Monday, July 7, 2008

Desert Destination: Zion National Park

Every Monday we visit a desert destination.
Located at the junction of the Mojave Desert, Great Basin Desert, and Colorado Plateau, Zion National Park preserves over 200 square miles of exceptional terrain. Nearly everywhere you go, the views are stupendous.

Last week, Desert Boy and I headed to Zion to meet up with Uncle Andrew and his friends. It was hot, so we decided that the best afternoon hike would be in the Virgin River.
The river was flowing 43 cubic feet per second (cfs), and there had been no recent storms, so the water was clear and usually about knee high. But in some places the water was shallower, and in others deeper.
We hiked upstream with some of the other 2.5 million visitors that Zion receives each year. Some of the footwear was quite interesting--and some people chose to wear no footwear at all--ouch!
After a couple hours we reached the junction with Orderville Canyon. That canyon was narrower and the water warmer, so we headed up it. It had some interesting obstacles to negotiate.
Desert Boy didn't mind getting his toes wet.
And he delighted in playing in the water and sand.
Eventually we got to a place where we could go no further. So we enjoyed the view and headed back downstream.
The crowds had thinned out and we had a few moments where we felt alone in the impressive canyon.
The entire hike took about 5 or 6 hours, including many stops. It was a tiring but fun hike. Most importantly, we all came back alive.


Anonymous said...

Desert Boy ignored hiking rules 1 and 7 but he still survived.

Lori said...

Zion is one of my dream trips. Maybe one day.....

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