There are two kinds of people: Vegas people, and the rest of us.
While hordes of skiers descend upon the legendary powder-packed slopes of Park City and Deer Valley in northern Utah, the otherworldly, merely snow-dusted desert geology of the southern half of the state—with its towering hoodoos, massive sandstone formations, and deep slot canyons—remains largely overlooked by tourists.
No longer just for bohemian festivalgoers and sun-seeking snowbirds, the Coachella Valley is quickly evolving into a luxurious playground for adventurous couples.
Having grown up in the southwest, I feel a deep affinity for all desert landscapes. The otherworldly terrain of southern Utah is particularly close to my heart. I have spent many winter holidays over the last 15 years hiking in Zion and Bryce Canyon national parks, as the days are usually sunny and the cold is never too bone-shattering.
Right now, two brave climbers are in the middle of attempting to free-climb the world's steepest stretch of granite, half a mile up, in the peaks of Yosemite National Park. Professional climbers Kevin Jorgeson and Tommy Caldwell began their journey on December 27 and are the first to try to reach the summit of El Capitan's Dawn Wall in Yosemite using nothing but their hands and feet. If the two succeed to the top, they will make history by being the first to do so without any other tools but their bodies.
After decades of choosing between a tedious six-hour drive and the mayhem that is LAX, San Francisco residents that yearn for some Los Angeles sun now have a more efficient third option.
Even in the rain, Big Sur is a remarkable place to explore. We holed up here recently on a particularly showery weekend, which didn’t stop us from exploring beaches and redwoods or foraging for high gastronomy. (It also didn’t stop us from bunkering in our room, fireplace ablaze, for cozy afternoons).