Days 72 & 73 – Zion National Park

Zion National Park

In my last post, I mentioned that we were trying to gain access to The Wave in Utah through the lottery that they have. Unfortunately, we weren’t chosen for the 6-mile hike, but we had other exciting things heading our way so we weren’t too bummed out, just tired! We woke up 5:30 AM in Page, Arizona to drive up to Kanab, Utah. Most of Arizona doesn’t participate in daylights savings time while Utah still does… So, we lost an hour driving to the lottery, and we’re absolutely not morning people so we were pretty beat. We arrived to Zion National Park through the East Entrance and got amazing views heading out to the visitor center. Zion has a huge tunnel that you drive through, pretty much the side of a mountain that we were looking forward to driving through. The drive in was a great introduction to the park!

Zion National Park

Since we were so tired our first day we decided against doing a big hike, instead we got on the shuttle bus that takes you up a road you can’t drive up unless you’ve got a permit. The shuttle has a narrative that talks about each stop as you pass it, then the last stop on the trip is Riverside Walk. We got off at this stop and took the easy walk to the end and back. This walk leads to The Narrows, part of a hike that you’ve got to walk through water in a canyon to see the best parts, but Zion is pretty prone to flash floods so when the water is moving too quickly they close this portion. It was a nice walk, but we just thought it was too funny watching people in awe at the squirrels… that apparently have a habit of biting visitors, there are warning signs everywhere!

Zion National Park

Just like the Grand Canyon our luck of getting a campsite within the park was non-existent. At this point if there are no showers in the national parks I’m not sure if we’ll even try to get a spot. There’s usually Bureau of Land Management areas (BLM) right outside most parks that are completely free so we looked one up on our free campsites website and went for it. We pretty much went off-roading to get to the top of this mesa, but it was an awesome site! You wouldn’t believe the driving my little Hyundai did, I’m proud of my car! However, we decided camping on top the next night wasn’t going to be the best decision for my car so when we left the next morning we set up our tent at the bottom of the mesa so we’d have a spot for later.

Zion National Park

Hiking up Angel’s Landing trail was recommended to us so we decided to list and go up that trail. To get to it you’ve got to hike up the West Rim Trail, then hike up the Walter’s Wiggles and then you’re finally at the Angel’s Landing trailhead. The West Rim and Walter’s Wiggles are really steep, but the real challenge comes when you get to Angel’s Landing. The whole trail is lined with a chain that’s bolted to the rocks for you to hold onto, the entire trail is rock. Before you start the trail there’s a warning sign that people have died from taking the trail, and once we were up there we could see why! One wrong foot placement and something seriously tragic could happen. We made it up the trail though, 5,990 feet! We had lunch at the top and sat in what seemed like the only shade, we had an amazing view! After scuffling back down the rocks the rest of the way was easy; so easy that people were running down the steep trails.

Zion National Park

To reward ourselves after that hike, and since it was Saint Patrick’s Day, we stopped at Zion Brewing Company on the way out of the park to get some pub food. When we got back to our campsite we discovered a humongous spider hiding on the outside of our tent underneath the rainfly, Elliot took on his boyfriend duties and exterminated it for me. We admired the stars for a while then slept soundly that night.

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