Utah Camping: Canyonlands
In Canyonlands, visitors find it all. The countryside offers up everything from desert to mountains, narrow slot canyons, wide vistas, lengthy Lake Powell, and all things in between. Part of the geologic region known as the Colorado Plateau, it’s a paradise for photographers and other artists; in fact, it’s a paradise of sorts for all who come to visit.
Grand and San Juan Counties make up Canyonlands, one of the largest of Utah’s camping regions. Scattered over 11,414 square miles, the region is bordered on the west by the Green River, and on the east and south by the respective states of Colorado and Arizona.
Forty-five public campgrounds feature sites ranging from the lofty realms of the LaSal and Abajo Mountains, to the desert oasis at Sand Island (it’s located on the banks of the San Juan River), to the natural-bridge-blessed kingdom of Natural Bridges National Monument. In addition, there are wonderful views from Dead Horse Point State Park, a maze of hiking trails and a bevy of climbing routes in and near both Canyonlands and Arches national parks, and the water-sports-oriented waters of Lake Powell and the Colorado River. Ancient Indian ruins are common in this part of the country, with Hovenweep National Monument and Natural Bridges National Monument particularly nice spots from which to easily explore them.