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2814
Utah/Arizona

The Best of Utah's Grand Circle of Parks and Monuments

Explore some of the most impressive geological formations in the world with experts as you discover Utah’s Grand Circle. Plus, sail Lake Powell and learn about Navajo culture.
Program No. 2814RJ
Length
11 days
Starts at
2,464
Utah/Arizona

The Best of Utah's Grand Circle of Parks and Monuments

Explore some of the most impressive geological formations in the world with experts as you discover Utah’s Grand Circle. Plus, sail Lake Powell and learn about Navajo culture.
Length
11 days
Starts at
2,464
Program No. 2814 RJ
Prefer to enroll or inquire by phone? 800-454-5768
climate
Plan ahead.
What kind of weather can you expect? Take a look!
itinerary
Please Note:
The itinerary for this program is different on certain dates.
Select your type of room
Price will update based on selection
Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.
Activity Level: Keep the Pace (19)
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 11 - Oct 21, 2021
Starting at
2,964
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Oct 18 - Oct 28, 2021
Starting at
2,964
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Oct 21 - Oct 31, 2021
Starting at
2,464
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Mar 24 - Apr 3, 2022
Starting at
2,699
Apr 14 - Apr 24, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Apr 21 - May 1, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Apr 28 - May 8, 2022
Starting at
2,699
May 5 - May 15, 2022
Starting at
2,699
May 9 - May 19, 2022
Starting at
2,699
May 23 - Jun 2, 2022
Starting at
2,699
Itinerary Note

This date visits the Grand Canyon's North Rim instead of Antelope Canyon.

May 26 - Jun 5, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Aug 29 - Sep 8, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Itinerary Note

This date visits the Grand Canyon's North Rim instead of Antelope Canyon.

Sep 5 - Sep 15, 2022
Starting at
2,749
Sep 19 - Sep 29, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Sep 26 - Oct 6, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Oct 3 - Oct 13, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Oct 6 - Oct 16, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Oct 10 - Oct 20, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Oct 20 - Oct 30, 2022
Starting at
3,199
Activity Level: Keep the Pace (19)
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 11 - Oct 21, 2021
Starting at
3,624
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Oct 18 - Oct 28, 2021
Starting at
3,624
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Oct 21 - Oct 31, 2021
Starting at
3,124
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Mar 24 - Apr 3, 2022
Starting at
3,439
Apr 14 - Apr 24, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Apr 21 - May 1, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Apr 28 - May 8, 2022
Starting at
3,439
May 5 - May 15, 2022
Starting at
3,439
May 9 - May 19, 2022
Starting at
3,439
May 23 - Jun 2, 2022
Starting at
3,439
Itinerary Note

This date visits the Grand Canyon's North Rim instead of Antelope Canyon.

May 26 - Jun 5, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Aug 29 - Sep 8, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Itinerary Note

This date visits the Grand Canyon's North Rim instead of Antelope Canyon.

Sep 5 - Sep 15, 2022
Starting at
3,599
Sep 19 - Sep 29, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Sep 26 - Oct 6, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Oct 3 - Oct 13, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Oct 6 - Oct 16, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Oct 10 - Oct 20, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Oct 20 - Oct 30, 2022
Starting at
3,939
Activity Level: On Your Feet (6)
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 14 - Oct 24, 2021
Starting at
2,464
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Apr 4 - Apr 14, 2022
Starting at
2,699
Apr 18 - Apr 28, 2022
Starting at
2,699
May 2 - May 12, 2022
Starting at
3,199
May 16 - May 26, 2022
Starting at
2,699
Sep 8 - Sep 18, 2022
Starting at
2,749
Activity Level: On Your Feet (6)
DATES & starting prices
PRICES
Oct 14 - Oct 24, 2021
Starting at
3,124
Itinerary Note

Due to low water levels at Lake Powell this program will take a Colorado river float trip instead of a Rainbow Bridge Lake Powell cruise.

Apr 4 - Apr 14, 2022
Starting at
3,439
Apr 18 - Apr 28, 2022
Starting at
3,439
May 2 - May 12, 2022
Starting at
3,939
May 16 - May 26, 2022
Starting at
3,439
Sep 8 - Sep 18, 2022
Starting at
3,599

At a Glance

With expert instruction, explore the world’s greatest concentration of national parks and monuments, known as the “Grand Circle” — Zion, Bryce Canyon, Capitol Reef, Arches and Canyonlands National Parks, as well as Dead Horse Point State Park, Grand Staircase-Escalante and Rainbow Bridge National Monuments, Lake Powell Reservoir and Monument Valley. Learn about the amazing geology up close, and uncover the story of the indigenous human history through a visit with the Navajo. Experience a corner of the world with landscapes and cultures unlike any other!
Activity Level
Varies by date
Varies by date. ON YOUR FEET – Walking 1 mile daily over varied terrain. KEEP THE PACE – Walking at least 1-2 miles daily over varied terrain with options for various fitness levels. Elevations up to 8,200 feet.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Discover five national parks and three national monuments, each exquisite and full of natural wonders.
  • Explore the breathtaking slot canyons and sandstone walls of Antelope Canyon or enjoy world-renowned vistas from the Grand Canyons North Rim during a short hike (varies by season).
  • Sail on Lake Powell past towering canyons to Rainbow Bridge National Monument, one of the world's largest known natural bridges.

