My favorite place in Utah was decidedly Bryce. Arches NP was amazing and lived up to expectation. Camping up there was cool and helpful for hiking, but camping in the canyon that night before was more spectacular.
Canyonlands would only be worth returning to if I had more time to backpack in. I’d like to go back and see the Green River meet the Colorado [red] River. I saw a picture of it and it looks spectacular. Camping in the Canyonlands was nice and remote, though. Zion had too many crowds and wasn’t as spectacular to me (maybe because the weather was overcast).
(I did enjoy making tea to perk us up when we had that "five o'clock sinking feeling".)
But Bryce was fantastic. And I use the word in its literal, un-exaggerated sense. Bryce was unreal, and I’d recommend it most of all, next to Arches. Only pictures could make you believe the vast array of colored spires that make up this fairy kingdom of Bryce. Actually, pictures don’t even convey enough the bright color and splendor. It’s like mountains of colorful, dribbled rock.
We walked up that!!
Another surprising Utah moment - after hiking for several hours in the hot canyon of Bryce, we drove up into the mountaints...and found snow!!
This is the beautiful Cedar Breaks where we stopped between Bryce and Zion. It's like bryce but on a mountain with georgious mountain flowers in July.