In July, Ron and Leigh Martel returned to Leigh’s hometown of Preston, Idaho for a visit with family and friends. Leigh left home right after high school and used to return with Ron for a visit every summer. But after her parents passed away, they had not been back for eight years. They stayed at a B&B that had been converted from the church-house Leigh used to attend.
On the way home, they took a week to see each of the five National Parks in the state of Utah: Canyonlands, Arches, Capitol Reef, Bryce and Zion.
“Although we had seen Zion and Bryce years ago, it was wonderful to return as well as to discover the other parks, which are equally spectacular but far less crowded,” says Ron.
At Arches National Park, they saw dramatic natural arches. They then visited Canyonlands National Park, similar to the Grand Canyon but on a smaller scale.
After a day in each place, they drove west to Capitol Reef National Park, which features dramatic drives through erosion-carved rock. They stayed at a traditional style lodge on the Red River Ranch.
The next day, they drove south to Bryce Canyon National Park, staying at the Bryce Canyon Lodge. They rode horses to the bottom of the canyon amongst the spires and hoodoos.
On their last day, they drove through Zion, but it was so crowded they decided to drive home and return another day to see it closer.