Cedar City to Zion June 2010

pixie1339

Desperately Seeking Sandstone
Joined
Jan 21, 2012
Messages
1,692
I'm posting this trip report for @Laura, @sixstringsteve , and @Tess to help get the stoke going for our upcoming backpack in Zion. These pics are a few years old, and I took them before I got my first DSLR, but it gives a decent overview of the area we'll be hiking, and allows me to reminisce on a fun trip.

Rick and I wanted to get out and cover some new ground, so we decided to head south and stay in Cedar City for a night. We started the trip with a visit to the Parowan Gap petroglyphs. I'd been wanting to see these glyphs for a while and every time we drove past the gap on I-15 my curiosity grew. The art was in full sun so my shots aren't that great, but the art was awesome!

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The famous zipper glyph

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I asked Rick to stop on the drive out when I thought I saw more rock art. I t turned out to be nothing, but I later learned that there is more rock art in the area, so I will be stopping here again sometime. As we started driving again, a golden eagle took off right next to the car! I wish I'd been able to snap a shot of it, but it happened too fast. It was the closest either of us had ever been to an eagle before, and eagles are Rick's spirit animal so it was pretty cool.

Our next stop was Brian Head Peak. I'd heard that that views from the top stretch out into Nevada and Arizona, so we couldn't not see that, right? After that we were going to visit Cedar Breaks National Monument. We decided to take the long way and use road that goes out to Yankee Meadows because I wanted to see the Vermillion Castle. The scenery was pretty nice! We were originally going to hike the trail, but realized we'd end up running short on time later on, so we skipped it.

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The Vermillion Castle

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Alternate view

There was still snow at the summit of Brian Head Peak, so we didn't make it all the way to the top, but we got pretty close and the views were pretty damn good!

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To infinity and beyond!

Next up was Cedar Breaks, and this place just blew me away. I couldn't believe how colorful it was! I know that many people consider it to be a mini Bryce Canyon, but in some ways it's better than Bryce. The colors are more intense than anything I've seen at Bryce and you definitely don't get the crowds like you do at Bryce. The wildflowers in the meadows during summer are superb! We hiked to trail to Spectra Point, but shortly before we reached the point my camera battery died. I was crestfallen, but vowed to return!

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Hoodoos

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Brian Head Peak looms above the amphitheater

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Spectra Point trail

After a nice night in Cedar City, we checked out of our room and began the next day's adventure. We drove out to the Cascade Falls trailhead, only to find that the trail was closed for maintenance. Bummer! At least we saw some nice sights along the way.

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Coal Creek

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Neat formation in Cedar Canyon

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Navajo Lake

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Hello cutie!

Next we drove the road that connects from Cedar Canyon to the Kolob Terrace in Zion. I loved this drive! It starts high, giving you some sweet views of Cedar Canyon, then you pass through some nice aspen forests and pretty, open meadows, before reaching Kolob Reservoir and eventually some exquisite Zion scenery below.

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Cedar Canyon goodness

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Aspens and lava rocks

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The long and winding road

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At the foot of Kolob Reservoir

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Blue Springs Reservoir

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It's beginning to look a lot like Zion

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I think I've died and gone to heaven

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The view toward Zion Canyon

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Looking back to Kolob Canyon

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Cave Valley

After we reached the end of the road we drove to Kolob Canyon so that we could hike the trail to Double Alcove Arch, a hike that was very high on my bucket list. It was an incredibly beautiful trail, that I would love to hike again someday, but unfortunately it was also a very hot day. I started feeling like hell by the time we were within a mile of the trailhead, but fortunately we got back to the car without incident.

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Kolob road shot

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Rick posing at the first cabin on the trail

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Scarlet Gilia

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Cabin number two

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Neck craning cliffs

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Almost to trail's end

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Double Alcove Arch

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Lush greenery

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The upper half of Double Alcove Arch

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Arch in the making

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Spiky

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Obligatory lizard shot

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On the road again

After the hike we drove to the end of the canyon to feast on ours on the amazing views of the finger canyons. It was a great way to end the trip!

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Last edited:

Laura

freespirittraveler
Joined
Oct 1, 2012
Messages
957
Oh, as if I needed anything to make me more excited (13 1/2 more days! :dance:) If that weren't enough, the state of Utah is running commercials during primetime in CA telling people to "picture their next trip in Utah" and then showing the most amazing shots of the 5 national parks. It's so beautiful it not only brings tears to my eyes, but I recorded a show just because it had that commercial in it. I can't WAIT to get to Utah!!!
 

pixie1339

Desperately Seeking Sandstone
Joined
Jan 21, 2012
Messages
1,692
Oh, as if I needed anything to make me more excited (13 1/2 more days! :dance:) If that weren't enough, the state of Utah is running commercials during primetime in CA telling people to "picture their next trip in Utah" and then showing the most amazing shots of the 5 national parks. It's so beautiful it not only brings tears to my eyes, but I recorded a show just because it had that commercial in it. I can't WAIT to get to Utah!!!

It will be a great trip and I can't wait to meet you guys!
 

Tess

Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2014
Messages
13
Can't wait-- only a few hours to go now! One of my appointments canceled at work so I'm just pouring back over this thread to kill the time. Too bad I'm not excited ;) looking forward to meeting you, @pixie1339 and @Laura
 
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