Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Color of Zion

After several months of landscapes colored by amber waves of grain, we have arrived in southwestern Utah, otherwise known as Color Country. We have been to Zion National Park twice before, but I had forgotten the real beauty and color that surrounds the visitor there. We hiked there Wednesday, climbing to Scout Lookout. That is a point about 1/2 mile from Angels Landing, a really beautiful place about mid-way into the Zion Canyon through the park.

Hopefully you can appreciate the beauty of Angels Landing from this viewpoint on the floor of the canyon--more than 1000 ft above the Virgin River. We had no intention of climbing to the very to. Those climbing beyond Scout Landing use the chain you can see here for the final ascent. It helps keep them from slipping off the trail. We were not the least bit interested in going that last half mile, either this year or four years ago.

This little chipmunk was doing his best to tempt all the hikers into owing a $100 fine for feeding the wildlife. He knew how to get fed and raise money for the park at the same time. We had already eaten our lunch, plus we knew better than to give him anything. Isn't he cute, though?

The many rock formations in Zion range in color from white through several shades of red to black. Here are a some photos of the canyon walls.

The trail to Scout Lookout has an elevation gain of over 1,000 ft and the trail is very, very steep in places. This is looking back down one stretch of the trail.

Here you can see the switchbacks on the lower part of the trail.

Near the top is a stretch of trail named Walter's Wiggles, a series of 21 switchbacks carved out of the side of the cliff and held up by stone walls. We took photos from both the bottom and the top of the wiggles.

The trail gives a good view of Virgin River as it flows through the canyon.

1 comment:

  1. It must be beautiful at Zion at this time of the year. Just be sure to get out before the snowfall!

    Connie and Art