Zion National Park
After leaving the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, we made it up to Kanab in Utah. Somewhere you've probably never heard of, but have probably seen. It was the go-to place for making Westerns for a while. It calls itself "Little Hollywood" I'm not a fan of westerns, but walking along the street there are little plaques to the actors and the moves they've been in that were filmed in the area. I've seen a lot of them.
Shout out incidently to the Wild Thyme Cafe. We rocked up about five minutes before closing, nope time was not an issue. Good food, lovely service, didn't feel pressured to eat and run. Really nice people and atmosphere.
The following morning I took a wander through the town, then headed back to the hotel and we took off for Zion National Park. I had no idea what was there, but it was in the right direction, so off we went.
It's worth the visit. It's a canyon, but you're in the canyon, not on the edge. Not anywhere as big as the Grand Canyon, also different rocks, so a completely different feel to it. (Different altitude and climate help too).
It has a few nice things before you get to it properly. There are two tunnels, which might take a while (did for us). If someone has a big car (like the big camper trailers), they need to close off traffic in both directions and the big cars drive down the middle of the road, so took us a while to get through.
We wanted to park in the national park itself, but the parking lots were all full, so we drove through, parked in the town of Springdale and walked back to the national park. Like the South Rim, no cars in the national park, just a free bus service. So we got on that and started heading upstream.
There was a nice lodge about halfway up where we had lunch and I discovered somewhere called "Walter's Wiggles" A series of 21 switchbacks cut into the rock to allow a trail to be built in the 1930s up the side of the canyon to a spot called Angel's Landing. Walter was the park superintendent who had the switchbacks built. It would be a spectacular trail, the very end of it is along a ridge with steep drop offs on both sides, nice to read about, probably terrifying if you have to walk it.
We continued on the bus up to the end and discovered the place was packed with people who continue walking up the river. Apparently you can go miles upstream, which also explains why there are all warnings about flash floods. It is a slot canyon, so once you're in it, you pretty much have sheer walls on either side. We of course, didn't have suitable attire for going upstream, so we turned around and wandered back down.
We walked a few legs between bus stops. There are big arches in some of the cliffs, naturally occuring, but the local Indians use to use some of them as grain stores which was interesting to discover.
At the end, just outside the park is the town of Springdale. A bit of a tourist trap, but also some rathe nice arty stuff, some lovely wind sculptures, but not really practical buying a big set of blades to try and bring back to Australia.
Also worth mentioning there was a weird thing on the side of the hill above the town. It stood out a bit, a big square. I took a photo of it and it should be below somewhere. I have no idea what it is. Very deliberate and odd though.
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Last modified: October 14 2017 16:10:16.
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