Setting off from Kanab in the early morning, our day was filled with anticipation as we embarked on a grand adventure, visiting two iconic national parks in Utah: Bryce Canyon and Zion. With a total distance of 400 kilometers, we planned to immerse ourselves in the captivating beauty of these natural wonders before returning to our peaceful wooden cabin at the entrance of Kanab.
Our route began along the scenic Route 89, which meandered through a wide, flat, and verdant valley parallel to the meandering Sevier River. The picturesque landscape accompanied us throughout the journey, setting the stage for the magnificent sights that awaited us.
Leaving Route 89, we turned onto Route 12, leading us to the breathtaking Red Canyon. This enchanting destination treated us to awe-inspiring rock formations painted with vibrant hues. We paused along the way, following the recommendations of our guide, Delfi, to fully appreciate the wonders of the north side of the canyon.
As we continued our ascent, we reached Rainbow Point, situated at an altitude of over 2,800 meters. Even in late spring, remnants of snow graced the landscape, adding a touch of winter magic. The expansive vistas from this vantage point left us speechless, as we marveled at the vastness of Bryce Canyon National Park spread out before us.
Descending from the heights, we journeyed further into the park, greeted by the spectacular amphitheaters formed by nature. These formations, composed of thousands of hoodoos or red rock spikes, grew increasingly awe-inspiring as we ventured deeper into the park. Among them, Bryce Point’s grand amphitheater commanded our attention, captivating us with its sheer size and magnificence. We took our time there, simply absorbing the beauty of nature and appreciating the intricacies of its sculpted wonders.
Returning to Mt. Carmel Junction, we replenished our energy with a delicious meal before embarking on the next leg of our journey. Taking the remarkable Route 9, we entered Zion National Park, where a world of surreal rock formations awaited us. The red track wound through a valley adorned with unique and astonishing geological features, unlike anything we had ever seen before. The landscape seemed to defy logic, leaving us in awe of nature’s artistic prowess.
Passing through two tunnels carved into the rock, only accommodating small vehicles, we descended into the depths of the gorge. Arriving at the visitor center, we boarded the shuttle bus, which navigated the narrow and winding Virgin River gorge. The bus made eight stops along the way, allowing us to explore the wonders of the park at our own pace.
Eager to venture further, we embarked on a hiking trail that followed the meandering Virgin River, leading us to the renowned Narrows. Walking alongside the tranquil waters, surrounded by towering cliffs, we felt a deep sense of connection with nature. The beauty and serenity of this place were truly unparalleled.
With hearts full of unforgettable memories, we prepared to bid farewell to Utah, a state that had welcomed us with open arms. Tomorrow, we would venture to Arizona to witness the grandeur of the Grand Canyon before continuing our journey to the vibrant city lights of Las Vegas, Nevada.
As we reflected on the day’s experiences, we couldn’t help but feel grateful for the opportunity to explore these remarkable national parks. The majestic beauty of Bryce Canyon and the otherworldly landscapes of Zion had left an indelible mark on our souls, reminding us of the power and grandeur of the natural world.