Thursday, July 19, 2012

Ho Hum - another SW trip - NOT!

My good friend, Raney, and I hatched a plot to drive out to Texas visiting as many National Parks as we could manage (and it was alot!) along the way.  She would land at her son's in Plano. I would continue south to Austin.  We planned an ambitious first day.....Fresno to St. George, Utah.  The drive was going great until we stopped to visit The Raceway in Las Vegas and got caught in a detour that took us several miles in the wrong direction.  Then an unfortunate accident shutdown Highway 15.  A truck driver in the next lane kept us in the information loop via his CB radio.  An hour or so later the highway patrol directed everyone except the big rigs to cross the median and back west (again in the wrong direction) to a side road that eventually took us around the accident.  (I was very glad not to be driving my van; it wouldn't have made it across the median!).  Not quite dark we arrived at Raney's cousins, M and M, in St. George.

Zion is in M and M's backyard; it was fun to hear their stories of hiking and kayaking in the area.  After  yummy omelets prepared by M (on the left :), we hit the road to Zion.   First stop was the Visitor's Center, then we rode the Shuttle up to the end of the canyon to hike the Riverside Trail.

The cliffs at the end of the canyon (and road) are called The Temple of Sinawava.  With only a narrow opening up  river they surround three sides of the canyon.

It was a busy day in the park, but we found a chance for a picture along the Riverside trail.

At the beginning of The Narrows there were many people were headed up the river even though the Park rated the chance of thunder storms as moderate.   

Back down canyon on the Shuttle, we hopped off at Big Bend and hiked a primitive trail along the river.

Looking back up the canyon.....

And down canyon.....

Taking full advantage of the Shuttle, we hopped on and off at several locations, finally landing at the Human History Museum.  The storm clouds continued to build, but nothing more than light scattered showers.  (On my honor, this is true color, no touch ups!).

We stayed at Canyon Ranch in Springdale.  Green grass, yard swings and a pool (kinda cold, but nice).  Another early morning found us on the road to Bryce.  

But first a stop at Red Rock in the Dixie National Forest.  Cool arches over the road, nice Visitor Center, great trail head parking, and an extensive trail system. 

We hiked out 30 minutes or so to begin to acclimate to the higher elevations.  

And saw our first hoodoos....

I love this area!  Did I mention the great campground? (Yep, I'll be back!).


  1. Gorgeous photos Diana! Love how you squeezed so much into a short amount of time.

  2. Wow, this was a fantastic trip Diana. You know how to travel whether you are in your RV or not.


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