Km’s Pedalled – 59.5 km’s
Destination – Glendale (Just East of Zion Bryce Campground)
Some Notes – A beautiful sunny day as usual. The switchbacks getting out of Zion National Park weren’t so bad. I thought they would be way worse. There are no bikes allowed through the one mile long Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel. It took almost an hour of trying to thumb a ride to finally get picked up to go through the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel.
Parting views of Zion National Park
The switchback up to Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel
Heather & Lacy turned around from already coming through the tunnel (into the park) to pick me up and bring me through. They were local to Springdale and knew of a few friends that had trouble getting a ride through the tunnel. Because of RV’s and campers, they only let a single lane through the tunnel moving in one direction at a time. It was very busy on the other side of the tunnel so they had to drive me a few more miles down the road. Those few miles were unbelievably beautiful.
I posted 352 photos from Zion National Park to Flickr.
FYI to other cyclists. If you are on a bike and get a ride through the tunnel get your ride/driver to drop you off immediately after passing through the tunnel if the driver can find a parking space.
Most of the whole day was an incline. There was an occasional downhill or flat area but mostly up. Fortunately, the climbs were reasonable the whole day. The evening is definitely cooler than I have become use to. The day time temperatures were perfect for riding.
Utah is beautiful wherever you are
Zion NP gets 6 stars out of 5. Just make sure that you have campsite reservations. And bring 100% of everything that you need as Springvale looks extremely expensive.
Same camping spot, different photo angles
Km’s Pedalled – 53 km’s
Destination – Red Rock Canyon Campground
Some Notes – A cooler night than I have become used to. I tossed and turned all night. I had many different dreams all night. None of them turned out good until I woke up and realized that thankfully I was dreaming. I slept in this morning and just laid in my tent. Lying in my tent in the morning is one of my favorite activities. I am so lazy. I have to say, now that I have been in this new tent (Big Agnes Copper Spur tent) for a few nights I really like it.
I proofread my magazine article that I wrote while in Las Vegas once again. I need to submit it very shortly.
I did not anticipate things as cold as they are. Turning onto Hwy 12 / Red Rock Canyon I was stuck in a bit of a snow storm. They are calling for a low of -6C tonight. With the snow blowing all around I pulled into the closed campground for an early night. When my tent was half up the sun started to shine again. I am not sure if I called it a night too soon. I had the tent up, super made and in my sleeping bag by 7:45pm.
Red Rock Canyon
I am also entering the Dixie National Forest. [Based on the signage that I saw over the next week and longer the whole area that I biked through Utah was part of the Dixie National Forest.]
Km’s Pedalled – 42 km’s hiked & biked
Destination – Bryce Canyon National Park boundary
Some Notes – A cold overcast day with a high of 5C and a low of -6C. It feels like winter. Last night I bundled up with everything I had and kept reasonably warm considering how cold it got. I think I ditched my cold weather clothing too soon.
At the Bryce Canyon NP Visitors Center my rain jacket dropped from my bike. Unbelievably it was still there when I returned almost 45 minutes later.
Bryce Canyon National Park
It snowed in the park for about an hour. So, there was nothing to see. Then things cleared up exposing the entire canyon. Oh my goodness what a sight. I was able to hike around Sunset Point and Navajo Loop and Inspiration Point for many hours. The views are stunning and unbelievable. And then the snow came back, wetter and harder. I made super and edited today’s photos under a covered area in the park until 9pm.
Bryce Canyon National Park
I did not foresee these winter temperatures at all. I am looking forward to dropping in elevation as soon as possible. I froze my hands biking to the park boundary to set up my camp. Stealth camping is super easy between Bryce City and the park.
Km’s Pedalled – 21.5 km’s hike & bike
Destination – Bryce Canyon NP boundary (same spot)
Some Notes – I am not sure how much snow there was last night but I continually heard snow slide off my tent in the night.
Bryce Canyon National Park
I hiked Sunrise Point and part of Fairyland Loop Trail, Queens Garden and Peek-a-boo trail. A very long day of hiking. I can’t believe how many people I ended up talking to because of my fully loaded bike. Quite a few were from Canada living in the US now. I was even handed $30.
I also saw and was able to photograph an Eastern Blue bird.
When the sun started going down the temperatures dropped quickly. When the sun is out it’s nice. When the clouds cover the sun it feels like winter here. They are calling for a low of -7C tonight.
But it was a good day today. Everyday in Utah is a good day. Tomorrow I move on. I posted 484 photo from Bryce Canyon NP to Flickr.
Km’s Pedalled – 52.5 km’s
Destination – 28 km’s from Escalante
Some Notes – A cold long night last night. I slept very little, until morning. Thank goodness it’s Sunday and technically a day of rest. I slept in very late until the sun finally warmed me. Two national parks completed. Down the road I head.
On my way out of Bryce Canyon I found a Tilley hat!!!
Just before the town of Tropic I did the short hike to Mossy Cave (part of Bryce Canyon NP).
Moss growing in the desert
Overall a beautiful day weather wise to be biking. After the initial decline in elevation and a fair bit of flat level biking it was back to a slow climb. Then a larger climb and then right at the end of the day a massive climb. I guess the only good part to the massive climb was that I was able to complete it at the end of the day and not discover this climb tomorrow morning. I prefer not having a big climb first thing in the day. It kind of takes the wind out of my sails for the rest of the day. When the sun went down this evening the temperatures dropped as usual.