If Moab isn’t already on your bucket list, it needs to be. And don’t just take my word for it! Brandi Cyrus went on an Outdoorsy road trip and came back to say, “If you’ve ever wished you could travel to Mars, I highly recommend a trip to Moab, Utah.”
Now that you’ve added to your bucket list, let’s plan your trip!
Where to Go
Brandi, her boyfriend, Ry, and her dog, Astra, headed off on a 4 day RV trip to and around Moab, Utah. They started in Denver where Ry saw the Rocky Mountains of Colorado for the first time and made the 6-hour drive to Moab. There they spent their days hiking, driving, and horseback riding around Mars — oops, I mean Moab.
Brandi’s Road Trip Itinerary
- Arches National Park
- Canyonlands National Park
- Hunter Canyon & Hauer Ranch
- Fisher Towers
First on the agenda, Arches National Park!
Arches National Park
Before the sun was up, Brandi, Ry, and Astra were already headed into Arches National Park. ” The very first and most important suggestion I can make for anyone exploring a national park is get up before the sun,” Brandi says. Not only will you get great photos, but you’ll also beat the crowd!
Prominently featured on Utah license plates is Delicate Arch, the most recognizable arch in the park. It stands atop one of Arches’ famous sandstone fins and is far larger and more magnificent than the license plates may lead you to believe.
Hikers often flock to see Delicate Arch at sunset, but Brandi and Ry took a different approach. The two did this 3-mile roundtrip trek at sunrise, watching as the sun started to cast its light on the canyon. This made for a peaceful, beautiful morning.
Corona Arch, or Little Rainbow Bridge, is one of the largest arches in Moab. The hike to it takes you three different aches — Pinto, Bowtie, and Corona. There isn’t a huge gain in elevation, but there is some climbing to be done on this 2.3-mile trek, making it fun for adults, kids, and dogs!
Canyonlands National Park
The next morning, the group headed to Canyonlands National Park. The drive from Moab to Canyonland is roughly 40 minutes, so keep that in mind if you, like Brandi, are trying to catch the sunrise.
Found in the Island in the Sky section of Canyonlands, Mesa Arch lays at the edge of a cliff. Gazing through the stone arch, you’ll have views of the La Sal Mountains, the canyon beyond, and the rock spires below.
At sunrise, Brandi and Ry made their way to Mesa Arch. The sun casts its light through the arch as it rises, making it a very popular time for photographers. Expect a decent crowd!
The Island in the Sky scenic drive takes you along the rim of the canyon. Each overlook along the way offers a different view of the canyon, but Green River Overlook and Buck Canyon Overlook were the couple’s favorites. Both offer great views of the vast canyon.
Scenic Highway 128
This drive takes you along the Colorado River and through rock formations which is an incredible sight to see. Brandi described it writing, “There’s nothing better than a drive along a river, and the green waters of the Colorado River make a stunning contrast against the red-orange rocks that make up the southeastern border of Arches National Park.”
Hunter Canyon & Hauer Ranch
Brandi’s last full day in Moab was complete with a hike and a horseback ride. What could be better?
Another day, another sunrise hike. This dog-friendly, 3.2-mile trail is a laidback, and typically less-crowded, one. It takes you along a creek through a narrow canyon and is known for wildlife and wildflowers.
To close out the day with a sunset horseback ride, Brandi and Ry headed to Hauer Ranch. The American West scenery makes it a popular destination for films. The ride goes through creeks and the Colorado River, over sand dunes, and past Fisher Towers. The horses are well taken care of and in great condition. All you have to do is sit back, ride, and enjoy.
Before leaving Moab, one last stop at Fisher Towers, some interestingly shaped and very photogenic rocks and a popular spot for rock climbers. The Fisher Towers Trail is 4.5 miles, dog-friendly, and accessible all year. You’re met with great views the entire way as you hike and climb your way to the towers.
What to Eat
Brandi and Ry packed and made a lot of their own food and coffee. If that’s your jam, try out some easy RV recipes, like pour-over coffee or a skillet pizza. When you feel like treating yourself, two Moab spots worth mentioning are Doughbird and Sorrel River Ranch.
If you’re in the mood for a good cup of joe and a donut, Doughbird is the place to be! Brandi had nothing but praise for the little shop saying, “It was BOMB.COM and hands down the best coffee we had on the entire trip!” And if you have a hankering for a fried chicken sandwich, you can get that there too. Watch out Popeyes and Chick-fil-A; you’ve got some more competition!
A notable spot to stop for lunch or dinner along Highway 128, Sorrel River Ranch sources ingredients from its own garden. This farm-to-table dining experience is a treat! Eat at River Grill or indulge in a communal 4-course chef’s tasting dinner in the Homestead Garden featuring flavors from local farms and purveyors.
What to Drive
Brandi rented her rig on Outdoorsy from Denver Adventure Vans. A great choice for any road tripper, the Mercedes Benz Sprinter is an easy drive and can be outfitted for any type of adventure on or off-road. Sprinter vans can comfortably sleep 3 people and are typically built out to include all the comforts of home from the kitchen to the bathroom.
Rent a Sprinter Van of your own or other Class B rigs for your next road trip!
What to Pack
Moab in November is typically a bit chilly, but on a sunny day of hiking, you’ll warm up as you wander. That said, packing layers is essential and recommended for almost every road trip.
Some essential layers include on a trip to Moab:
- a puffer jacket
- turtle neck
- a beanie
- wool socks
For early mornings, Brandi recommends packing:
- a blanket
- an insulated mug (full of hot coffee, of course)
- a small breakfast
And if you’re planning to take in all the scenery via horseback, make sure you have:
- close-toed shoes (boots with a heel preferred)
- a hat
- water and snacks
Last, but not least, make sure to pack all the hiking necessities!
Mosey to Moab
Mosey on over to Moab with Brandi’s itinerary as your map! And for more tips and details about her trip, check out her blog on Style Native.