Sand storm howls on Moab hiking trail
Published: June 11, 2012 09:57AM
Updated: June 4, 2012 08:26AM
Reporter Lindsay Whitehurst covers her nose and mouth with a bandanna during a dust storm May 26, 2012, at Arches National Park. Photo by Whitehurst/Salt Lake Tribune

Wind may be largely responsible for the breathtaking arches and scenery around Moab, but it sure doesn't make camping and hiking any easier.

We've righted many an upside-down tent and chased plenty of flying hats, but had never experienced quite the sustained "natural microdermabrasion" courtesy of wind-borne sand that Mother Nature offered this Memorial Day weekend.

White caps on the Colorado shut down a planned river rafting trip Saturday, so we decided to hit the hiking trail instead.

Even though I've lived in Utah four years and been to Arches several times, somehow I've never made it to Delicate Arch.

It wasn't the most comfortable hike, but it was incredible to hear the wind rolling in with a sound eerily like waves rolling into shore.

And the arch was, as advertised stark and awe-inspiring despite the gritty sky.

My new dirt "tan" may have washed off, but now I know what skydiving feels like —without ever leaving the ground.

— Lindsay Whitehurst

Twitter: @UtahHikes