Explore the Wild West
VIP Adventure welcomes you to the beautiful western state of Utah. The state is a magnet for adventurers like you who want the very best of mother nature's breathtaking landscapes and the very best recreational activities along with access to world-class accommodations.
Defined by the great diversity of its rugged terrain, Utah has everything from arid deserts to pine forests to mountain ranges. The state has five magnificent national parks.
We'll start our adventure in the east where we find soaring red rock columns, fins, and arches that have made the area famous. The natural elements have shaped the area into features not found anywhere else in the world.
Surrounded by all this beauty, it's no wonder that tourism is a major industry and that many popular films, like Transformers, and television series, like WestWorld, have used the breathtaking natural scenery as a shooting location.
Five Hundred Million Years of History
Situated south of the Colorado River, the region started taking on its characteristic features about 500 million years ago. Believe it or not, the area had been a vast ocean in an even more distant past. Once the sea had dried up, natural water erosion caused the different layers of compacted petrified sand and salt to be revealed.
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Today, both the Green and Colorado rivers continue the carving out of the canyons, formations, and slopes. Given the age of the rock being exposed, it should come as no surprise that dinosaur tracks and fossils have been found.
The town of Moab will be the jumping off point for our daily exploration of the thousands of kilometers of backcountry, desert flats, dunes, canyons, and mountains. Our vehicle of choice is the always fun-to-drive Can-Am Maverick; it's ideally suited for Moab's many different off-road terrains and will get us into the places otherwise difficult to access.
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Located at an elevation of 1 227 meters, Moab has an arid climate and receives on average less than 3 cm of rainfall per month. The region is seriously hot during the summer and chilly during the winter. Daytime temperatures can climb to 37 degrees C and remain at that level for days on end. So, we're going to keep on a liberal dose of sunscreen and have a generous supply of water handy at all times.
As incredible to discover as the geology, the wildlife has adapted to the temperature and moisture stresses of the region. We find coyotes, black-tailed jackrabbits, porcupines, toads, and many songbirds.
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Most animals are nocturnal and shelter during the daytime, but some like the antelope squirrels, lizards, snakes, rodents, hawks, and eagles are active.
The daily weather also plays a determining role as to which animals we may, with luck, be able to spot as we tour.
Out on the Town
Taking a stroll along Moab's Main Street, you'll notice that it has a wide selection of restaurants, microbreweries, shops, and southwestern style art galleries. The eateries have diverse menus to please any palate, everything from regional Mediterranean grill to Vietnamese. We may want to reserve a day for a Sea-Doo excursion on Lake Powell, and if we ever have any more downtime, kayaking, rafting or even skydiving trips can also be booked.
Explore Sand Flats
Let's hit the trail early and head off to Sand Flats Recreation Area. Ironically, Sand Flats is not all flat or sandy. It has some tremendous 4x4 trails along slick rock domes, bowls, and canyons. Popular with campers, Sand Flats has over 60 km of off-road trails with fantastic scenery. It's worth having a park ranger guided hiking tour of this beautiful area.
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If you're an experienced driver and want a challenge, the horseshoe-shaped Hell's Gate is it. The 10 km long Hell's Revenge Trail is not for the faint of heart. After riding up a narrow V-shaped canyon wall, you may ask yourself if the small and tilted rock bridge in front of you is wide enough to accommodate your vehicle. Yes, it is. In climbing this steep rock wall, are all my wheels on the ground? Chances are they're not. Did my heart skip a few beats. Most likely. Steep drop-offs on rock faces followed by water crossing add to the challenge. When you've completed this part of the trail, you'll be rewarded with fantastic 360-degree views from the top of the features.
Arches National Park
This park contains an astonishing 2 000 natural sandstone arches, the world's largest concentration of these geological wonders. We pull over and take a short 20-minute hike to explore some of the largest arches.
Though there is a paved scenic drive, thanks to our vehicles, we'll be able to explore the hard to reach areas of this extraordinary park. We see massive sandstone fins and enormous boulders teetering precariously on top of one another.
Balanced Rock is one of the park's best-known features. Weighing in at just under 635 thousand kg, the first boulder is 22 meters high with the Balanced Rock being 17 meters. Whichever way you look at it, this is mind-blowing!
Canyonlands National Park & Zion
Island in the Sky is a mesa in Canyonlands. The Grand View Point Overlook offers breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding region for 150 km in any direction and a plunging view of more than 360 meters into the surrounding canyons. It's a must-see!
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With its amazing sunrises, brilliant sunsets, and glimmering night skies, Zion is a jaw-dropping natural spectacle.
Soaring canyon walls and red-hued landscapes await those of us that like to experience nature on an epic scale. Don't miss the unique opportunity to see this remarkable National Park from an off-road trail perspective.
Utah is an outdoor paradise!