Monday, May 11, 2015

A Drive to Kolob Terrace and Canyon –Zion NP


After our long day of hiking on May 1, we did nothing exciting on Saturday May 2. I did not take one picture. On Sunday, May 3, we got up early and went down to Kanab to go to church. It was a small church in this beautiful little town. After mass we were invited to the Parish hall for a meal. The priest came and sat with us. He was born in Viet Nam and lived for a while in the Philippines. He was very interesting to talk to and we enjoyed the experience. We then started our drive to Kolob Terrance road. We decided to take the long way around through northern Arizona. It was longer, but faster than going back through the east entrance of Zion NP. We had done that drive a number of times and we were looking for a different experience.

While we were driving we came upon a sign for the Pipe Spring National Monument. We had no idea what that was, so we decided to stop.

This is a small NM, only about 40 acres. This NM is the site of a natural spring that provided water to this very dry area. The site was first occupied by Ancestral Puebloans dating back to about 1000 AD. Then the site was used by the Paiutes. A small community of the tribe lived and farmed in the area. They did exquisite basket weaving. The area was first visited by European explorers in the 1500’s by the Spanish. They brought with them disease and religion. Neither was appreciated by the Paiutes.

In the 1880’s the Mormon Pioneers moved into the area. They built a fort on top of the spring. This was a big problem for the Paiutes. The area is now adjacent to the Paiute Reservation. They have restored the fort and use it to tell the story of what happened there.

Here is a picture of the spring pools at the fort.


We took a tour of the fort. Here is a cool stove that was original to the fort, and used by the Mormons.


We then drove on to the South of Zion NP. We took a drive up to Kolob Terrace. It is a 17 mile drive and gains about 3000 feet in elevation. At the end is the Kolob Reservoir. The drive had some very nice views.







Kim loved the pink flowers on the prickly pear:


We then drove over to Kolob Canyons road. We had heard the views were impressive, but we were blown away. It was some of the best views anywhere in Zion. It was a great way to end our visit to this incredible National Park. I took a bunch of pictures, I think these are the best.





We took a 2 mile hike out to a viewpoint. The views from the parking lot were better. The high valleys were just amazing to look at. There are a number of trails that go up and through this amazing valley.



On our way out we saw this turkey:


To finish the day we made a stop in Cedar City and then up and over Cedar Breaks NM. This is the same road that was covered in snow about a week earlier. This time it was beautiful. I got this nice sky shot from 10000 feet.


It was another amazing day of incredible views and a little history thrown in. This concluded out visit to the big 5 in Utah. We are just blown away by the beauty. We love Utah! We loved the fact that we had the time to see as much of the park as we could handle. We were not ready to do the Angels landing hike, but we still feel we got the full experience.

We got back to the campground and were greeted with big news from others in the campground, but I will get into that in my next entry.

No comments:

Post a Comment