Home ยป Zion National Park
Coming from Las Vegas, our next stop was Zion National Park, located in southern Utah about 160 miles northeast of Las Vegas. Our travel day and the following day, when we visited Zion, were the first rainy days since we left Hilton Head – no blue skies in our pictures for the first time!
The main – and most spectacular – feature of the park is the 15 mi long Zion Canyon, carved into the so-called red Navaho Sandstone by the Virgin river. The canyon walls rise up to 2000 ft (600 m) above the river and narrow to a width of only 20 ft (6 m) at the end of the part that is accessible by road and/or trail.
We stayed in the Watchman campground inside the National Park where the rubber lining of our trailer roof was damaged by low hanging tree branches – not good in the pouring rain we had this day!

Where the canyon road dead ends, the canyon remains accessible for another mile or so via a trail along the Virgin river. At the end of this trail, the only way to continue into the still narrowing gorge is by wading in the river, something we decided to skip after we checked the water temperature!

Maybe we’ll have to come back again in sunshine!

The Virgin cuts away its canyon faster than its tributaries can cut away their own streambeds, so tributaries end in waterfalls from hanging valleys where they meet the Virgin. Therefore, dozens of waterfalls decorate the canyon walls, some of them 1000 ft or more high.

 
When we left Zion the next day, the rain system had moved away, but not without leaving a snow blanket at altitudes above 6,000 ft (1.800 m). We drove eastward on state route 14 that traverses the Dixie National Forest above 8,000 ft (2.400 m) – presenting us a phantastistic winter-wonderland that more than compensated us for the two days of rain.
 
View eastwards toward the 8,000 ft high Colorado Plateau as it stair-steps down in the Bryce Canyon area
 
 
Did I already mention that the yellow and golden colors of the Aspen is one of my most favorite views?
 
 
 
 
 

 

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