Zion National Park, Utah
May 14, 2015
At 5:27 a.m., some yahoo's car alarm went off.
After tossing and turning, I gave up and got dressed. It was a great excuse to get an earlier start than previously planned.
I shimmied on my clothes and hopped out of the tent. Much to my surprise, I found clear skies. The three of us assembled our day packs and filled up water bottles. Last night, we decided to climb Angels Landing, easily one of the most iconic Zion attractions. The Grotto Trailhead was only a 20-minute drive away.
At 8 a.m., in the cool of morning, we began our five mile hike.
1,500 feet, up, up, up. We climbed.
I enjoyed my time up at the summit. It was just past 9 a.m. and it seemed clear we had beaten the majority of other hikers for the day. We shared the view with only four other people.
It was grand.
After thoroughly enjoying the view, it was time to descend. I snapped a few more photos, applied some sunscreen, and we carefully climbed back down.
15 years ago on a family vacation, my dad and I, along with two other family friends did the same Angels Landing hike. I was stunned to find out how much I remembered from my last trip. My hometown barely looks the same, but each sharp switchback and twisting tree seems to be right were I saw it last.
Refrigerator Canyon was completely in shadow when we set off. On the way down however, the canyon floor was bathed in sunlight. It was a magnificent sight to behold.
As soon as we got back to camp, it began drizzling. Snacks, cribbage board, and Bluetooth speaker in hand, we retreated to the tents and lounged away the remainder of our afternoon.
We walked to town and searched for dinner options; no one was in the mood to cook. Nothing jumped out at anyone, so we settled on some quaint and kitsch diner which was cheap and quiet.
Back at camp, we had a small fire and passed the whiskey bottle around. We chatted until bedtime arrived.