I have finally made it to the region we call the Canyons! My trips in the region will include Bryce Canyon, Zion Canyon, the Grand Canyon and Capitol Reef. It is hot as hell in St. George, but surprisingly not as bad in the parks, so that is making everything better for your girl who is constantly sweaty. I’ve been here now for two weeks and went on my FAM and one trip and things are great in this region.
In Backroads, the Canyons are affectionately referred to as Hell, but it is truly one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Before getting here I had gone 2 weeks without a day off and was looking forward to 5 days on my own to familiarize myself with the region. Turns out 5 days alone can drive you a bit crazy, but that wasn’t the only thing that went wrong. Luckily, the first 3 days were amazing. Being paid to go beautiful places and hike is something I’ll never get tired of.
My first day I went to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. Some may know that the Grand Canyon is one of the most visited National Parks, but about 90% of those visitors are hitting up the South Rim. The North Rim, therefore, is much less crowded and still just as breathtaking. Though we can’t do much hiking with guests in the park, I still checked out the first few miles of the Kaibab Trail and I was not disappointed. It descends into the canyon with stunning views at every step. The only thing that may taint your view of the hike is the almost constant smell of mule droppings. Oops.
Day 2 took me to Zion – a place I have wanted to go for years, and really the main reason I had preferenced the Canyons for over a year. Zion Canyon is epic. Fortunately and unfortunately, visitors can’t drive through the canyon on their own, relying instead on a free shuttle system. This is awesome for the environment of the canyon, and keeps traffic from being out of control, but the line for the shuttle can be compared to a Disney attraction. I hiked the Riverside Walk and some of The Narrows. I was so surprised by hiking The Narrows. In pictures, it looks like a calm river you casually wade through, but in reality the bottom is covered with slick stones, and the water is moving a lot faster than I thought. Thankfully I avoided a day with flash flood potential, but it’s currently monsoon season down here, so guests may face issues being able to hike up the river.
Day 3 I went to Bryce Canyon and was not disappointed with the view of the hoodoos. I was, however, disappointed with the weather. I spent a full day, with the exception of one hike, in the van, because it was freezing cold and raining!
On Day 4, I woke up with a light rash on my whole torso (too much information?) – likely an allergic reaction to an unknown substance. I went to the doctor, and they put me on two different steroids, and advised me to avoid tight clothing, heat and sweating – all things I had to do that day in order to FAM Capitol Reef. I was able to do most of what I had to, and 3 days of steroids later I was all good.
I have 3 more trips in the Canyons, and can’t wait to explore them more before I head to Tuscany!