I asked my friend Dan the other night, “does it make me pathetic that I go to Zion almost every week these days?” And he said “no!” I don’t know what it is, but I just don’t feel comfortable sitting at home on my days off. Maybe because I know that during the week, there pretty much is no other option after work, since it gets dark at 5:30ish. Living in a small town is one thing in the summertime when the sun only sets around 9 p.m. (we’re so far west in the mountain time zone, that’s why) and you can go hiking after work. But now, it gets very cold here after the sun sets. The difference in temps between daytime and nighttime can be about 30 degrees. I’m sure those ranges will get even larger as we get more into winter. And no, I’m not looking forward to it, not one bit. I think the only thing that will save me this winter from sinking into an abyss (yes, I’m being a bit dramatic) is the fact that we get more sun here than we did back east. I remember sitting and looking out the small window of my office last January. The sky always seemed to be a foreboding gray and on a really gloomy day it could be almost dark by 3:30 p.m.
So, as I mentioned in an earlier post, I’ve taken to using the heck out of my annual National Parks Pass. For $80, I get unlimited access to the system of national parks and monuments in one year. That’s an amazing deal considering that entrance to one park alone usually ranges from $25-30 per visit. I know that eventually some of my friends plan on visiting so I’ve taken to doing many of the various trails at Zion, scoping them out, so to speak. This weekend, I decided to do the Pa’Rus Trail, which has its trailhead very close to the Visitor Center, and ends near the Canyon Junction stop on the shuttle bus’ route. It’s very flat and paved most of the way –very easy to ride bikes on, or take a baby stroller. It also closely follows the Virgin River as it winds through the park. Another reason I chose it is because I knew I would be in sun for most of the walk. Daytime temps around here are now in the 50s, and if there’s not much of a breeze, it’s very comfortable. I just really need to feel the sun on my face these days.
Along my walk, I ran into two ladies walking a very cute doggie, so of course I started up a conversation. They were from Flagstaff, so we talked about life in the west compared to back east. Funny, but they considered Flagstaff to be a small town. We laughed because it’s all relative, I guess. Compared to Boston back east, it might be, but to me in Kanab, it’s a huge metropolis!
Anyway, I hope you enjoy the pics. Please note that I’ve created a new category of posts called Hikes and National Parks. The good news is that after the end of November, you won’t have to take the shuttle bus to go along the scenic drive in the park. However, I’m not sure if the scenic drive part will be shut off when the parking capacity has been met – they did that a few weeks ago, so the shuttle bus was returned to service on weekends only during November.
Thank you for doing your Amazon shopping via my affiliate link!