Scenic USA - Utah

Whitmore Arch

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Whitmore Arch - The Maze District, Canyonlands National Park, Utah

Photo by Dr. Rob Jones
Wilderness Vagabond - Trip Reports

   At night, they slept on bedrolls under the stars. During the day, they worked about 200 calves, branding, dehorning, castrating and vaccinating the herd. Also joining the group, Ben Johnson, a government inspector.
   It was 1940, and George Whitmore, even though partially blind, joins up with Ned Chaffin and few ranch hands on a round-up. One of Canyonlands' first sightseers, George Whitmore rode along on a cattle drive to what was known as Under the Ledge country. The 1930s and 40s Chaffin family ranch, located in southeastern Utah, snuggled up to the lower San Rafael River. Today, this area lies in a section of the Glen Canyon Recreation Area and the Maze district of Canyonlands National Park.
   During this adventure, George soaked up the magnificent scenery in Utah's Canyonlands. Through his monocular the sandstone canyon walls, colored in reds, oranges, yellows and purples, captured his heart. He was especially enthralled with a large natural arch. An everyday sight to the ranch hands, George's enthusiasm drew a christening of the arch ... from then on it was known as Whitmore Arch. Stories of George's trip and the Canyonlands' natural landmark continue to repay his family with special memories.

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