Brian's Reefy Retirement Adventure
March 31 to April 7, 2018
By the spring of 2018, it had been a couple of years since we'd had a proper hiking trip to what I call the "desert southwest" -- the area of southwestern U.S. that includes the geological region known as the Colorado Plateau. To bring that drought to an end, I cobbled together a last-minute week-long outing at the beginning of April 2018, and sent out feelers for interest. Being so last-minute, only Jenn and Brian were able to make it.
Entirely by coincidence, the trip timing coincided with a very significant life event for Brian: retirement! In fact, when I proposed the trip's start day, he said "perfect! the day before we leave is my very last day of work!".
How fitting. As one of my longest-lasting outdoor trip companions, what better way to celebrate the retirement of one who loves exploring the outdoors.... than to go on an outdoor trip? Therefore, in honour of Brian's beginning of a life of leisure and freedom, I christened this trip Brian's Retirement Adventure!
In an attempt to maximize hiking time and minimize driving time, we focused our trip planning and outings on one relatively confined spot - the lands and areas in and around Capitol Reef, San Rafael Reef, and Circle Cliffs area of south-central Utah. Ah... another idea. Let's call the trip Brian's Reefy Retirement Adventure! (That'll get the casual TL;DR readers' heads scratching!)
Our leave date was the morning of March 30. We chose to fly into Salt Lake City this time (usually we fly to Vegas, but at the last minute the flights were slightly cheaper to SLC and the drive time to south central Utah was basically the same as from Las Vegas). We had an uneventful flight and then drive down to our overnight motel stay in a city called Price - uneventful except for Jenn's temporary loss of her day pack and carry-on luggage for about 30 minutes at the Salt Lake City airport. Fortunately some thoughtful and attentive staff reunited her with her stuff in short order.