Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Utah National Parks: November? or April?
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 > Utah National Parks: November? or April?

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SpeakEasy

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Posted: 09/25/19 01:56pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

On my bucket list is a trip to the national parks in Utah. We have some limitations on the time of year we can go there. What's the weather like in November? What about April? Is one of these months better than the other for any reason? If so, why. Which would you choose, and why?

Thanks! Thanks! Thanks!
-Speak


It's just Mrs. SpeakEasy and me now (empty-nesters). But we can choose from among 7 grandchildren to drag along with us!



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obgraham

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Posted: 09/25/19 02:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Weather is not predictable in those "shoulder" months. And, the temperatures can vary a whole lot between the high elevations like Bryce, and the lower ones like Monument Valley.
Every time we've been there in November, it's been pretty cold up at Bryce, Capitol Reef, etc. So for me, I'd choose April over November. Shouldn't be too hot at places like Arches and Moab then.

Bionic Man

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Posted: 09/25/19 04:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As a general rule, I would say that April will be warmer, but November will have less wind.

I go out fishing to Lake Powell in both of those months. I would say if you can do the first week of November, go for it. Otherwise I would target the last two weeks of April.


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ppine

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Posted: 09/25/19 05:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree. Just be ready for hot weather and snow.

dedmiston

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Posted: 09/25/19 06:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

One year we went to Bryce in March. It was 99% perfect until our last night when it quietly snowed 8”. We really had our hands full breaking camp and towing our fiver out of there.

But to quote The Hangover: “But did you die?” I was pretty uptight for the first part of the drive and my wife had to sleep on the couch because the snow atop the bedroom slide drained inside and melted on her side of the bed. Oopsies.


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Posted: 09/25/19 06:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

May.

swines

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Posted: 09/25/19 10:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

As has been stated, the weather is unpredictable. I've been in Southern Utah (Moab) in November and it's been high 60's to low 70's and sunny. I've also been there when it snowed 4-inches and the high for the day was 22F. Spring in the Southwest is often very windy. While that doesn't sound unpleasant, the wind can often be 22 MPH with gusts in the mid-30's to low 40 MPH all day. You really can't do much outdoors in those conditions.

I've traveled all over the western US over the past 40 years. My choice is early September. The days are sunny and warm, usually little to no wind, and the nights are pleasant. My other choice would be late May or early June.

Busskipper

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Posted: 09/26/19 07:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

SpeakEasy wrote:


On my bucket list is a trip to the national parks in Utah.


First off You will love it - How long can you take for this adventure? When you add all the other attraction in the southern part of Utah, State Parks and other stops, you will likely need a little more time than most think.


We have some limitations on the time of year we can go there.

IMHO it is smart to avoid the crowds - with Thanksgiving in the end of November you might need to keep it in mind and try to locate yourself in an enjoyable spot for TG - We have visited Utah in every season, but I can't remember ever doing Thanksgiving in Utah, Christmas - Winter Spring and Fall with just a few times in Summer, as it can be really hot[emoticon]

What's the weather like in November?

Fairly mild - cooler and a lot less crowded - some places even close up for the Winter - North Rim, which is often tied into Utah Trips, closes mid October and while access is still allowed they do not Plow the roads during Snow events so you need to be Weather Smart. November would be MY Choice and because you are looking for suggestions mine would be November.

What about April?

April would be Good as it is still cooler BUT it is starting to get crowded in some of the more popular spots - things have already started to fill up and I think you will likely run into more people and need more reservations at most places. My brother did April last year and said he needed reservations and that if he got a little elevation he still ran into snow outside Moab[emoticon] He was there early and scheduled around the Rallies that start in April.

Is one of these months better than the other for any reason?

IMHO - as I suggested November would be my Choice. We have had one of our best trip ever in Late December - Hiked to the top of Angels Landings in shorts and T shirts - then drove to Bryce for a Snow Storm and 10" of snow only to have the skies clear and get some unbelievable Photographs of the Sunset with the HooDoos covered in snow - OH How Lucky we were. Next day most of the snow evaporated and it was Beautiful. The main reason for the November recommendation is we love the cooler weather - so much easier to get out and hike then - fewer people, sorry but IMHO These Wild and Beautiful Places just are better with Fewer or NO people.

If so, why. Which would you choose, and why?

Think I pretty much answered these question above, I love these places in the winter - IMHO if you are Lucky you get a little Snow - Red Rocks look Great with a White contrast [emoticon]. Having done Utah in almost every month I can say it is always Beautiful - BUT - just more fun with fewer people, and in November there are fewer People.

Thanks! Thanks! Thanks!
-Speak


If/When you go be sure to seek out and include State Parks - and other spots of Interest - Page - Monument Valley - Lake Powell - Antelope Canyon - Goosenecks - Green River - RT 128 out of Moab - Dino NM - ................on and on.............................

Hope this helps


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Nutinelse2do

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Posted: 09/26/19 09:28am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

November. When we were working stiffs, our vacation every year to Utah was end of October into November

Perfect time in Utah. Leaves are changing, smaller crowds, rv spots open in most of the smaller cities. Bryce canyon with snow is magnificent. Chilly at night, warm usually during the day. Just be prepared for drastic weather changes and you will be good.

Better chance of snow at lower elevations in Spring than Fall in those areas


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obgraham

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Posted: 09/27/19 11:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Well there you have it! -- Everyone has their favorite times in Utah. The obvious advice is just to go, enjoy yourselves, and keep an eye on the weather in those shoulder months!

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