Family Trip to Colorado - Day 1

The family and I are taking a much-needed trip to southwestern Colorado to visit Mesa Verde National Park, the San Juan Mountains, and Ouray. We’ll be making a few other stops along the way, but those locations are foremost in our minds as we pack the back of the FJ Cruiser with our stuff and head out to Moab, Utah.


Moab is the first stop on the trip. With Cortez, Colorado being about six or so hours from our house, Moab, at four hours, is a great way to break up the drive. We prefer laid-back trips, not rushing to get from place to place, so the short drive to Moab will be excellent on the first day.

The drive to Moab is uneventful, other than a bit of an issue at work I had to deal with from the side of the road outside Price, Utah. I’m grateful for iPhones and LTE.

We arrive at Moab, check into the hotel, and quickly pack our backpacks for a hike to Delicate Arch. Heidi and the kids have never been there and it’s been a few years since I have as well (I took this picture while there last time), so I’m excited to make the hike. It’ll be great to stretch the legs after the four hour drive.

There’s only one problem: A very ominous thunderstorm is working its way to us from the southwest. Is it heading more north or east? It’s hard to tell, but if it’s heading north, it’ll hit us; east, and it’ll just pass us. We drive to the trailhead and figure it looks to be heading more east, toward the La Sal Mountains, so we start the hike.

Due to the high winds and threatening skies, there aren’t too many hikers out (well, it’s also about 6:00 PM - dinner time), making the hike more enjoyable (I detest crowds). We make the hike to Delicate Arch with plenty of “potty stops” along the way for the seven-year old. Heidi and I suspect he’s just making excuses to pee outdoors, as usual.

When we finally come around the bend and see Delicate Arch, we are buffeted by high winds, blowing sand in our eyes and making me a bit nervous of the young Hatchlings around the nearby cliffs. We pose for some photos, hang around and take in the views, and then head back.

Family and wind in front of Delicate Arch

Delicate Arch in high wind and cloudy skies

If you ever travel and stay in hotels with kids, you know what came next: Swimming in the hotel swimming pool.

Good day.