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A Geologic Road Trip to Bears Ears National Monument

A Geologic Road Trip to Bears Ears National Monument

Words and photos: Jan Noirot. I answered without hesitation. “The 128 south of the I-70 to the 191 all the way south to the 163 to Monument Valley.” Surprised, they asked why. Why was it my favorite road in the country? There is little doubt in my mind why, but how to find the words?…

Bears Ears Nights

Bears Ears Nights

Words and Photos: Jan Noirot I shrug on my pack, feeling slightly awkward beneath its unbalanced weight due to the tripod that I have strapped on for my photo shoot. It is dark. I turn to the east and spot the dark silhouette of Sleeping Ute Mountain, his profile against the burnt umber of the…

Finding Archaeology in Bears Ears

Finding Archaeology in Bears Ears

Words and photos: Jan Noirot Rounding the corner in the bottom of this shallow and obscure canyon, I happen to look up from my plodding feet. Wow! I looked up at just the right time! There is a tiny little stone wall chinked by adobe. It has a door, sits about ten feet above the…

Base Camp to the Annual Bluff Balloon Festival

Base Camp to the Annual Bluff Balloon Festival

Every January, the annual Bluff Utah Balloon Festival brings the history and splendor of balloon flight to the Bears Ears National Monument region of Southeastern Utah. Air forcibly unfolds the massive fabric envelopes, expanding the balloons to the point where pilots and crew can begin heating the air inside with powerful burners. Before long, they…

Southeastern Utah and Bears Ears in Winter

Southeastern Utah and Bears Ears in Winter

Southeastern Utah is a land of solitude and wilderness. South of Moab—way south of Moab—the region’s distinctive Cedar Mesa sandstone folds, faults, and erodes into the monoclines, anticlines, canyons, and natural bridges of the expansive Bears Ears National Monument region. It is a vast and minimally populated landscape. It is, in a word, remote. Especially…