37. Road Canyon, Cedar Mesa, Utah (6 miles)Learn More
Picture Monument Valley without the mobs of European tourists. Giant red sandstone buttes, high-desert mesas and endless, sweeping valleys cut with thousands of canyon trails dominate this part of southern Utah. Plus, nobody’s there. Road Canyon, near the Kane Gulch BLM station, plunges down a winding, sandy river bottom jammed with cottonwood trees and 1,000-year-old Anasazi ruins. The Recapture Lodge, in the sleepy town of Bluff, makes an idyllic home base, with a library of topographical maps—helpful in the largely un-blazed Cedar Mesa area—and a hot tub for après-hike soaks. It’s also just down the road from the inestimable Cottonwood steakhouse.
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