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Old 05-14-2019, 04:52 PM   #1
Tad and Carol
 
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Smile Mighty 5 in Utah

I am currently planning a trip to see the Mighty 5 National Parks in Utah. I would appreciate suggestions for where to camp and the ‘must see places’. We can spend 1-2 weeks.
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Old 05-14-2019, 08:52 PM   #2
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We were in southern Utah in April. We stayed in Kanab @ J&J RV Park, used this for our base and drove to Zion NP, Bryce Canyon NP, and don’t forget about Upper & Lower Antelope Canyon in Page AZ. We spent 10 days in Page & Kanab, there is so much to see. The visitors center in Kanab was very helpful.
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Old 05-14-2019, 09:39 PM   #3
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National Forest campgrounds and private campgrounds in that area might have more available campsites than the National Park campgrounds, especially if you have not already made reservations for this season...

Spend as much time as you can as there is so much to see... and so little time!
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Old 05-14-2019, 11:59 PM   #4
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We did Zion, Capitol Reef and Kodachrome Basin(Utah state park) in 2 weeks last October. I wouldn't want to do more. Would feel rushed.
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Old 05-15-2019, 01:26 PM   #5
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Utah National Parks

We are planning to tour Natl Parks in Utah this summer. Moab, UT will be our base camp for Arches and Canyonlands. We are booked at RV Park, but cannot give you a review! We figured at least one day at Arches and 2 at Canyonlands. Then, 2 1/2 hour drive to Capitol Reef. Giving that 2 days and on to Bryce Canyon. Staying at Ruby's RV Park, so we can take the shuttle. Two touring days in Bryce and then on to Zion for four days. That will be 12 full days of national park wonders. This does not count how many days it will take you to get to Moab. The websites for the national parks give ideas for what to do and see, depending on how much time you have to spend in the park. That might help you figure out your priorities. In essence, you can't see everything, and that is a good thing. Enjoy what you do see and plan to come back again.
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Old 05-15-2019, 01:45 PM   #6
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We did all five last fall in 6 weeks, plus Northern Rim and Southern Rim of Grand Canyon, Hoover Dam, Pikes Peak, and several sites in/near Colorado Springs. You should be able to do the Utah Five in two weeks. This is how we spread out the different RV Parks for the Utah portion of the trip.

10.24.18-10.27.18 Moab, Utah. Canyonlands/Arches
10.28.18-10.29.18. Moab, Utah to Torrey, Utah (136.6 miles) Capitol Reef
10.30.18-11.03.18. Torrey, Utah to Kanab, Utah (174 miles). Bryce/Zion

Campgrounds:

Moab ?
Torrrey ?

Kanab, UT
Kanab RV Corral
483 South 100 East
Kanab, UT
(435) 644-5330
Sites 16 & 17
$40.87 per night/
Confirmed
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Old 05-15-2019, 02:00 PM   #7
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I don't do National Parks, I just wander around in them. In 2 weeks you can see a lot. Part of the enjoyment to me is to figure out a plan when we get there. It works best in the off season. I agree about exploring the idea of finding a nice camp spot and commuting to the parks.
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Old 05-15-2019, 03:21 PM   #8
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We have stayed at Zion River RV Park several times. It is just outside the south entrance to Zion NP, and gives easy day drive access to Bryce, Capital Reef, Cedar Breaks, and the Grand Canyon north rim. We often use that spot as our "headquarters" for scenic drive day trips, rather than hitching up every few days to drive a few hours to the next stop.

We also enjoy staying at Shady Acres RV Park in Green River, UT, with easy access to both Arches and Canyonlands without the hustle and bustle of the town of Moab. Don't miss the chance to drive along the Colorado River on State Route 128 which heads East our of Moab. It is one of the most scenic drives in the area.

