We woke up at the crack of dawn to get to Arches National Park, just as the sun was peaking over the horizon. The low, warm light cascading upon the bright red and orange rock formations lit up the entire desert landscape. My dad and I found ourselves frantically running and driving from lookout to lookout to see as much beauty as we possibly could.
Our longest stop was at the end of the park loop where there was the double arch. Coming back from a small hike we met up with a park ranger who gave us a few trash bags to collect the potential trash with. We discussed the project and it was wonderfully reassuring to hear his enthusiasm and support for the idea.
Arches was one of the hottest places we visited so most of the trash we collected was water bottles. At least it was good to witness the fact that people were staying hydrated! As we drove to the next stop we found ourselves circling back to specific spots on multiple occasions in order to quickly grab discarded water bottles. It kind of felt like a treasure hunt. I had to constantly remind myself that I had to balance my time looking at the ground for trash and looking up to soak in the vast expanse of rock formations surrounding me.