Zion: The Heavenly City of God

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We woke up and left the Terrace Brook Lodge.

We had coffee and muffins/bagels at the Mean Bean coffee shop.  The Bohemian serving us was friendly and efficient, and the atmosphere was interesting, but the food tasted.. um… old.  There was an upper deck which afforded us a great view over the rooftops of Springdale all the way to the cliffs of Zion.  We didn’t stick around long because it was cold and windy, and we had a full day of exploring ahead. 

The Mean Bean Coffee Shop

We then drove right up to the National Park entrance, flashed the Access Pass, and then boarded the shuttle where our charismatic driver, Chris M., entertained and educated the passengers with his wealth of knowledge. He even brought a textbook along with pictures. He imparted his knowledge of the park wildlife, geology and history as he wisked us through the Canyon all the way to The Temple of Sinawava and back. 

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Chris M. sharing his passion of Zion National Park

The scenery was absolutely breathtaking. No pictures can do this justice.  At Canyon Crossing, we decided to get off the bus and take the Pa’ Rus trail back to the visitors center. 

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This trail follows the Virgin River, crosses it about 5 times, and winds through the campground before reaching the visitors center. 

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We then boarded another shuttle back into the canyon to the Zion Lodge for lunch.  Our next driver, Michelle, wasn’t nearly as riveting as Chris was.  She simply pushed ‘play’ on a pre-recorded message and basically ignored the passengers.

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The Zion Lodge was a beauty.  We ate “All American Cheeseburgers” in the dining room upstairs while enjoying the spectacular view.

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After lunch there was time to explore the Emerald Pools.  I walked along the paved path to the lower pool.  It reminded me of Redwall Cavern in the Grand Canyon, with a thin waterfall spilling over the top.  The pavement followed the cavern and then stopped.   Since I had made it this far, I thought I’d follow the trail and check out the middle pool.  I  was rewarded with another great view, which in turn inspired me to explore the upper (and final) pool.  This was the best of the three and was surrounded by a sand beach.   As I was heading back, I chatted with a lot of the other hikers.  Everyone seemed really friendly.

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Look closely in the upper right hand corner of the picture below.  You’ll see the top of the waterfall behind the tree tops.

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Back at the Lodge, we boarded the shuttle and got off at the History Museum to view the park film. The cinemetography, narration and music were all  really well-done, which compensated for the screaming kids in the front row of the auditorium. We then shuttled back to the main visitors center and signed up for tomorrow’s two hour “Ranger Program”, which is essentially another shuttle ride.

We returned to the car and drove back to the Thunderbird Lodge for another night.  This was a good call, as the price was right, and tonight’s room was much nicer than the previous night.  It was amazing how quiet this room was compared to the one we had only 4 doors down.

We went out for dinner again at the Pizza and Noodle company. Why mess with a good thing?

After dinner, I apparently had not had enough views for the day, so I took a shuttle back to the park, then transfered to another shuttle all the way to the Temple of Sinawava.  It was dark when the bus made the return trip though the canyon.

Official information about Zion National Park, can be found on the Park’s website and better yet, by checking out the Zion Map and Guide.

More pictures will be posted ASAP.  Tomorrow will be a big day, as we are heading to Bryce Canyon right after the Zion Ranger Program.  You can read all about it by clicking here.

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Published in: on April 25, 2009 at 6:26 am  Comments (1)  
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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. ok, Steve. I’m posting lots of comments. Starting … RIGHT NOW!!!!!!


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