Newport Beach was a great place to start with a couple of days kicking back, the Grand Canyon needs no introduction but it really is a very impressive and humbling place to be. We didn't hike down into the canyon this time but did do a couple of hike along the rim.
The drive to Petrified Forest N.P. took us past Winslow Arizona where we stopped for lunch (didn't stand on the corner - too hot!). The Petrified Forest is an area where ancient trees have become fossilised and all the wood replaced by crystals, some very brightly coloured Canyon de Chelly is in Navaho land and is a dramatic canyon with some interesting rock formations and historic sites.
Moab is a favourite place and gives access to Canyon Lands N.P. and Arches N.P. We stayed for a few days and went hiking and also rented mountain bikes and rode the totally awesome Kokopelli Down Trail. We made it more entertaining by one of us (no names but it was the taller one of us) going over the handlebars about 1 mile into the 25 mile route, fortunately without serious injury, although there was a problem with the bike. We were assisted by a great couple, Troy & Heidi from Colorado, who we had been chatting to in the shuttle bus on the way to the trail start and completed the ride without any more problems. It was a fantastic trail and hopefully we will get to ride it again one day.
Zion is another favourite place and we hiked up Angels Landing again, it is always worth the effort.
As in previous trips to this area we drove back towards L.A., stayed overnight about 60 miles from the coast and then got up early and got to Santa Monica by 9am for a day on the beach before the long flight home in the evening.