A 10 day itinerary and packing list for road tripping the Four Corner States
It’s the first day of summer and I am currently in the middle of a road trip/camping adventure to New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado! Brandy and I, along with one of my best friends, Kacie, and her dog, Lily, (who debuted in the Colorado post) are doing a road trip to the Four Corner States and exploring a bunch of national parks, canyons, arches, rivers and dog parks.
Our itinerary includes the Grand Canyon, Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon and Arches National Park, and that doesn’t even include anything we are going to do in Colorado. It is going to be an epic whirlwind of a trip!! This post is basically an overview of what we will be seeing, everything we packed for the trip, and our tentative itinerary. Later on, I will make individual posts for each state we explore and adventure through.
So, a few things to note about me: I am decently well-traveled, so I have almost perfected my packing skillz; I am a pretty minimalist person; I try to use products with ingredients that I can find in nature; I use essential oils for almost everything; and I have never done a trip like this ever before.
Where we are headed
Our first stop is Angel Fire, New Mexico. From Angel Fire, we will head to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and camp for two days where we will watch a sunrise over the rim, do multiple hikes and eat plenty of s’mores.
After the Grand Canyon, we are planning on seeing a sunrise over Horseshoe Bend, and later we have a tour scheduled at Antelope Canyon. After leaving Arizona we will head north to Zion National Park and hopefully spend at least 2 nights there while visiting other various arches, canyons and forests in the Utah area.
When we leave Utah, we are headed to Colorado for about 4 days where we will hike, camp, eat, drink, and smoke our way through Denver and a few surrounding towns. I really want to go back to Colorado Springs and see Seven Falls, Manitou Incline, and Garden of the Gods.
I can confidently say that I am well traveled and good at packing for trips all over the globe. I used to be seriously awful and overpack like crazy, but now that I have minimized all my possessions in general, it is much easier. The less shit you have, the less shit you have to pack. But, as I stated above, I have never done a trip like this before, so I slightly overpacked a few “what if we need this” items.
Packing cubes: THESE ARE REVOLUTIONARY! I cannot believe I went 23 years of traveling without these babies… I thrive when I am organized, and I always felt so stressed out when my clothes become a mess of a pile in my suitcase just a few days after travel. I was able to have separate cubes for all of my clothes. One cube for t-shirts and tanks, one for shorts and leggings, one for underwear and bras, one for socks, and one for civilian clothes once we get to Denver. Shout out to Kristen for showing me the wonderfulness of packing cubes ♥
eBags Motherload Weekender: eBags is one of my favorite brands for luggage in general. They have a lifetime guarantee and I have utilized their warranty multiple times with my Motherload Wheeled Duffel, which is basically this backpack, but with wheels and slightly larger. A wonderful thing about this backpack is that it opens like a traditional suitcase, so packing is super easy. I use this suitcase for camping and hiking along with international airline travel and I have loved it for both.
Multiple cameras: I love photography and I always have a camera on me. On this trip, I have 4 with me. I have this legit Minolta film camera with B&W film for some epic canyon shots. I also have my Canon EOS Rebel (which took these pictures), a waterproof Olympus if we decide to trek through a stream or river, and Kacie has a GoPro. So basically we are guaranteed to get some awesome shots.
Jackery portable charger: This baby is a life saver for my phone that dies wayyy too fast. When fully charged, it can recharge a phone 3 times, so this is awesome for camping or trips where there is not a guarantee of where your next outlet will come from. I have also made many friends in airports with this awesome little dude.
ENO hammock and slap straps: If I could sleep in a hammock every night for the rest of my life I would choose an ENO. I am so comfy, wake up with ZERO back pain, and it is super cozy, even during colder temperatures. And even Brandy loves hanging.
And here is a shot of most everything, plus Brandy laying right on top of my stuff just to make sure we did not leave her behind.
Everything we packed (I think)
Clothes (all in separate packing cubes): 4 pairs shorts, 3 pairs spandex, 10 tank tops, 3 t-shirts, 1 flannel (thanks Chelsea), 2 pairs leggings, 1 pair sweats, 4 sports bras, 1 real bra, 3 pair wool socks, 3 pair bamboo socks, 15 pair underwear, 1 bikini, dirty clothes bag, and just in case I get cold: ski pants, NorthFace jacket and beanie. We also have ponchos just in case of rain.
Shoes: hiking boots, tennis shoes, shower shoes, sandals. along with my ankle brace, because I’m known to hurt myself…
Bathroom (everything in small containers): face wash, moisturizer, chapstick, toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, coconut oil, razor with extra blade, deodorant, contacts, sunscreen, Lavaderm after-sun spray, quick dry towels, headband, brush and hair ties, bug spray, Diva cup, toilet paper, baby wipes, Thieves hand soap, Thieves spray, tweezers, eyeglasses.
Essential oils (I only use and recommend Young Living EOs): lavender, peppermint, deep relief, copiaba, frankincense, stress away, lemon, thieves, panaway, tea tree, citronella, purification, valor and peace & calming.
Technology: Jockey portable charger, Bose noise canceling headphones, dive watch, compass, GPS for car, Macbook, car diffuser for oils, inverter for charging camera batteries and Macbook.
Cameras: Canon EOS Rebel, Minolta film camera, Sony underwater camera. Kacie has her boyfriend’s GoPro. Along with respectable chargers, memory cards, lenses and a tripod.
Camping: Light My Fire cooking and utensil set, Coleman cooking stove with pots, pans and propane. Duck tape, walking sticks, first aid kit, headlamp, lantern, and tent. Tarps, stakes and hammer, sleeping bag, pillow, ENO hammock with straps, blankets and towels. Cooler with wheels, s’mores rod, plates, bowls, napkins, forks, spoons, and paring knife. Clothes line with clothes pins, sleeping pads, shovel, foldable chairs, pliers and trash bags. Zip lock bags, aluminum foil, dust pan, Thieves cleaner for food, Swiss Army knife, travel yoga mat, cooler/stool/chair backpack, emergency poncho, matches and lighters.
Hiking: plenty of trail mix and yummy snacks, cooling rags, water bottles, collapsible water dish for dogs, first aid kit, camelback, fanny pack, chapstick, scissors, bug spray, water bottles, waterproof camera.
Dogs: dog backpacks, dog booties, poop bags, food, water and food bowls, sleeping pad, brush, tick and flea preventative care, cooling rag, favorite toys (2), treats, vaccination records, service animal records, dog towels, 6 foot waist leash, regular leash and leash for campsite.
This is not an exhaustive list by all means, but it covers almost everything we managed to cram into my Honda Accord along with two humans and two dogs. Also, I do have a much more organized and itemized, excel-spreadsheet-type-packing list I can share if anyone wants it; just leave a comment with your email!
This is the part of camping that we are least prepared for, so this is going to be the most bullshitted aspect of our trip. Wish us luck!! For the most part we plan on having fruit and breakfast tacos in the morning at the campsites. Breakfast tacos can be made ahead of time and then wrapped in aluminum foil for easy reheating. We made ours with eggs, cheese and bacon and then later we will add toppings like salsa or avocado slides. We also plan on having bacon and cookie butter pancakes one or two of the mornings, because it is the best camping meal ever. For lunch, we will be out hiking during most lunch times, so our lunches will consist mainly of hard salamis, crackers and cheeses, dried fruit, jerky and trail mix. For dinners we plan on making chicken fajitas two nights, a fruit chili pie one night, and assorted pastas and dining out on dog friendly patios. And with the amount of road trip friendly snacks we have, I can guarantee we will not starve.
We are on the way towards an awesome adventure! Stay tuned for more posts.
Onward and upward,