We have just spent the last couple of days in Zion Canyon National Park and like everything else in this area it is the scale of everything that is so breathtaking. We were walking on a trail just above a river and there were boulders in the river that had fallen from the cliffs. These “boulders” were larger than SUVs. For my family, think of the huge Muskoka rock at Rick’s cottage where a walkway was blasted through it. These bits of rock that had fallen off gigantic cliffs were that size. There is just no way to show this with photos. You can occasionally see rock climbers on the cliffs in Zion. The cliffs are so high that it often takes climbers two or three days to climb one cliff face. They attach hammocks to the side of the cliff to sleep for the night. The park asks that the climbers shine a light on themselves all night so that the rangers can see that they are still there from down below.
Bryce has an optional shuttle bus for visitors who don’t want the hassles of driving and trying to park at the various scenic lookouts. At Zion, due to the additional crowds, the shuttle is mandatory. I was hoping that since it was October when we arrived the crowds would have died down and the shuttle bus would have become optional but it wasn’t. It actually wasn’t that bad. In the prime time of the day it ran every 6 minutes. It allowed you to get off at a lookout and sometimes walk downhill to the next lookout and then pick a bus up there again. It is a hop on, hop off bus. There is also a commentary that is quite good while you are riding it.
In the last article we had pictures of hoodoos. Here is the story behind them in Bryce Canyon. “Before there were any Indians, the Legend People lived in this place. There were many of them. They were of many kinds – birds, animals, lizards, and such things – but they looked like people…For some reason, the Legend People in that place were bad. Because they were bad, the trickster Coyotes turned them all into rocks. You can see them in that place now; all turned into rocks; some standing in rows, some sitting down, some holding on to others. You can see their faces, with paint on them just as they were before them became rocks…” Paiute Indian Legend.
Mike and I left Zion today and drove to a campground 40 miles north of the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. It was the closest we could get. We are now in Arizona which doesn’t use daylight savings time. This means that when it is 9am in the rest of the region it is only 8am in Arizona. Mike would like me to go to bed earlier and get up earlier in the morning. I am not good at that. My compromise was that we leave all the clocks on daylight savings time and therefore when I get up at 9 it will actually be 8 am. I don’t really think that this will change anything as our meals and everything else will probably still be based on the time we get up but it sounds good.