This 2-day Canyonlands backpacking tour begins in downtown Moab, where you meet your professional backcountry guide who will help you navigate the Maze, and board a comfortable, 4-wheel drive vehicle for the drive out into the wilderness.
As you leave the streets of Moab behind, you’ll cross the rugged Green River Desert towards a sea of red rock canyons, where photographers will get the first glimpse of the landscape that’s dotted with spires and fins. An hour later, as you approach the famous Horseshoe Canyon, the scenery only gets more dramatic and the walls more vertical and sheer, as the rocky beauty of Canyonlands National Park emerges in all its glory.
Stretch your legs on a challenging hike through the narrow, red rock slot canyons, where your guide will point out enormous rock drawings that are believed to be 6, 000 years old. This trails drops 650 feet (198 meters) over the course of 3.5 miles (5.6km), but since the rock drawings are considered some of the finest in North America, the hike is more than worth the effort that’s put into reaching the site.
Once you’ve successfully climbed out of Horseshoe Canyon, follow your guide above Millard Canyon to set up camp for the night, where aside from the views of Canyonlands National Park, you’ll enjoy a dinner cooked cowboy-style with iron pots on hot coals, before settling in beneath a blanket of stars.
The next morning, when you first open your eyes, drink in the moment of waking in one of the most beautiful places in America, where the enveloping silence and rugged landscape create an inspiring start to the day. Beat the chill with a cup of hot coffee and a hearty, tasty breakfast, and prepare to explore the High Spur Canyon: a favorite of landscape photographers.
Though the hike is challenging and has a couple of obstacles it’s easily conquered as a group, and when you arrive at the section known as 'The Circle' with its 1,200-foot (366-meter) loop of slot canyons, photographers will want to reach for the cameras to capture the patterns in the rocks. After hiking for three hours you’ll return to your vehicle, and begin the drive across a sand-flecked desert that’s home to wild donkeys. By evening, your Moab backpacking tour will finish back downtown.