I am taking my first big trip with a very good friend in March. We have plans to meet in Denver, then drive somewhere to backpack for about a week. Our original plan was Moab, but we are also wondering what other options we have. New Mexico? Utah? Colorado? etc.
Loc: Portland, OR
Because the highest snowpack in western mountains typically occurs in mid-to-late March, wherever you go needs to be low elevation enough to not be covered by snow, or alternately you had better be equipped to hike and camp on snow. On the other hand, lower elevation hard-rock desert has more available water in March than most other months, so it becomes more of a possibility.
Utah is a great Idea and march is perfect. Moab isnt the best place for backpacking because of all the mtn bikers. Your closest bet would be Canyonlands. The needles district is really pretty. You have so many options it ridiculous. Trachyte creek area is cool, Robbers Roost area when Arron Ralston cut his arm off. My favorite area is Canyons of the Escalante. Check out Death hollow. Its a good 3 day trip and extremely impressive. If you are looking for long there are all kinds of multiday loops in the in the Escalante. Stay out of Zion. Its more of a day hiking area. The Barracks which is near Zion is pretty incredible too. Utah is limitless. Depending on where you go in Southern Utah the best flight options are Grand Junction Co, Flagstaff, Las Vegas. Cedar city and St George. SLC is a bit of a haul from southern utah. BTW Toas is in NM, Not AZ
If you decide on going to utah private message me. I can give you some good idea. I have spend more time than most in Southern utah and know it like the back of my hand. I have maps already made and gps coordinates and some awesome loops