to the good part of the hike.

Hike 3.1

Just kidding…it’s probably a good thing.

Moving on…the hike starts to really elevate at this point revealing the types of views you only get at high altitude.

Hike 3

The trail was definitely well traveled (which is a good thing in an area where bears frequent) and we took an opportunity to get a picture of all three of us.

Hike 4

Old dude who took it asked if we were European.  We must seem really out of place…

Walking up to Grinnell Lake was amazing.

Hike 5.2

The sun was hitting it just right as we approached and we decided to plop down and recharge on some jerky.

Hike 5

And of course have a photo shoot of this ridiculous view.

The remainder of the climb brought dropping temperatures accompanied by steep and rocky terrain.  In our experience, the hardest treks provide for the most rewarding experience which could only mean one thing: the Grinnell Glacier is going to be ridiculous.

Hike 6

So it’s more of a melting Glacier…incredible nonetheless; worth every step.

The way back (the mission), as always, provides a totally different perspective making going down as awe inspiring as the way up.

Hike 7

From this viewpoint all three lakes are visible in succession: Grinnell Lake, Lake Josephine, Swiftcurrent Lake

After the hike, Amy and Elana thought it would be a good idea to rinse the day off in really REALLY cold water.

Once they came to their senses and got out we headed back to camp for a relaxing night by the fire.

Camp 2

The next morning it started to hail – yes it was hailing – in Glacier and we hauled ass back to Big Arm.

We spent the last couple days of Elana’s trip working during the day and hanging around Flathead Lake in the evenings.

We paid a visit to the Flathead Lake Brew Pub on the way to dinner in Big Fork

Flathead Brewery

And of course got some paddle boarding in.

Paddle 1

Can you see em?

Chica even managed to get on the water.

Paddle 2

This was the perfect week to precede the “wind down weeks” leading to our departure at the end of September.