Green River also hosts one of the best ever museums celebrating the John Wesley Powell expedition down the Colorado River. There are also a few really good restaurants there.
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Old 05-15-2019, 03:26 PM   #9
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Personally, Zion is way to crowded, even in October...won't be back. Capitol Reef was our favorite.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:02 PM   #10
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Mighty 5

We did all 5 last spring and added Mesa Verde. It is about three hours from Arches. We managed to get reservations for the Square House tour, which only happens a couple of times a week and they only allow ten people. Also, about an hour outside of Zion is the Kanarraville slot canyon. They charge for parking but if you like slot canyons, it is beautiful. You do have to walk in some cold water.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:08 PM   #11
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Mighty 5

We stayed at the Cannonville KOA, outside of Bryce. Willis Creek is a great hike, within a few miles of the KOA on the way to Kodachrome. We also stayed at Thousand Lakes RV Park outside of Capital Reef, in Torrey Utah.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:13 PM   #12
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Since Moab is very expensive for RV camping, we stayed at Green River State Park on I-70 for Arches, Canyonlands, and Goblin Valley. Not that bad of a drive to either. For Bryce canyon we stayed at Red Canyon FS campground a little west of Bryce on 12.
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Old 05-15-2019, 05:16 PM   #13
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Arches

We stayed at Granstaff Campground on the Colorado River, Hwy 128. It only holds trailers less than 25 feet and has no services, not even water, but it is beautiful. We did a white water rafting tour. Granstaff is first come, first served so get there early in the day. It doesn't cost much.
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Old 05-15-2019, 09:39 PM   #14
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You didn't say when you are planning your trip. If it is well in advance, I have said it before and will say it again. Stay IN the parks if you can get reservations. I've spent enough time in my life commuting and my time is more precious than having to commute, wait in lines to even get into the parks or wait in line to get on a shuttle. Yes it will be crowded regardless of time of year and yes you will need to take shuttles once there, but if you are staying there you can get an earlier start and honestly there is a different vibe once the day crowds leave. There are evening programs and other activities throughout the days. If you bike, bike paths are fantastic in these national parks. See them NOW before they are exploited and their resources are all used up. We are in Yosemite now and are always in awe of such beauty.
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Old 05-16-2019, 06:42 AM   #15
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Mighty Five

Visited all 5 plus Grand Canyon, Meteor Crater& Carlsbad caverns last August/September. Made a reservation at Thompson Springs for first day. Thereafter, found full hookup commercial campgrounds without much effort. Had planned on BLM sites but was not necessary. You can do the big 5 in two weeks just fine. Enjoy your trip and have fun!
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Old 05-21-2019, 07:34 AM   #16
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In Moab, we stayed at Archview CG. Get a pull through site if you can, great view of sunrise over Arches NP. Very convenient to Arches and Canyonlands NP's. Away from the traffic of Moab. Also a don't miss is Dead Horse State Park.
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Old 05-21-2019, 10:14 AM   #17
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Utah National Parks

Thanks for the heads up about Dead Horse State Park. We are already booked at another RV park, but the one you mentioned sounds great!
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Old 06-28-2019, 12:26 AM   #18
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We did a tour through Utah a few years ago renting an RV. Campgrounds were Zion River Resort, which I though was the nicest one of the 5 and wish we'd stayed longer with all the trails at Zion we missed. Ruby's Inn RV Park near Bryce was good, but didn't need 3 days in Bryce. Moab Valley RV Resort which is right across from the Arches National park. Goulding's Campground in Monument Valley which was a great location for us. We did this in June and it was hot, so we left early and stayed a night at the Grand Canyon inside the park for a night to cool off a little.

If you end up like we did in Bryce, kinda bored, find the Mossy Cave trail. It's a short hike, but will break up your day a little. Tight parking depending on the time of day, but beautiful none the less.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:44 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mayfieldcar View Post
I am currently planning a trip to see the Mighty 5 National Parks in Utah. I would appreciate suggestions for where to camp and the ‘must see places’. We can spend 1-2 weeks.
You really have to tell us what time of the year you plan it.
I was up there in Utah visiting Zion NP in Mid May and it was cool nights and it even snowed 2-3" up at Moab.
So I would suggest late early June and make reservations.
We stayed at Zion River Campground for 7 days and drove the car around to visit the other sites. The roads in the park have RV size limits and are narrow 2 lane sin some areas of Zion NP. Other area are wide but difficult to drive and park a large vehicle.
If you are old like me get the Gold NP pass or buy the annual pass for I think $80 which will save you a bunch. Entry fee I think was $30 for the vehicle each day.


I also move to Lake Powell and stayed at Wahweap RV but a better choice is the GoodSams in Page a few miles away. Cable TV, wifi pool etc.
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Old 09-25-2019, 07:43 PM   #20
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Thank you to everyone for your suggestions. We have planned our trip and used many of your ideas. Can’t wait!
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