We are staying at the Zion River Resort and Campground in Virgin, about 10 miles from the entrance to Zion NP. This is a beautiful park and we are excited to be here for two weeks while we explore the Park. First, a little history about the Park, which has become one of our favorite Parks. In 1909 President Taft named the area a National Monument, and in 1918 the National Park Service changed the Park’s name to Zion. The US Congress established the monument as a National Park on November 19, 1919, Utah’s first national park. Zion National Park encompasses some of the most scenic canyon country in the US. Click on thumbnail to view images
Our first hike we chose to do was Angels Landing, not for the faint hearted, more for the die harded. This is one of the most famous hikes in all of Zion National Park, and it is very challenging but worth the view. We took the shuttle to the Grotto Picnic area and crossed the river and started the hiked on a well maintained level trail to switchbacks that led us up to Refrigerator Canyon. Then on up to Walter’s Wiggles, a series of tight switchbacks onto the ridge at Scouts Lookout. A lot of people stop here and don’t experience the best part of the hike, the ridiculously steep and narrow Hogsback, using chains bolted into the stone to keep hikers from sliding over the edge of the cliff. If you get vertigo or are afraid of heights this hike may not be for you. Once we conquered the Hogsback we arrived at Angels Landing Summit, with views in all directions and particularly the view of Zion Canyon. We stayed here and ate lunch amongst the trees taking in the vistas before heading back down. Click on thumbnail to view images
The crowds were starting to increase as we started on our way and we had to take turns holding the chains because it was so narrow and steep. We did pass some hikers who were not prepared for the strenuous hike ahead of them and especially with not enough water. We celebrated the completion of another wonderful hike at Jacks Sports Grill in Springdale before going back to our Sherpa.