Finally making it to the top in Zion
Yet another trip planned at the last minute, but would it really be a trip for me if we didn't plan it a week or less in advance? I ABSOLUTELY love Utah and if I wasn't even more in love with Oregon, this would be the place I would move to. I continue to fall in love with the iron red landscape and abundance of amazing National Parks. I love how it is completely opposite of Southern California. The people are nicer and the landscape scenery to go on without a human built structure in site. The best part is it is only 5 and a half hours from Southern California, so it is the perfect escape for a few days.
We didn't exactly come prepared for rain, but that did not stop it from coming down as we entered the park. Yet again, I was lucky when it came to grabbing a camping spot in Zion. The first night, we managed to find a cancelled reservation at Watchman Campground and the next night we were able to squeeze in at the first-come, first-serve South Campground. I don't recommend coming to Zion on the weekend without a reservation or any time during the peak months. Thankfully, our trip was Wednesday through Friday and the peak season had just ended.
Once we set up our campsite, we decided since it was raining to forgo our planned hike to the Emerald Pools. We opted to hop on the shuttle and took in the amazing view that is Zion. When we reached the last stop, the rain let up and we hiked the Riverside Walk Trail. This is the perfect trail for those that are not huge hikers since it is paved, short, and features beautiful scenery.
We headed back and made our culinary masterpiece of Top Ramen and then headed off to bed early in preparation for hiking Angels Landing.
This is the day I had been anticipating for a while. My first trip to Zion was last May and once we reached the part of Angels Landing where you make the final crossing and scramble across the rocks, my dad chickened out. I told myself I would make it back to this park before winter and hike it — I made it happen.
Before starting the last bit of the hike to the top, I prayed I would not be the one dumb person per year that fell of the 1,000 foot drop. God was faithful and I didn't fall. I am terrified of heights, but the last bit of the hike was not as bad as I thought it would be. Once we reached the top, we ate our lunch and enjoyed the view for about an hour.
If you are heading out to Zion and are able to handle strenuous hikes, then I 100 percent recommend doing this hike. The steep switchbacks and 1,000 foot drops are worth the view at the end.
Isaac Behunin, the man who named Zion once said, "A man can worship God among these great cathedrals as well as he can in any man-made church; this is Zion." As I was overlooking the canyon after making the treacherous hike up, this is exactly what went through my mind.