Our final hiking adventure in our 2013 U.S. National Park Tour was hiking in Zion National Park. Sadly the U.S. Government decided to shut down during our visit but we didn’t let it stop us. During our stay in Springdale, UT, we were frequent visitors of the Cafe Soleil Zion, which was just 500 feet from the Cliffrose Lodge & Gardens where we stayed. I recommend both.
Government Shut Down 2013
Yes, it sucked for us and many others. My heart hurt for the small business owners that were impacted and the other travelers. I will never forget the woman I spoke with in the Zion camp store. She was in tears. She and her family had waited over a year for this trip. They traveled many miles by car to camp in the park. They arrived the day before and had to leave. She had no idea where they’d stay the next day. I chatted with a couple from Paris and they were much more forgiving than I. She said, “There is no one to blame!” I retorted by saying, “Oh yes, there are plenty to blame!”
We were fearful that our elected officials would not find a way to settle the budget crisis so we prioritized our hikes. Chuck said, “All I want to do is hike to the top of Angel’s Landing.” If you follow our blog, you’ll remember that our Scotland trip included a similar statement, “All I want to do is hike the Ring of Steall!” said Chuck. The Ring of Steall nearly killed us. I’m “THRILLED” to report that no one died during our hike to Angel’s Landing or during our Scotland Hiking Adventure, but six people have died since 2004 falling from the cliffs on the Angel’s Landing route.
Angels Landing Here we come!
I didn’t hike with Jeff and Chuck to the very end. I stopped at Hogsback. They conquered the landing. I was happy to wait for them and not tackle the chains.
Entering Zion Wilderness
After the shutdown, visitors were not officially allowed into the park. We explored Kolob Canyon and Spring Creek, hiked the perimeter of the Kolob reservoir, and learned a great deal about the “BLM Hikes” (Bureau of Land Management). We “crept” back into the park and hiked “Watchman trail” but don’t tell anyone. We also did the overland 4X4 with the Zion Adventure Company.
We have lots of great photos in our gallery. Hopefully you’ll check them out. Please let us know if you’ve visited Zion National Park. I was wearing my Dances with Dirt T-Shirt and another Zion visitor recognized it. He participated in the same race. We shared race stories. 🙂 It was fun to meet others from Michigan!