Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Zion National Park

We spent a couple of days exploring Zion National Park.  It is stunningly beautiful.  I only wish I had done a better job of planning our timing to the park.  We were there over the Memorial Day weekend and it was insanely crowded (worse crowds than we've ever experienced at Disney World).  Really, really crazy crowded.  

On Friday, we went to the Northern section of the park, drove along the scenic rode, had a picnic, and did some hiking.  It was lovely and gorgeous and lots of fun.

On Saturday, we got up bright and early and went to the Southern side of the park (the one with all of the popular sights and hikes).  I already knew that we weren't going to be able to hike The Narrows (a river hike), as the river was gushing from all of the melted snowfall and was closed for hiking, swimming, or kayaking (without a special permit - we did see a group of kayakers who had special permission and permits to kayak the rapids).  But I was really looking forward to hiking Angel's Landing.  We had a plan where we would all hike up to Scout's Lookout, and then Randy and Brady would turn back while Dawson and I continued on to the tippy top of Angel's Landing.  When we arrived at the park at 7:00 am, the parking lot was already full and there was a winding line waiting for the shuttle bus.  We waiting about 20 minutes for our shuttle ride, and when we got out at the Angel's Landing trailhead, there was a very long line of people waiting to be allowed onto the trailhead (the park rangers were only letting in a few hikers at a time).  We went to the end of the line, where a ranger told us that it would be about a 3 hour wait.  A three hour wait just to start hiking!!  I've never experienced such a thing.  So we opted to skip the wait and the big hike, and went off to explore other areas of the park.  We hiked to Weeping Rock, along the River Trail, and to Lower Emerald Pool.  It was all very pretty, but also crowded.  So . . . . we'll have to return to Zion at a better time of year and do the big signature hikes.

Kolob Canyons at Zion NP:

Main Area of Zion:

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