I’ve been fortunate enough to spend a few weeks in the deserts of Utah and Arizona each winter for the last few years. Moab, Utah has been one of my favorite destinations for a long time and still is, though the last few times I’ve been out that way it is overrun with off road enthusiasts. I don’t necessarily have a problem with this as long as they treat our public lands with the respect that they deserve, which I’m not sure that is always the case.

There are ghosts all around me.

I remember the first time I drove through Utah alone, I was in Capitol Reef National Park and just mesmerized by the seemingly endless possibilities for solitude. I love the depth of the landscapes, I feel like beyond every corner is a masterpiece and cresting every hill is a new adventure. I’ve always fantasized about just driving off randomly down every dirt road I see, and in Capitol Reef it has almost always turned out to be a good idea.

Desert trails


My last trip through I drove for hours and hours without seeing another set of headlights. I came dangerously close to hitting a giant bull on the open range. I ended up sleeping pulled off a dirt road in the middle of nowhere and getting woken up by a very nice National Park Ranger who I couldn’t help but notice didn’t take his hand off of his gun the entire time we talked. I love the shapes and sights of the desert at night almost more than any other landscape.


Please remember to reach out! I would love to hear from you. If there’s a spot you think I should check out, you’d like to spend an afternoon shooting photos or just want to chat, post a comment here or send me a message on Facebook. Oh, and please follow me on Twitter and Instagram @roadlyfe to stay in the loop! You can also email me at adam@roadlyfe.com.

All words and images © Adam Smith 2015.

Author Adam Smith

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