Thursday, September 12, 2013

Observation Point & Hidden Canyon - Zion National Park - 9/8/13

View from Observation Point in Zion National Park

Zion Canyon from the Upper Switchbacks Cut Into Rock Wall

 The last two hikes of the weekend involved around twenty hikers. While ten hikers hiked Hidden Canyon, another seven hikers or more hiked Observation Point. The Observation Point hikers set out an hour earlier than the Hidden Canyon hikers but they were all on the same trail to begin with. The two hikes started at the Weeping Rock shuttle stop in Zion National Park. The first set of switchbacks got hearts and lungs racing up the side of the canyon wall.

Sign Directing Hikers on First Set of Switchbacks

Hidden Canyon Hikers

 The Hidden Canyon hikers turned off of the trail at a switchback and began a short hike over to a canyon nearby; "hidden" since the canyon is hanging up between walls high in the cliffs. There was a chain involved and Tim Borem, the coordinator gives us these words. On the Weeping Rock/Hidden Canyon hike we started with 10 hikers and two hikers had their minds made up prior to the hike they were stopping at the chains where the exposure started getting bad. Otherwise everyone else faced their fears and went beyond the chains. We also went up the Canyon a bit; but it started raining and I made an executive decision to turn back. I thought it might not be a good idea to keep going in the rain having to come back over the chain area with the rocks wet.

But everyone had a good time... ~ TIM
Echo Slot Canyon

Mike Climbs Up Through Echo Canyon

 The hikers on the Observation Point hike spread out and accomplished the hike quickly. A few of the hikers ended up at the view point at the same time and took some photos. While they were there, they had to deal with a few brave chipmunks! It wasn't until they were on their way back down that a steady rain began.

Chip and Dale

 The descent went quickly but safely on the wet rocks. Mike OC doesn't mess around when the threat of thunder is in the air! This was the last hike to check in for the weekend and everyone was satisfied that they had done as much hiking as they could do for this weekend in one of our most beautiful and hiker-friendly national parks of the U.S.

Trail Through Echo Canyon and Upper Switchbacks

Descent Through Echo Slot Canyon

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