After checking out Horseshoe Bend, Zion National park was a short two hour drive to Utah. This was a last minute add in, but I couldn’t resist with it being so close! Luckily there was a campsite that opened up. I thought it was odd that at about 20 miles out my GPS was still saying 45-50 minutes from the destination. As you can see from the featured photo above, the roads wind back and forth. You also enter the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel that is a little over a mile. They only let traffic through one way at a time. Originally, the bridge was created so that Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon could be accessed directly from Zion National Park. I was really excited for the hiking at Zion, and I was surprised at how busy it was. The first trail hiked was called Weeping Rock. It’s a short, paved hike with a steep incline. In 0.2 mi (one way) you ascend 98 feet. This short, paved trail takes you to rock aclove with dripping springs. My favorite part of Zion was all the greenery! Its a unique ecosystem; desert, but also swamplands and there are dripping springs everywhere. Once again, pictures or film cannot do it justice. Here you can see the water dripping over the rock alcove. After getting warmed up at Weeping Rock, I was excited to hike next to the Virgin River during the Riverside Walk. This trail is 2.2 miles roundtrip and has little change in elevation (57 ft). There’s lots of shade and its paved for the most part. It leads to a hike called the “Narrows,” where you follow the Virgin River though the most narrow part of the Zion Canyon. In order to hike the Narrows trail, you have to walk upstream in the Virgin River; they have equipment that you can rent to do so, or you can bring your own. I’d like to go back and do it! This picture above was taken just past the Riverside walk and leading into the Narrows. On the Riverside Walk, the Virgin River is accessible throughout the hike. On the way back, there were hikers taking breaks on the rocks, enjoying the coolness of the water!