North Zion

Trip Start Aug 20, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of United States  , Utah
Saturday, September 10, 2005

North Zion, Kanarranville UT

9/9 Friday After leaving Antelope Island we drove south on I15 past Cedar City to a small town called Kanarraville where we stayed at a Passport America campground. It was not to our liking so we only took 2 nights. Since Friday was considered a travel day we selected the least best destination of the 3 on the schedule for the afternoon and drove to Snow Canyon State Park in Ivins UT. We entered the park from the north on the advice of the guy at the St George Visitors Center and selected two short hikes - Pioneer Names and Jenny's Canyon. The first one was a short 1/2 mile crescent shaped trail that passed pioneer names written in axle grease on the side of the mountain dating back to 1881. The second trail was also short and led to a sculpted slot canyon. This was our first glimpse of the canyons to come and a great introduction.

9/10 Sat We saved North Zion and Cedar Breaks Nat'l Monument for today when we were well rested. North Zion is called Kolob Canyons and has a road only 5 miles long. We drove to the end along a very steep road and were rewarded with brilliant red towering canyons. Once there we took the Timber Creek Overlook 1 mile trail along a ridge top to view the creek and nearby mountains. While it was still early we took another hike along the Taylor Creek to the Larsen cabin which was occupied until 1933. We counted 14 creek crossings along this scenic walk and felt like we had seen what this part of Zion had to offer - one high/mountain trail and one low/creek trail.
In the afternoon we drove to Cedar Breaks Nat'l Monument and had a picnic lunch. It was very windy and cool due to the altitude (10,350 ft). We stopped at the Visitor Center and could not help but be amazed at the spectacular wonderland that presented itself - a multi-colored amphitheater filled with rock formations - spires, fins, hoodoos (rock piles). It was 2000 ft deep and 3 miles in diameter. After taking lots of pictures we drove the 10 mile round trip, scenic drive to get different views of the "breaks". We could only take 1 hike here and chose the Ramparts Trail along the rim passing a stand of ancient bristle cone pines. This was by far the scariest thing we've done so far. The wind was fierce and there were no guardrails. But we got some awesome views and pictures - not to mention memories.
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