This past week was spring break, and since I’m a poor college student and I don’t have money to go on cool trips, I decided to spend my week in southern Utah exploring some of the trails and creating my own Instagram hashtag (#hikesouthernutah). I spent two days in Snow Canyon State Park and two days in Zion National Park and it was all glorious.
I wasn’t really much of a hiker before moving to Cedar City for school but now there is nothing I love more than trekking on paths I haven’t been on before and seeing where they take me. The first hike I went on, in Snow Canyon, was called Three Ponds – a two hour adventure through lots of sand that lead to a gorgeous shoot-off canyon containing three sandstone holes that fill with water. Not exactly what I envisioned from the name “Three Ponds” but it was still beautiful.
The second hike was Hidden Canyon, a three hour climb in Zion National Park. I went with some friends and we tried to find a hike that none of us had been on. Hidden Canyon was the winner. The trail ascends 850 feet in less than a mile and we were definitely all breathing hard, but it was worth it for the soft sands of the canyon and the awesome free standing arch at the end. It’s not one of the most popular hikes in Zion but I would do it again in a heartbeat!
For my third hike and second trip to Snow Canyon I chose the Whiterocks path. It’s a thin, not often traveled trail that teased us by winding close to the white mountain and then shying away. Finally, though, it brought us on top of the hill to a fantastic view of the whole spectrum of colors that make up Snow Canyon.
The fourth and final hike was the famous Angels Landing. Even though this is one of the most well known and most popular hikes in the state, I had never done it despite living in Cedar City for the past three years. I like to say I never had the chance to do it… but honestly, I was terrified out of my mind. Last week, though, I decided to face my fears and it was so worth it. The switchbacks were killer, the trail was thin in places, and my knees ached on the way down, but the view at the top was unlike any other. And really, it’s not as scary as everyone tells you it is.
Even though I didn’t see a beach or the streets of Las Vegas over spring break, it was amazing to explore and appreciate the beautiful place where I live. Moral of the story? Take some time to get out there and #hikesouthernutah.