Backpacking In Southern Utah

They say people who take vacations have lower stress, less risk of heart disease, a better outlook on life, and more motivation to achieve goals. So when I couldn’t sleep, one (of many) nights and felt anxious to getaway, I decided to book a very last minute backpacking trip with my sister, Dina. We had several options on the table that we eventually narrowed down to one (permits were sold out on the others), a 15+ mile secluded river trek in southern Utah. This was a nice change from our usual mountain adventures and refreshing to know that all we had to do was follow the river.

Sometimes you must disconnect, breathe and feel that freedom. Freedom for me means sleeping under the stars. So I flew from New Hampshire to Salt Lake City, Utah, got in the car en route south for our river backpacking trek. Here’s how it went. Cue the desert dwellin’…

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Moments before I took this above photo of Dina, we were rushing to get our packs ready at the trailhead with less than 2 hours left until sunset, and the urge to find the perfect camp spot along the river. As we were about to start, my camelbak water bladder overflowed into my backpack, semi-soaking my sleeping bag and other essentials. Thankfully we were still at the car so I got everything situated with hopes that the trek would be less dramatic…

Dodging the invasive  russion olive  trees to make our way to the river.

Dodging the invasive russion olive trees to make our way to the river.

We found the river…

We found the river…

We saw ancient  petroglyphs  along the way. Most of the glyphs symbolized the sun!

We saw ancient petroglyphs along the way. Most of the glyphs symbolized the sun!

The walls towering on either side of us for most of this trek left us in awe.

The walls towering on either side of us for most of this trek left us in awe.

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We found the perfect sandy spot to camp as the sun started to set.

We found the perfect sandy spot to camp as the sun started to set.

Check out  this post  to find out what happened to us this night at camp.

Check out this post to find out what happened to us this night at camp.

Thankfully the water was low with all the frequent river crossings we made. The ranger had told us it was waist deep the week before (and cold).

Thankfully the water was low with all the frequent river crossings we made. The ranger had told us it was waist deep the week before (and cold).

I love when mother nature makes you feel small.

I love when mother nature makes you feel small.

We found quicksand. I heard there may be quicksand and also read  this article  before the trip which freaked me out. Solution: I had Dina walk in front.

We found quicksand. I heard there may be quicksand and also read this article before the trip which freaked me out. Solution: I had Dina walk in front.

We saw 5 people total the entire 2 days. Complete solitude for the win.

We saw 5 people total the entire 2 days. Complete solitude for the win.

By the end of the trek our feet felt like someone took sandpaper to them, wet and raw but very well worth it.

By the end of the trek our feet felt like someone took sandpaper to them, wet and raw but very well worth it.

After we finished our backpacking trek, Dina and I drove down an abandoned air strip and branched off a few  BLM dirt roads  to find this gem of a spot with cliffside views in complete solitude. Looks magical right? That is until the sun set and lucid dreams, eerie silence, and malfunctioning headlamps kicked in. We definitely disturbed something that in turn left us terrified and uneasy all night long. The dreams are too disturbing to share here but they felt so real and the entire time in my dream i was trying to escape this exact location.   Hyperlite Backpack ,  OtterBox Tumbler ,  Eureka 3Person Tent

After we finished our backpacking trek, Dina and I drove down an abandoned air strip and branched off a few BLM dirt roads to find this gem of a spot with cliffside views in complete solitude. Looks magical right? That is until the sun set and lucid dreams, eerie silence, and malfunctioning headlamps kicked in. We definitely disturbed something that in turn left us terrified and uneasy all night long. The dreams are too disturbing to share here but they felt so real and the entire time in my dream i was trying to escape this exact location.

Hyperlite Backpack, OtterBox Tumbler, Eureka 3Person Tent

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And there you have it–a last minute river trek to effortlessly revive the soul! If you've been feeling that overwhelmed, stressful anxiety...book a getaway, find a local selfcare workshop (ive been doing this alot), get a massage - show yourself some much deserved lovin! Having something to look forward to is the best feeling!

If you’ve made it this far, thank you for stopping by! Comment below to share your thoughts, I love and appreciate hearing from my people!

Happy Trails,

Cassouki