>    >  May

Backpacking the Ashdown Gorge via Rattlesnake Creek

The Ashdown Gorge is located on the boundary line of Cedar Breaks National Monument, and lies within the Ashdown Gorge Wilderness near Cedar City, Utah. The trail starts by following the Rattlesnake Creek Trail at 10,500 ft, and eventually drops into the gorge descending a total of 4,100 ft. This route is best done point-to-point, with 1 over night backpacking. You can definitely do this in one day, but to really experience the canyon and take your time, backpacking this trail is perfect.

Hiking from Heugh's Canyon to Olympus Cove, Bonneville Shoreline Trail, Hiking in Utah with Dogs
 Heugh's Canyon to Olympus Cove follows one of the newest sections of the Bonneville Shoreline Trail (BST). It's a 5 mile point-to-point trail great for dogs and trail runs. There are a few sections with sheer drop offs, and for that reason, I don't recommend little kids. The views along this route offer amazing views of the SLC valley, as well as Mt. Olympus high above to the East. There is only a handful of shady spots and no water source, so you'll definitley want to start early in the morning (or late evening) to beat the heat. There are several nice rocky outcroppings that would be perfect to watch sunset from as well. This route requires a car shuttle - one at each trailhead if you plan to hike this point-to-point. 

Hiking the Butch Cassidy Trail, Red Canyon near Bryce Canyon National Park

Red Canyon is located off HWY 12 near Bryce Canyon National Park, which compared to it's famous neighbor, sees half the visitors. And for good reason - there's no national park name attached it, and many people do not realize how many trails are in the canyon. In particular, the Cassidy Trail, is one of the best in the canyon. No fees, dog friendly, shade, and amazing views all located in the Dixie National Forest - does it get any better?

Hiking Pine Creek (The Box Trail) in Escalante, Utah, Hiking in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, Hiking in Utah with Dogs

Pine Creek Canyon is a hidden gem in the Escalante area - a pristine creek, tall canyon walls, half mountain-half desert, no cows, all downhill, plenty of shade, and towering Ponderosa trees. Located in the Box-Death Hollow Wilderness, this canyon is also known as "The Box", which is funny since it's not really a box canyon but steep-walled, open-ended drainage carved by Pine Creek millions of years ago.

Bowington Arch Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument (GSENM), Hiking with Dogs in Utah

Bowington Arch is located in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument (GSENM) near the town of Escalante, UT. It's an easy hike that crosses the Escalante River several times, and therefore it's important to wear water shoes. You will also hike through sandy sections with sage brush and cottonwood trees. Bowington Arch is dog-friendly and (possibly) kid friendly. There are no obstacles of any kind except for one small scramble the the dogs can easily do, and some younger kids might need help with. I say possibly kid friendly since this trail is close to 8 miles round trip, but is completely flat the whole way. Make sure you have a map of the area downloaded on your phone or GPS, as there is no sign for where to turn off for the arch. I highly recommend the Gaia GPS app.

Backpacking the Escalante River Trail, Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument

The Escalante River Trail is a popular backpacking point-to-point route near the town of Escalante, Utah and within Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument (GSENM). The entire length of the Escalante River is 87 miles, but this route allows you to see 15 miles of it overnight one night of backpacking. Much of the way, your path will be the river itself. On a blue sky, warm & sunny day, splashing through the stream along tall Navajo sandstone walls feels amazing. Around every corner is something new and exciting to look at. The Escalante Natural Bridge. An arch. Petroglyphs & pictographs. Ruins. You name it, it has it.