Since returning from RT15 we’ve had LOTS of people asking about how we planned the trip. Since it was such a long process, with so many details to work out I generally don’t have a very good answer. Therefore, I’m going to do my best to document planning for RT 16 as I go. As Molly previously posted a few weeks ago the process began with looking at maps and discussing where we want to go. We had a general idea that we wanted to focus more extensively on Colorado and Utah. There is so much to see in those two states that we could probably spend the rest of our lifetimes exploring their canyons and mountains.
We also knew that we needed to return to Rocky Mountain NP, Canyonlands, NP, and Bryce Canyon. The first two because of their uncrowded, beautiful, and extensive trails and possibilities and Bryce for its unique beauty. We added the Four Corners region to the list because of it’s awesome human ruins which we’d love to see more of. I also added an objective of climbing our first 14er.
Next we set a general route – counterclockwise for a change this time. There was still quite a bit of snow in the mountains in early June this year so pushing RMNP to the end of the trip provides a little insurance against that. It’ll also get us to the desert a bit sooner (although it’ll still be really hot by mid-June). Using roadtrippers.com and Google Maps I pieced together a rough itinerary.
That brings you to where I’m at now, by far the most difficult part of the process. For this trip we want to find very specific hikes for each stop. I’ve been scouring a multitude of hiking resources: everytrail, alltrails, summitpost, and many others to find the trails that match what we’re looking for. These hikes then need to be meshed with our location in a way that allows us to be positioned for them (mostly) first thing in the morning.