Clear sunshine, cool evenings, impossibly vibrant wildflowers, and wide open national parks. There's no better time to get away from it all and escape to the desert than the springtime. Most national park visitors come during the hotter summer months, but locals know that spring is the best time to visit The Mighty 5®. Streams and rivers are full and sparkling from the winter snowmelt, the crisp mornings give way to warm afternoons, and after dark, the streak of the Milky Way across the sky is so bright it seems you could walk it like a trail. Nowhere else in the world but in Utah can your springtime escape encompass five national parks within such close proximity to one another.
Most Inspiring Springtime Escapes in The Mighty 5®
Stroll to Emerald Pools
Ease into the season with a gentle three-mile stroll to the Emerald Pools, which are especially beautiful in the springtime. The cold waterfalls thunder after spring rainstorms and the cottonwoods, willows and hanging maidenhair ferns have just unfurled their verdant leaves.
Hike the Rim Trail
Many say that spring is the loveliest time to visit Bryce Canyon, when snow often still caps the redrock hoodoos, creating a magical backdrop for spring wildflowers. Cooler temperatures mean that sunny hikes along the canyon's rim are comfortable and pleasant. The 5.5-mile Rim Trail hike takes you from the aptly named Fairyland, past hoodoos and redrock fins to majestic Bryce Point.
Stargaze from Cathedral Valley
Follow a 60-mile scenic drive through this remote valley where the desert hillsides are painted a rainbow of colors. Watch the sun sink beneath the towering Temples of the Sun and Moon rock formations, then get ready to see the stars as you've never seen them before.
Bike the Island in the Sky
The Island in the Sky Mesa rests on sheer sandstone cliffs over 1,000 feet above the river valley below. While many hard-core bikers enjoy the area's multiday White Rim Trail ride, just as scenic are single day trips bicycling the blacktop, as well as the 4WD dirt roads that wind along the mesa's top, offering staggering views in every direction. If your legs are feeling strong, try the Island in The Sky half-century out-and-back ride from Dead Horse Point State Park through the Island in the Sky.
Hike to Delicate Arch
The short 1.5-mile hike to this justifiably famous icon can be busy in the summer months. But in the springtime—especially early morning or at sunset (bring a headlamp for the hike down!)—you can find silence and solitude at this impossibly thin standalone arch, and the sandstone bowl that surrounds it.