After our day of exploring Bryce Canyon, we moved down the highway to Zion National Park for our last evening in Utah. In the morning, we learned about some of the spectacular geology of the wonderful park, and our students were given several hours of free time to hike in the upper canyon. I'd like to show you an entire album of beautiful pictures of one of our most beautiful national parks, but to tell the unvarnished truth...I was tired and worn out! I had explored Zion four weeks earlier, and on this particular morning, I really wanted a...normal breakfast. Mrs. Geotripper and I went down to Springdale, and while the others were struggling up Angel's Landing, or slogging up the river in the Virgin Narrows, we sat sipping mocha and luxuriating our way through a couple of delicious breaksfast burritos at the Cafe Soleil. We were also doing something that had been well nigh impossible for most of the last two weeks: we went online. I even managed a short post that day.
Dinosaur Trackway museum in St. George. Then things kind of fell apart...
2012 had been a horrific drought year, and for much of our trip, brushfires had been a companion, either in plain sight on the distant hills, or far beyond the horizon. On this day, the fires were a lot closer. It was burning next to I-15 between St. George and Cedar City. And it brought traffic to a dead standstill in the 105 degree heat. Ultimately one of our vans stalled (the food van!), and one of our party ended up in the emergency room with smoke inhalation problems. We were three hours away from our destination and the sun was setting. Ultimately, we left the van and several of our party in Cedar City for the night, and the rest of us headed to Great Basin National Park, arriving at our campsite around midnight.
Boundary Peak is a bit higher, but it's mostly in California), a forest that included the oldest living thing on the planet (a bristlecone pine), Nevada's only glacier, and a marvelous limestone cavern: Lehman Cave.
I hope you've enjoyed this blog series! I'll be trying to get all the posts compiled in one place if you are at all interested in catching the flow of the journey.