It’s amazing how lazy I can be about publishing digital photos, given how easy is it now compared to the pain of getting down to the photo shop, paying a lot of money, and subsequently picking up prints. Anyway, a few weeks ago I took a delightful 4-day trip to Zion National Park in Utah. My good friend Nick came out from California and met me for some camping and hiking.

It’s really a stunningly beautiful place, perhaps my favorite of the national parks. Sheer cliffs of deep red sandstone rise dramatically from the floor of the river canyon. The variation in altitude and distribution of water make for a wide array of ecosystems, from forest to desert. The signature hike in the place goes upriver through the narrow part of the canyon (“The Narrows”) and involves a lot of trudging through the river where the river takes up the entire canyon floor. Almost every time we came around a bend we would get an exotic new scene of primordial beauty.

It’s a small park and remarkably well-managed. Transportation through the canyon is by shuttle bus during most of the year. Signage and trail maintenance are pristine. Foreign and domestic visitors kept all the major trails well-populated during our visit, even on a weekday in late September. It had the feel of a theme park at times, because it was so well-managed and crowded. I would like to try some back-country backpacking if I go back, but we didn’t have the gear or the time to try it this trip.

You can find a few more photos in the full set .

  1. #1 written by Nick October 13th, 2006 at 13:54

    It was indeed a fun trip, despite the fact that there was no gambling or drinking or hookers. Josh, you may not have known this but I am actually a Jell-O jiggler in human shape. I have no bones or muscles and anything I do that might appear to be walking, biking, or running, is actually just the appearance of self motivated locomotion. I actually just jiggle places. That is why I always drank berry flavored sugar water.

    The hikes were pretty easy, even for me the guy with no muscular or skeletal structure.

    I would go again. But I think next time we should go someplace in the south east USA. I’ve not spent much time there and I think it would be an extra-special experience to run into an apalachian hillbilly. I’ve always wanted to meet the distant cousin of the freakish desert dwelling weirdo I’m already familiar with.

    RE Q

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