Sunday, June 5, 2016

From One Extreme to Another: Zion National Park, Utah

Weather and river conditions board at Zion Outfitters

We've been experiencing crazy swings in weather here in Southern Utah. A couple of weeks ago, we drove through a snowfall on our way down Scenic Route 12 and this week, the temps are in the 103-110 degrees F range. We tried to do a few short hikes in Zion National Park, but spent a good portion of the day soaking in the Virgin River eating oranges.

 Luis cooling off in the Virgin River, Zion Nat'l Park

It's a gorgeous park and really well-organized, despite the millions of visitors they get every year. We took advantage of the free hop-on-hop-off shuttle and saw as much as we could in the heat, then gave up and hit the Lodge for a couple of cold local craft beers. Ahhh! 

Toasting the amazing scenery from the shade of the beer garden

The views are spectacular and Luis is planning on hiking the Narrows tomorrow, a 5-hour hike over river rocks through a running, cold stream to the very narrow opening of a canyon. The park recommends renting special neoprene booties and non-slip shoes and a long wooden stick due to the slipperiness and so that your feet don't fall off from frostbite. Um, pass. I'll head to Deseret Industries, the Utah equivalent of Goodwill thrift shops while Luis is hiking. Yep, that's the secret to a happy marriage. 

The Narrows trail head at the end of Riverwalk