Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Our Utah Adventure: Zion National Park, Day 1, Lower Emerald Pools Trail

This is a continuation of a travel series to Utah.  To start at the beginning, go HERE.

In last week's travel post,  I shared our journey to get to Utah, which took us two and half days.  We arrived in Springdale, Utah around 3:00 pm and after checking into our hotel, we jumped on the shuttle and headed straight to Zion National Park.  When we arrived at the park, it seemed everyone else was leaving.  But going to the park in the evening was actually a great idea because it was over 100 degrees that day!


We were SO EXCITED to arrive in Zion.  This is a National Park I've read so many amazing things about I had to see it for myself to believe it.  Everything I read described it in nothing but beautiful or majestic terms.  And you what?  They were right.  Zion is SO GORGEOUS!  I don't know how many times we would be standing on some look-out with the most breath taking view we had ever seen in our lives and said to each other "Is this real?  It can't be.  It looks like someone painted a scenic background and dropped it from the sky."  When I close my eyes and picture heaven, it looks very much like Zion National Park.


When researching Zion National Park I was overwhelmed because there were so many trails, and I wanted to take them all!  But we were only able to spend two days in Zion (one afternoon, a full day, and the following morning).  I found a blog post titled "8 Spectacular Things To Do At Zion Park" and with careful planning we were able to do five of the activities listed.  Two of the trails on our list were closed due to rock falls, and one of the trails we had no interest in doing because I am afraid of heights (Angels Landing).



The Lower Emerald Pools Trail starts at the Zion Lodge.  It is an easy, gravel paved trail, perfect for non-hikers, the elderly, or small children.  It is 1.2 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 70 feet.

When the shuttle drops you off at the lodge, you cross the street and the first thing you will see is a bridge and these magnificent views of the canyon.




After two and half days in the car, and the late start to our day, we thought an easy trail would be best.  We sure enjoyed soaking in all the beauty while we stretched our legs.


Even though the trail is easy, it's cool to be at the bottom of these amazing rock formations.  My best advice for anyone visiting Zion is to take hikes where you can experience the depths of the canyon as well as the heights.  Being in the bottom of a canyon surrounded by the majestic rock formations can be just as amazing as the scenic views from top.


We were so excited to see our first mule deer sipping water in the lower emerald pool.  By the end of our stay in Zion we had seen so many mule deer we didn't even blink when we saw them.  They are very tame so you can get very close to them before they run away.  We even spotted mule deer visiting people at their camp sites.




This is the end of the trail to the Lower Emerald Pools.  There use to be a Middle Emerald Pool Trail (but it's closed indefinitely due to rock fall), and there is also an Upper Emerald Pool Trail.  The Upper Emerald Pool Trail was closed when we were there (also due to rock fall) so all we were able to do was the lower one.

Water cascades down the sandstone walls and you walk under it's miss.  The path becomes wet and slippery so there is a railing here for safety.



The views to and from the trail are more worth the hike than the lower pool itself in my opinion.  I loved all the green vegetation which you would not expect to see in a desert climate, but the Virgin River is the cause of that.






After all our years of hiking we finally saw our first rattlesnake!  He was hanging out on an embankment next to the trail.


We were surprised to see some leaves changing color already, but it made for a nice photo.


After we finished the Lower Emerald Pool Trail it was still light enough that we decided we still had time for more!  Rather than get back on the shuttle to take us to the next trail head (what I wanted to do),  hubby decided to take a "short cut" via a horse trail.  šŸ˜   But it ended up being no short cut!  But more on that next week!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!

28 comments:

  1. So beauty place dear! I hope you had fun!
    Have a great day! xx

    La ilusiĆ³n de Nina - http://lailusiondenina.blogspot.com/

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  2. What a natural wonder and a beautiful place to visit! Thanks for sharing all your personal pictures!

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  3. It is so beautiful! I haven't visited that part of the country, the closest was the Grand Canyon more than 20 years ago.
    www.chezmireillefashiontravelmom.com

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    1. It's so beautiful out west. We love it there.

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  4. Such a amazing place. I would like to visit it and your photos are perfect, especially that one with snake.

    New Post - http://www.exclusivebeautydiary.com/2019/10/beauty-of-intuition_9.html

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  5. Enjoyed seeing your pics!! Thanks so much for linking up at the #UnlimitedMonthlyLinkParty 5. Shared.

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  6. That does look so beautiful! I'm not sure I would have wanted to be in the park on a 100 degree day though… I'd much prefer checking out the park when it was just a bit cooler.

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    1. Well, that's why we planned a fall trip, but you can never predict the weather and it was still hot. We never hiked in the heat of the day. We always got up before dawn and hiked in the mornings or the evenings,

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  7. So beautiful. The rattle snake would have freaked me out a bit, but such a beautiful place to hike.

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    1. Although it was my first time seeing a rattlesnake, I've seen so many snakes in my life I wasn't too startled. You really get to know snake before if you're around them much. This one wasn't acting aggressive at all.

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  8. These pictures look amazing. Love the scenery! The rattlesnake looks scary! We heard them in the Badlands but never saw one.
    Can't wait to read more about your adventures.

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    1. Thank you! Yes, the scenery is out of this world. I wasn't afraid of the rattlesnake, I was more afraid for my husband who was getting to close to the rattlesnake.

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  9. This looks so fun! Love the view, nature is just majestic.

    Jessica | notjessfashion.com

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  10. What a lovely place for a hike! The landscapes are so beautiful and it's awesome you saw some animals - although I'm not a huge fan of snakes, haha!

    Hope you're having a great week :)

    Away From Blue

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  11. Zion is on our bucket list. Lots of nice pics and good info. I am pinning your post for future reference!

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    1. Zion should be on everyone's bucket list! Thanks!

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  12. Stunning scenery. The trip of a lifetime. My parents took us all over the western national parks when I was in high school, 1976. It was an amazing trip but I don't remember all of the details, now 45 years later. Wish I could do it all again! Love the photos of the deer drinking from the stream.

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    1. Oh my, yes, you need to take another road trip. Everything is so much closer for you than it is to me.

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  13. Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too!

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