Bears Ears National Monument still offers the peace and quiet that the neighboring National Parks have lost due to overcrowding. Bears Ears has been in the news in recent years because of rampant political corruption, so the reason why Bears Ears receives less traffic is not due to lack of exposure. It is the remote location of Bears Ears that lessens the traffic flow to this destination. Because there are no modern interstate highways nearby, many tourists who seek a convenient place for a getaway will opt for some place that takes less driving time to get to. The convenience of Interstate Highway 70 being so close the Canyonlands and Arches National Park is the reason why these two destinations are so overcrowded. This is why those who take the road less traveled will find the peaceful outdoor experience they are looking for in the Bears Ears region!
Because of what will eventually be proven to be an illegal public land sale by a corrupt political administration, the boundaries of Bears Ears National Monument are not well defined. In fact, because of political shading, finding information about Bears Ears is difficult to do. For example, when looking at the BLM website page, it looks more like an advertisement for a gas fracking company. Fortunately in recent months a bunch of good local people organized the Bears Ears National Monument Education Center, which actually serves as an official visitor welcome center. The Bears Ears Education Center is located at 567 West Main Street in Bluff, Utah. This new visitor center is where information, maps and native cultural education can be found. The local campgrounds are also listed in this place and oddly enough, many of the Bears Ears primitive camping areas are still free of charge.
The Comb Wash Campground is a cozy creekside BLM dispersed camping area that is easy to access from the paved road. The Comb Wash access road is a little more that 14 miles west of Blanding on State Road 95 and the signage is fairly easy to spot. All roads in this campground are composed of red clay dirt, which most automobiles can traverse on a dry day. If it rains, the roads will turn into impassible deep mud, so it is best to check the weather forecasts before opting for the Comb Wash Campground.
The setting at the Comb Wash Campsite simply could not be more picture perfect for pitching a tent and getting some rest after a long day of hiking! The towering red rock cliffs of the Comb Ridge offers a majestic view. The big Cottonwood Trees rustle in the breeze and they provide some cool shade. A creek flows through this campground during the snow melt season and frogs can be heard chirping all night long. When camping next to the creek, Mule Deer can be heard at night stealthily walking by the tent on the way to drink the stream water. The coyotes singing in the surrounding hills sound like music to the ears in this place. The campfire pits can be used when no fire restrictions are in place and this certainly is a great spot to roast marshmallows at night!
When waking up in this primitive style pack it in-pack it out campground, a visitor will find plenty of fun things to do nearby. The Mule Canyon Hiking Trails and the Butler Wash Ruins are located practically across the street, so this is a nice convenience. There are Jeep trails and hiking trails all over this area, so going to places where few others go is easy to do. Further west on State Road 95 is where Natural Bridges National Monument and Fry Canyon can be found. Fry Canyon is the number one canyoneering destination in southern Utah and there are a few rock climbing sites in this area too.
The rules and regulations for the Comb Wash Campground can be found at the BLM web page, the Kane Gulch Ranger Station or at the Bears Ears Education Center in Bluff. The campground rules are also posted on location and it does pay to take a look before settling in, because Bears Ears is a highly protected native sacred place that has thousands of ancient archaeological sites. Being respectful during a Bears Ears excursion is best to do, so future generations can enjoy this majestic place. As far as the camping goes, there is no better place to wake up in the morning, because there are so many great Bears Ears adventures that await just outside the tent!
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