Zion National Park

Our original plan for this summer was to utilize Connor's fourth grade national parks pass and do a road trip hitting up several national parks. Alas, covid changed things. But, we did decide to go to Zion National Park on our "way" home...it was a couple hours out of the way. But the thing is, when you are on a road trip, you wonder if you will ever be back there, so stopping is always a good idea. 

Ian planned ahead and booked us shuttle tickets at Zion. Part of it is only accessible via the shuttle. Well, you can bike it too, but that wouldn't be happening! The shuttles are severely limited in capacity because of covid. We chose a "hike" that apparently is the most popular one in the park. I struggle even calling it a hike because it is completely paved and really only had one small spot with even an incline. Maybe calling it a walk would be more appropriate. It was a hot day at Zion, over 100 degrees. Thankfully we got there early, around 9am. Also the hike-walk was mostly shaded, making it bearable. But, there is no air in the shuttle and it is about a 40 minute ride each direction. I'm pretty sure that's what did the kids in! 

After the hike, we were going to stop at another shuttle stop, but after waiting for the shuttle, then riding on the shuttle a bit, the kids were grumpy. So, we went back to near our car and had a picnic lunch. Then we grabbed ice cream to cool off and drove the road through Zion. I was taken by the unique landscape and how it changes as you drive through the park...it's only like an 11 mile drive or something. But this made me decide I wanted to come back later. 

So, after dinner, we headed back into the park. The sun wasn't high in the air anymore, the temps had cooled off a bit. We drove until we found a good place to park and get out and play. We spent two hours throwing rocks, climbing logs and just enjoying ourselves. This was definitely my favorite part of the day. It made it totally worth keeping the kids up past bedtime. In fact, they were in great moods, enjoying themselves so much. And driving out of the park just as it was getting dark was rather fun. 

These next pictures are from when we went back into the park in the evening. 

^^ Isla said these rocks looked like shells. With their layered lines, they really did. What was crazy is they were almost like a sand material, so if the kids threw a rock, it easily busted when it hit the ground.

If you have never been to Zion, I highly recommend it. Judging by the parking situation, it seems it was WAY less busy than normal, due to covid. It still felt plenty busy and I think would have been an unpleasant experience had we gone at a normal peak time for the park. Also, if you can go offseason when it isn't so hot, I recommend that...because it is hot, hot, HOT there. 

In case you missed my other road trip posts - we stopped at the Bonneville Salt Flats and stayed in Park City for a week. 

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