Zion NP Traverse – Day 1

Zion NP Traverse + Every other trail in the park (Total = 90 miles + approx. 20 miles for trails I could not loop)

I got a lift into the East Rim Trailhead around 10am and set off for the 10 mile walk to Zion Canyon and the glorious views that awaited.
When I started it was overcast, but the weather deteriorated as the day progressed. Overcast turned to a light drizzle as I approached the canyon (valley?). I did not head down and instead turned up to Observation Point. It was here, as the rain turned to snow, that I decided to not just hike the Traverse but try and hike all the marked trails in the park. Lets see what happens!

The main canyon is absolutely stunning! With the clouds just below the rim, I was mesmerised.

After deciding to leave that vantage point – mainly because I was shaking with cold – I headed into the canyon. On the way down the clouds parted for a brief second, but then got much worse and the it rained hard for the next 3hrs.

I took the bus up the the Narrows and waded in. Not the smartest idea of my life… my feet were cold and every 5 minutes I had to find a rock above the waterline to let them thaw out. It was beautiful wading up the slot canyon, but I have to say I was mainly thinking about my feet.

I turned around and headed for Angels Landing. The weather was a kind of blessing with not meeting a single person on the way up and only 2 people on the way down. This is highly unusual for one of (if not) the most popular hike in the US. It did allow me to just walk normally up the narrow path rather than be part of a conga line, but I could not see the normal vista. You win some, you lose some I guess.

I then headed out of the canyon and walked for about an hour until the sun started to set. I was lucky enough that just as I got to the canyon rim there was one last burst of rain before it cleared to scattered clouds.

Miserable weather but some of the most beautiful terrain I have ever seen.

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