Friday, September 15, 2017

May 25, part three, Zion National Park -- Kolob Canyons

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Here is a link to the interactive expedition map.  I figured out how to alphabetize the "sites," and I added a couple of restaurants.



In the previous post, we had lunch at the Kolob Canyons view point (at the end of the road into the Kolob Canyons section of Zion National Park).  Then we started a hike out to a view point.  This is taken part of the way through the hike.  The gray specks about in the center of the left side of this next image (a ways in from the edge) are cars in the parking lot where the trail starts.



See?  Cars.



The weather was clouding up, and we didn't want to get caught away from shelter if there was lightning.  Some of the party headed quickly out to the end of the trail.  Some preferred to dawdle and take photographs on the way back to the car.

Lichens.



Flowers.










Bug, which I did not see until I got this on "the big screen."  This is a closer crop of just a bit above and left of the center of the previous image.  The bug looks like a petal at a funny angle (which is why I noticed it -- that strange angle, compared to the petals).



The weather looks ok to the east.....



Cactus flower buds.



I like the contrast between that big fat bud and the barely-there buds and flowers of the other plant behind it.  That cactus is armed for bear, and that little plant behind it looks totally vulnerable, in comparison.  Maybe this kind of plant prefers to grow next to cactus with huge spines, so it gets some protection from the cactus's defenses?  Or maybe this one just got lucky....




Another bug I didn't see until I got these pics on "the big screen"........  A pollinator.



Shaggy peeling bark.



Growing from the crack in a rock.





I think this was looking west.....




This is two pics, taken one after the other, one more north and one more south.  I made the two into one by hand.  I believe you'll see a bigger version if you click on the pic.



This next image makes it look like the worst of the weather has just gone over us.  It looks like it might have rained, but I was not aware of any precipitation.  Note parking lot near left edge,



Another tree with shaggy peeling bark.  This looks like it's just begging to be separated into thin fibers.  I wonder what they would be good for......



As much as we didn't want it to thunder over us, we could see that it hadn't rained for a while, and couldn't wish for more dryness for everything trying to grow here....



Purple.




Reunited; in the car; headed back out of the park.  Looking south, from just south of Kolob Canyons view point.


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Thursday, September 14, 2017

May 25, part 2 -- Kolob Canyons

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Here is a link to the interactive expedition map.



Driving up into Kolob Canyons, in Zion National Park.  I believe this is looking south.




I love these info boards that tell me what I'm looking at.  Not so easy to read in this image, alas.

At left, Nagunt Mesa.  Center, Timber Top Mountain.  At right, Shauntavi Butte.


Lots of flowers here and there....




South, again, from a different view point.  I think the point sticking up in front of the rest of the formation at left is Shauntavi Butte.



I believe the formation at left is Nagunt Mesa, and the one at right is Timber Top Mountain.



Nagunt Mesa.



At the end point of the drive into Kolob Canyons, there is a parking lot with picnic tables.  This was our view as we ate lunch.  I think the highest rock in this image is Beatty Point.

The clouds!



Getting ready for lunch, looking at Beatty Point.



This is the spoon that lives in my fanny pack, in case I should suddenly need to eat yogurt.  I bought it in a euro store (like a dollar store, only in Europe) in Venice, Italy.  That's our trusty cooler behind it.



Lunch.





You can take a hike out to a view point. 




Juniper.




I think the pointy point in the center is Beatty Point.  Nagunt Mesa at right.



Nagunt Mesa, then Timber Top at right.



I am not sure, but I think the formation sticking out toward us, at left, is Shauntavi Butte.



Here is a link to the next post about the Grand Canyon trip.

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protect the rainforest -- follow the frog

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This video made me laugh out loud..............



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Monday, September 11, 2017

May 25, part 1 -- Kolob Canyons

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Here is a link to the interactive expedition map.  I added a link for the viewpoint that is as far as you can drive into the Kolob Canyons section of Zion National Park.



The office and the kitchen (for breakfast) in our hotel were not in the same building as our room.

Walking back to the room after breakfast.  There is a place that rents gear for hiking in the river in the park.  (Special footwear, wetsuits, etc.)

This chalked sign is on the pavement outside the door into the rental place.  "Remember your power" is good advice, I think.



I wonder how long it would take to get used to this view in the back yard................




Zion National Park is large, and because we come at it from ground level, instead of from the top of the plateau (as in Bryce), there are places in the park that you have to go outside the park to get to.

We decided to visit the Kolob Canyons part of Zion National Park on the 25th because it was supposed to be hotter than the 26th.  Instead of hiking in Zion on the hotter day, we thought we'd drive, mostly, and walk at higher elevations when we walked.

So we drove out around the southwest corner of the park, and up outside the west side of the park, to get to Kolob Canyons.  The next several pics are places along the way.

I hadn't seen any rock like the very dark gray rock at the top of this hill.



Closer crop.  Very angular.  This does not look like small bits have been falling off (as with the hoodoos in Bryce).  These are large chunks of rock.



Still pleased with what I can often get from a moving car........  Out the side.



Definitely not Michigan.








Looking back toward the expressway from the Kolob Canyons visitors' center parking lot.  That road going over the bridge is the highway.  There aren't that many expressways out here.  There just aren't enough flat places to put them..........



Flowers growing next to the parking lot.



With a leetle teeny bug.



Now we are inside the park.



Unlike Bryce, Zion is really canyons, really carved by real rivers.  Here's a river.



I didn't see any big oak trees in the southwest, but I saw a lot of these shrubby oaks in Zion.





Rocks that look like they started as mud.  Trees on the edge.  And pavement(lower left corner) that matches the red-brown rock.








Scratched-up info board at a view point.




Isn't it cool that GoogleMaps has this level of granularity, even out more or less in the middle of nowhere?  This is the identical parking lot we can see in the previous image.



And, of course, GoogleMaps will scroll out as far as you want.  Here's an image that gives you some idea of an eagle's eye view of the land east of that parking lot.




The camera just doesn't do a good job with exposure when faced into the sun.  I've messed with this, but it's still way too light in the center.



This is a closer crop of the above.  I am thinking about all of these trees, and comparing them to the trees we saw up high at Bryce.  These seem much more secure in their "footing" than the ones at Bryce, for the most part.


Here's a link to the next post about the Grand Canyon trip.

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