Valley of Fire State Park

This park is only an hour away from Vegas so if you need a break from the Strip, it’s the perfect escape.

This was the perfect start to our trip. It’s a very unique place that’s definitely worth a visit.

When you’re almost there the whole road becomes surrounded by multicolored rocks and we felt like we had entered a new world.

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The terrain at this place kind of feels like you’re on Mars. And we were the only people around for miles. But there was ton of wildlife too. Which I imagine does not occur on Mars. I liked reading about all the animals we saw on the trail signs. I am a hardcore animal lover so I was already freaking out with excitement when we pulled up to the visitor center and a family of mountain goats greeted us. We also saw kangaroo rats and chuckwallas. Chuckwallas are huge monster lizards if you didn’t know.

One of my favorite parts about traveling is seeing the native animals 🙂

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First we did the Fire Wave trail.

The name was fitting since the temperature was creeping up by the minute. It was about 8:30 by the time we set out to hike ignoring the signs at the beginning of the trail not to hike in the heat of summer. We had 3 liters of water each every time we went on any kind of hike this trip since it was the middle of July in the desert.

The heat was NO JOKE. You know when you open the oven door an heat hits you in the face and your lungs struggle for air? Yep that was the outside. It felt like you were breathing inside of an oven. Dry heat. I am clearly from Florida and not used to anything dry.

Anyway, back to the hike. The Fire wave trail is gorgeous and we only passed 1 or 2 other people the whole time. Having a terrain like this to yourself almost feels like you’re doing something wrong. It was magical 🙂

 

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The Fire Wave trail is only 1.5 miles with beautiful views and mostly flat terrain so it was pretty easy. It would be perfect for families. Just bring enough water!

After 1.5 miles of walking through Mars, you’re at the beauty that the trail is named after. The Fire Wave. It’s named after the bigger and admittedly more magnificent Fire Wave in Arizona, but you need permits for that one which are notoriusly difficult to obtain.

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After that we did the White Domes trail. I actually liked this hike better because it was a little more challenging with more varied views. It’s still only a 1.25 mile loop though so a fairly easy hike!

Here’s what you experience when you start off. img_3631

The contrast of the rocks against the bright blue sky was breathtaking. I loved the views on this hike!

Not only did this hike have beautiful rock formations, but it also had a slot canyon. Being from Florida, Myles and I had never seen one before and we thought it was the coolest thing ever.

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I love traveling and adventuring as a couple because you always learn new things about each other. Myles and I have been dating for almost 6 years, but I learned something new abut him on this hike.

He quite literally loves holes in the wall. This hike had so many interesting holes in the wall. I never thought I would be intrigued by holes. But Myles was the most excited and we spent time exploring to find the best ones.

Here’s my boyfriend in one of his most beloved holes.

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Here’s another top contender.

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These kind of holes were actually everywhere and they are caused by a combination of natural erosion and wind. We discovered it’s also a frequently asked question on the park’s website so I thought I’d share 😉

I don’t know if everyone would be as entertained by the rock formations as we were, but we had a blast exploring this place. Unfortunately those were the only two hikes we had time for before we got on the road to Zion!

Enjoy if you decide to go 🙂
Sarah

 

 

Grand Circle Road Trip

My boyfriend and I are kind of obsessed with taking road trips. We even made a road trip out of going to my optometry school interviews.

Road trips are an inexpensive way to travel and they give you the freedom to fit in as much stuff in one day as you want and see as many places as time allows.

Our most recent road trip was probably the most epic (although all have been equally amazing in different ways 🙂 )

The Grand Circle Road trip is a famous one for good reason.

We flew from Miami to Las Vegas and then rented a car. Las Vegas is a popular starting point for this road trip but I know people start in Salt Lake City too. It just depends on your route. Vegas is the cheapest place to fly to though and why wouldn’t you want to spend a night or two in Vegas?!

Here’s our version of the Grand Circle Road trip:
Las Vegas –> Valley of Fire State Park –> Zion National Park –> Bryce Canyon National Park –> Kanab, Utah –> Page, Arizona –> Grand Canyon National Park –> Sedona, Arizona –> Las Vegas

We stayed in Airbnbs everywhere except for the last night we splurged on a nice hotel in Vegas. A bed has never felt so comfortable.

The one thing I would have done differently had I realized is rented a campervan! We would have saved so much money. You can rent cameprvans to sleep in, cook in, and drive all for the price less than the rental car we paid for. Luckily we aren’t making the same mistake on our next trip 😉

We saw some amazing things this trip, way too much for one post. So I think I’ll do a full post on some of the best things we did.

Here’s some highlights of our trip: