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Friday, April 23, 2010

Day 12: Zion NP (Leg: 0, Trip: 1,129.8)

Carol's blog has the details on breakfast, but I do want to add about the Majestic Lodge's free museum. Next to the lobby there is a small free animal museum where many animals are posed in their natural environment. At first, I thought it was just the animals here in the park, but there is a polar bear and two Arctic white foxes, and, while the park is big, it is not that big. Anyway, this is a great little stop for kids as it is interesting seeing all the animals yet it isn't so big that they would get bored.

After eating, we went to the visitors center and rode the shuttle all the way up to the last stop. There you can take the 2 mile Riverside walk further up the canyon. This walk is fairly level and is paved all the way. There are several hills, but nothing too hard.




As you can see in the picture below, the trail is wide and made of cement. I sure would not have wanted to be the guy who hauled all that concrete up to make the trail!



At one spot the trail narrowed and you went under an overhanging rock. Tall people do have to duck to make it through! You can also see a lot of decomposed sandstone (a very fine power) on the trail.





My better half on the trail

Alongside the trail, I came across this flower and both Carol and I took pictures of it. There are very few flowers in this part of the canyon. (I could count them on one hand) This is because the canyon walls are so tall and close to each other, that the sun doesn't reach down into the canyon very long each day. At some points, the canyon is only 50-70 feet wide and it gets even narrower further up beyond where the path ends.



This is the end of the trail. There is a nice landing with benches to rest on. If you want to go further into the "narrows," you must wade in the river because there is no space between the canyon walls that is not in the river!




Because of the high water flow, the Narrows is closed, so you must turn around at this point.






You can't see it too well, but the current here is very strong and trying to wade through it with the flow at this level is impossible. It would easily knock you over. As another sign says, people have died here trying to fight the current, especially when a flash flood happens.







This is the view back down the canyon from about the half way point. It is so serene with the noise of the water flowing.



After we finished the walk, we reboarded the shuttle and went to the Court of the Patriarchs. Carol's blog has the pics on that. It is about a 100 yard walk from the shuttle station up to a viewpoint, almost uphill the whole way. Several guys were really huffing and puffing as we passed them. Fortunately, for us, we didn't have any problem with the short climb.


We came back to the RV, had lunch, and I am trying to solve a water problem. We seem to have a very limited flow to the kitchen faucet. I verified that we had good pressure all the way to the filter, but somehow the filter output fitting won't seal right and it now leaks like crazy. I am waiting on a repair person to come up from Hurricane to bring parts for it. (Popup Quiz: Do you remember how to pronounce Hurricane here? - see entry for Day 10 for answer).


We have some activities planned for this evening which are now in jeopardy pending the repairs. Stay tuned!

UPDATE: 10:30pm.
We just returned from dinner and a ranger program in Zion. The dinner wasn't exactly what I planned. We had reservations for 6:45 at the Zion Park Lodge for dinner. But due to the water problems above, we could not get there in time. So we ate at a place in Sringdale (just outside the park) called Pioneer. The food was OK, nothing to write home about though (of course, we do blog about it and everything else!).
The ranger program was on the night sky. It was interesting, but it was also cold and we left at 10pm when the formal program ended. We could have stayed later to look at the various constellations but we were both quite cold in spite of wearing several layers of clothes. Plus we need to get going to Vegas tomorrow.
Note to friends Charlie and Pam: You would both like Zion - lots of art galleries, gift shops, and souvenirs to look over. Actually some good looking art, not some of the junk you usually see at tourist traps.
So tonight it was a clear sky and we did see the stars. Also the moon is at 74% full so we could easily walk back to the car by moonlight. We are both sorry to leave Zion because there are still many things we would like to do. But we move on knowing that we will return to Zion in the not too distant future.

3 comments:

Margie M. said...

Nice post and pics. Thanks for taking us on the hike with you. Looked great from where I'm sitting. LOL

kevin &robin said...

Hurriken, by the locals

Kiersten said...

Great picture of Mom on the trail! It looks like you are having lots of fun. Oregon misses you... I haven't checked in with Washington about it lately.