General Notes

Select dates are designated for small groups and are limited to 24 participants or less. Transportation on this program is usually by full sized motorcoach, with about 40 participants.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Darrell McMahon
Darrell McMahon has worked in natural resource management for more than four decades and has extensive experience as a wildlife and habitat biologist, entomologist and botanist. Darrell has spent many years hiking thousands of miles through this wild landscape and has pinned his soul in the high plateaus and deep canyons of the desert southwest. Darrell has discovered many secret places in the desert southwest and loves to share these places and his knowledge with his best friends and Road Scholar participants.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Darrell McMahon
Darrell McMahon View biography
Darrell McMahon has worked in natural resource management for more than four decades and has extensive experience as a wildlife and habitat biologist, entomologist and botanist. Darrell has spent many years hiking thousands of miles through this wild landscape and has pinned his soul in the high plateaus and deep canyons of the desert southwest. Darrell has discovered many secret places in the desert southwest and loves to share these places and his knowledge with his best friends and Road Scholar participants.
Profile Image of Eldon Griffin
Eldon Griffin View biography
An avid hiker and photographer, Eldon Griffin is a naturalist who has taught continuing-education courses in geology, computers and photography. Growing up in the Southwest, he spent his days exploring the backcountry, finding fossils and dinosaur tracks. Eldon works as a freelance producer, videographer, photographer, writer, editor, instructor and consultant for various clients. Eldon’s photographs have been featured in numerous travel publications. He was a videographer for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. Eldon loves to share his knowledge on the unique geology.
Profile Image of Paula McMahon
Paula McMahon View biography
Paula McMahon has spent a lifetime camping, hiking, backpacking and canoeing in the mountains and deserts of the American West. She feels honored to share her love and passion for these special places with participants on Road Scholar programs, which she has been doing for almost a decade. Paula has also worked for 18 years as an educational paraprofessional with autistic and deaf children and is a sign language (ASL) interpreter.
Profile Image of Marcia Cooper
Marcia Cooper View biography
As a child growing up in Utah’s West Desert, Marcia Cooper quickly became familiar with coyotes, scorpions and rattlesnakes. She has spent most of her life in the slickrock country around Moab and Kanab. Marcia attended Dixie State College and the University of Utah and has been affiliated with Road Scholar for more than 20 years. Her enthusiasm for the outdoors is clear when she says "I do the same thing when I am working and when I am not working - hike!"
Profile Image of Sally Haggerty
Sally Haggerty View biography
Sally Haggerty graduated from San Diego State University with a bachelor’s degree in biology and received her master’s degree from Marygrove University in Detroit, Mich. She spent 22 years teaching in Oceanside Unified School District both on Camp Pendleton Marine Corp Base and at Martin Luther King Middle School. She now spends her time pursuing her passions of hiking the national parks of Utah, sailing the tall ships in San Diego and being with her amazing family.
Profile Image of Diane Griffin
Diane Griffin View biography
Diane Griffin’s unique talent is caring for and assisting others. She has been working in the travel industry for the last 12 years, and currently assists premium for Delta Airlines. She has also worked for JetBlue Airways and Utah Transit Authority, as well as in a surgical center assisting patients. A native Californian, Diane has lived in Utah for most of her life and enjoys hiking in southern Utah's red rock country. She has been a Group Leader for Dixie State University's Road Scholar since 2009.
Profile Image of Maggie Francke
Maggie Francke View biography
Maggie Francke has worked 43 years as a nurse during which time she also raised a family. The first half of her career was spent working in various hospital departments. The last half she worked in home health and hospice, and mainly hospice the last 10 years. Now her days are so filled, she wonders how she ever had the time to work so much. She spends her time hiking, biking, gardening and going to yoga five times per week.
Profile Image of Phil Moore
Phil Moore View biography
Phil Moore is currently an adjunct professor of Geology at Dixie State University. He has been involved with the Southern Utah University Geology Field Camp for several years. Phil taught Earth science for public schools in Hurricane, Utah for 28 years, he is also a semi-professional musician along with his wife Lori, who is also a Road Scholar Group Leader.
Profile Image of Donna Shouse
Donna Shouse View biography
