Desert Solitaire

Edward Abbey, author of Desert Solitaire, spent six months in the Arches National Monument outside Moab, Utah, working as a temporary park ranger. He was the only ranger at the park and that was heaven on earth for Abbey; who enjoyed a very silent desert. A true lover of nature, Abbey writes about the all the names of the plants, animals, and the behavior of the native beasts. The behavior of visiting tourists does not make him happy, and he expresses strong concern about their ways.


He thinks, and I agree, that the ongoing development of national parks destroys the wilderness, and should be preserved. Everyone needs wilderness, whether they visit or not, but real wilderness—none of that Meadowland stuff. This land truly is a wild wilderness of the Wild Wild West. Abbey did all in his power to preserve this area in the name of nature and preservation. In this book, Abbey uses his time to become one with nature by understanding and learning this unique landscape. Abbey describes the main attractions at the park—the arches—and how nature creates them.


One adventure that Abbey had during his stay; Abbey goes native while near Havasu—Native American settlement in a canyon off the Grand Canyon—and nearly dies in a canyon. He also takes a rafting trip through Glen Canyon before the Glen Canyon Dam was completed, which would flood the area to create Lake Powell. The Glen Canyon trip brings out descriptions of the natural wonders that Lake Powell keeps secret.


I myself have never been to Arches National Park, but have heard many stories that come from this majestic desert landscape. It is a unique environment, and home to a lot of different wildlife. Sadly, the most destructive animals are the tourists; people like my dad who go on biking trips every year, or the man from 125 hours that cut off his own arm to survive. After reading this book and based on my own personal knowledge. There is no question that this is a dangerous and wild environment.

Here are some pictures from my fathers trip to Utah:

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