Completely blow away by Antelope Canyon, we changed course, heading into Utah and towards the famed route 12. We were naturally very excited for this leg of the journey, because this area of the USA is simply famous for national parks that have changed the way people see the world. It’s a balance of elevation, sandstone, weather, and time that produces some of the most stunning geography inside the US borders. We began it all at Zion.
And boy, did we ever not do Zion well. One of the problems of traveling without steady employment is that the day of the week loses all sorts of importance. As Les Claypool said, the weekends don’t mean much when you’re unemployed, ‘cept that you get to hang out with your working friends. This is true for us and the entire reason we drove into Zion at noon on a Saturday. Never do that.
It’s not just traffic, you also have to find a place to park, because the rangers rightly close off the main road to cars. The parking lot in the park is big enough, but it was still full, so we had to drive into the Sedona-esque town directly South of the park, which did nothing but stress me out.
So I wasn’t in the best of moods when we did enter the park to see things like this.
We rode the bus down the main road to the last stop to hike up the river. It’s a really nice, easy hike under the trees as you follow the river upstream. Eventually the path ends because the rocks on either side of the river narrow, meaning that the only way up is in good boots or barefoot.
After that we stopped for a couple of shorter hikes and viewed the mountains from the bus window.
I think that I would have liked Zion more if we had down some more serious hikes higher into the hills. I would love to go back and hike to the top of Angel’s landing or up to a different peak for a view down into the valley. We only spent a Saturday afternoon there, though, so it didn’t impress me as much as it has others. I fully admit that we did not give it enough time or approach it in a way to help us enjoy it more, though.
Because it is a beautiful place.