Donna Shouse is a skilled customer service representative and a ‘Jill of many trades.’ She has traveled the friendly skies as a flight attendant, helped teach in a one-room schoolhouse in Alaska, and assisted the local Utah school district as a coach with Health and PE activities for elementary school age children.She enjoys exploring, camping, hiking and backpacking in the National Parks of Southern Utah and sharing her experiences with others.
Profile Image of Diana Hawks
Diana Hawks View biography
Diana Hawks was fortunate to be able to work in a career she loved, as an archaeologist in both the southwestern United States and Mesoamerica. She completed a bachelor’s and a master’s in archaeology at Brigham Young and PhD courses in anthropology and law. She has worked most extensively as an archaeologist in southern Utah and northern Arizona specializing in ceramic analysis of Ancestral Puebloan cultures. She enjoys teaching and working with the public on archaeological projects, especially archaeological inventories and rock art recording.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
Geology (specific)
by See list below
Ron Kay’s Guide to Zion National Park, Ron Kay, 1995 A complete guide of Zion National Park by one of Road Scholar’s own instructors. Shadows of Time: The Geology of Bryce Canyon National Park, Frank Decourten, 1994 A book with breathtaking photographs, well written on the geology of Bryce Canyon N. P. and surrounding high plateaus. Water, Rock, & Time: The Geologic Story of Zion National Park, Robert Eves, 2005. This book is so nice you may want to leave it on the coffee table. Zion National Park: Towers of Stone; by J.L. Crawford; Zion Natural History Association, Springdale, Utah, Fourth Edition 2002. Carving Grand Canyon, Wayne Ranney. 2005. A synopsis of ideas and theories that geologists have developed over time about the carving of the Grand Canyon. This story is told in an engaging style that non-scientists will find inviting. Canyonlands Country, Donald Baars, 1993. Geology of Canyonlands and Arches National Parks.
Books about History
by See list below
Heart of the Desert Wild, Greer Chesher, 2000. Award winning book about the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument (GSENM). It covers a variety of topics from geology to history. The photography and design of this book are outstanding and remains the definitive book on the GSENM. A Roadside History of Utah, Cynthia L. Bennett. 1999. Compelling stories of Utah’s exceptional people. Utah’s History, Richard D. Poll. 1989. A more in-depth and statewide focus on history. Hole-in-the-Rock, David E. Miller, 1995. If you want to learn more about one of the epic pioneer journeys in American History this is the book. It is area related and is a good read for those interested in history. Highway 12, Christian Probasco. 2005. Popular with travelers along Highway 12. It features a unique look at the history, people and their perspectives on this very special corridor. Outlaw Tales of Utah, Michael Rutter, 2002. True stores of Utah’s most famous robbers, rustlers and bandits.
Wildflowers Of The Desert Southwest
by Meg Quinn
Field guide to 80 of the most common flowers of the Chihuahuan, Mojave and Sonoran deserts.
Geology
by See list below
Geology – a Golden Guide, by Frank H.T. Rhodes, 1991, St. Martin’s Press, N.Y. Geology of Utah’s Parks and Monuments, Sprinkel et. al. Utah Geological Association, 2000. Contains geology papers on 25 parks and monuments of Utah (644 pages). Written for a geologist. Utah‘s Spectacular Geology, Lehi Hintze, 2005 The geologic story of Utah’s landscapes and how they came to be. A Traveler's Guide to the Geology of the Colorado Plateau, Don Baars, 2002. A comprehensive guide to the Colorado Plateau. The Practical Geologist, Dougal Dixon, Raymond Bernor, 1992 This book is a great introductory guide to the basics of geology. Great diagrams, pictures and is well written. Geology Underfoot in Southern Utah, R. Orndorff, R. Wieder, D. Futey, 2006 A hands on book about getting out among the rocks. Explores 33 sites in Southern Utah. Tells of ancient eruptions, deserts, seas, swamps and movements of massive rock units over eons. Beyond the Visible Landscape, W. Kenneth Hamblin, 2004. A unique book that consists of a series of panoramic photographs taken from the air. Focuses on the fundamental features of the landscape. Contains excellent diagrams & descriptions of the geology in the photographs.
General Reference
by See list below
A Naturalists Guide to the Canyon Country, David B. Williams. 2000. A wonderful Falcon Guide that uses fine artwork and pictures to introduce the geology, flora, fauna and history of the Canyon Country. Four Corners: History, Land and People of the Desert Southwest, Kenneth A. Brown, 1996. Great information about the region. Desert Solitaire, Edward Abbey. 1968. A season in the wilderness is a celebration of the beauty of living in a harsh and hostile land. Edward Abbey was a seasonal Park ranger in Arches National Monument. Cadillac Desert, Marc Reisner. 1986. The story of the American West is the story of a relentless quest for a precious resource: water. The definitive work on the West’s water crisis.





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