Those quaint little Colorado ski towns get wicked cold at night in October, and after I woke up teeth chattering and with horrendous ear pain in 21 degrees in Breckenridge for the second morning in a row, it suddenly occurred to me that I could do something about it – and probably SHOULD do something about it before my Montana head cold returned with full vengeance or my ears fell off my head: drive.

So I got back on the road and flew through the remainder of Colorado, and despite the quickness of that journey it was an intensely beautiful drive.

moab-sunset-9I reached Moab just in time for sunset.

A friendly local gave me some helpful info on accessing a state park just outside of town without having to pay the entrance fee, and I wound my way up a steep ridge to find stunning views of the desert as the sun pulled the blinds on the day.

It was warm.

The kiss of the last rays of that October day’s sunshine on my skin thawed the ice in my bones and felt like paradise.

Moab is a funky little desert town with hordes of mud-splattered bikers and dusty, massive-wheeled jeeps roaming its streets.

Located just a few miles from Arches National Park and about an hour from Canyonlands, it is a great “home base” to explore those two parks from…and would be worth a visit even if you’re not exploring the parks. Quirky, colorful, and so heavily frequented by travelers like me that the public restrooms have signs prohibiting showering/bathing/brushing teeth/etc in their sinks, I felt right at home 😉

I hiked about 100 miles of desert while in Utah and left with sun-browned skin, coated in multiple layers of sand and with hair that had locked into a gnarly single dread that took every ounce of my patience (…and oil&conditioner) to unravel.

Addendum to Hygiene 101 for Car/VanDwellers: Don’t forget to brush your hair.