2015 Zion Bucket List

You are someone full of adventure. A free spirit willing to take on the most epic hikes, crazy adventures, and wildest bucket list ideas. Right?
You are planning to visit and have a 2015 Zion Bucket List…right?  Listed below are some of the epic things we would like to see you do this year.

BUT FIRST! Here are some observations we made (from your social media accounts) in 2014!


 

Angels Landing– You hiked it. Then you hiked it again. We saw amazing selfies, scary places to hangout, and you wiggled your way up Walter’s Wiggles.

The Narrows– You mastered it. Consider yourself Narrows royalty with your hiking scepter.

The Subway– You know….that Subway picture you took this year?  The one on the bend, with greenish blue waters creating beautiful pools?

Weeping Rock/Emerald Pools– Let us guess? You opened your mouth and caught some of the thousand year old water too? Did you also see a cute little animal? Glad you didn’t feed it!

Watchman– That bridge is going to need some reinforcement from all of you standing on it!


Let us suggest a new viewpoint for 2015!

Enter ‘Observation Point.’

Observation Point and Angels Landing

Spend a few hours hiking up a steep mountainside to one of the best viewpoints offered in Zion National Park. Complete with sheer drop offs and eye popping scenery looking down into Zion Canyon. A maintained path zigzags its way up the steep mountainside beside familiar reddish Navajo sandstone before venturing through Echo Canyon, a deep gorge filled with water gnawed sandstone pockets. Near the top of the trek you will see white rock; this layer is known as the Temple Cap formation.  At the trails end, looking down into the canyon is a spectacular display of stone sculptures contrasted by the bluest of skies. At the end, the West Rim Trail can be seen to the right as well as lofty Angels Landing.
Whats that? You can see ABOVE Angels Landing!? You got that right…
Just like that, Observation Point becomes the epic hike you yearned for.

Need any more convincing?

If your goal is to get away from people,Observation Point sees only a fraction of visitors of Angels Landing.You actually look down on Angels Landing across the canyon.If you continue further up the west rim trail past Scouts Lookout, you will get away from the masses that flock there to start the final push to the top of the Landing.

Have you been to. seen, or heard any of these?

 
The Sentinel
The Pulpit

Did you know about these?

900+ species of Flora
288 Bird species
68 mammal species

We would love to show you all the pictures, give you detailed explanations, and show you how to best see them, but that would eliminate all the fun of discovery!

These places and things all exist in Zion National Park, and we want you to discover them! Join us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Google+ and share your discoveries with the hashtags

#ThereIsAPlace #VisitZionCanyon

Zion National Park is 229 square miles. Lets see more of it in 2015!!
Good luck and go make the experience of a lifetime!

Angel of the Morning

Just took a really nice solo hike this morning up to Scout Lookout in Zion National Park. What a great way to start your day.

 Scout Lookout is the junction point on the Angels Landing trail where casual hikers settle in and enjoy the view, while the more daring grip the chains and continue on to the pinnacle of Angels Landing. I’ve been to the pinnacle several times – but today wasn’t about reaching the farthest point. I was actually looking for my sunglasses.

 Two days ago my 11-year-old son and I took advantage of some free time and spent the afternoon together in Zion National Park. It was one of those treasured father-son afternoons where just the two of us got to enjoy the incredible scenery and share in some rewarding conversation. Zion is a perfect setting for communication. The towering cliffs create a sort of reverence that prompts you open up and reveal your inner feelings. Hiking the trails provides a rich supply of intriguing twists and powerful vistas that spur the imagination.

Zion National Park Entrance - Angels Landing HikingIt’s the middle of winter, but winters are mild here, and even though there were patches of snow left over from a recent storm, the hiking weather was ideal, and the snow added a new dimension that you rarely see in this area. We had a fantastic afternoon together, and we committed to try to make it a monthly event. The only glitch was when I left my prescription sunglasses on a rock at Scout Lookout before we started the hike down. I didn’t realize they were missing until we were at the bottom and by then it was getting dark. So today, I decided to take an early morning hike to see if by some chance the glasses were still where I left them.

 What I learned is that the 2-mile trek is a perfect little starter for a great day. The morning solitude was refreshing and the views on the hike are unreal. “That’s a long way to go for a pair of glasses,” I was told. But even though I’d just done the hike just 36-hours earlier, I wasn’t the least bit disappointed.

 From the trailhead at the Grotto Picnic Area, you can reach Scout Lookout in an hour or so if you just keep a steady pace. I had the trail to myself, except for a couple of deer who jumped from the path and gave me a curious look as I passed by. Up a little further, a small group of “20-something-year-olds” gave me a smile as they jogged their way down from an early morning flashlight run. When I reached the summit it was just me, the mountain, and the view. Nice!

 The Angels Landing Trail is one of the most famous and thrilling hikes in Zion National Park. (See more pictures) The trail is paved and well maintained up to Scout Lookout, and the vista from the 1000-foot sheer drop is breathtaking. You don’t have to go to the top to have a great experience, but if you continue up the narrow ridge to Angels Landing, the trail is a different story. In that section, hiker’s work their way up a jagged spine with the help of anchored support chains that are attached along precarious sections. The view at the top is a 360 degree masterpiece.

 

I didn’t find my sunglasses this morning, but it didn’t seem to matter. I was really just reconfirming the memories of a great day in a great place with a great boy.

 

Top 5 Reasons St. George is Utah’s Newest Mountain Biking Hub

Mountain Biking St. George

Ti Peng Rides while visiting Zion National Park in November 2014.

St. George is already on the map

for sought-after destinations like Zion National Park, Snow Canyon and Tuacahn…and now you can add world-class mountain biking to that list.
How did St. George jump to the top of the list of premier mountain biking destinations? Much of the new status is thanks to 15 years of work to build more than 350 miles of single-track and double-track trails. The work continues this fall as crews work to build additional trails near Quail Creek Reservoir.

But the trails are just the beginning of what makes St. George the newest mountain biking mecca. Here are the top five reasons why St. George should be your next mountain biking getaway:

1. Year-round riding:

St. George Utah Mountain Biking

Professional Triathlete- Ben Hoffman spends time mountain biking in St. George Utah

St. George’s Mojave Desert environment allows for year-round mountain biking on trails that offer striking vistas of Zion National Park, Snow Canyon State Park, and the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve. In addition to being open 365 days a year, St. George’s mountain biking trails are seemingly private and offer an abundance of solitude.

2. Unique Topography:

Those wanting trails with lots of personality, challenges and variety have come to the right place. Southern Utah’s brutal-yet-beautiful desert provides the best of both worlds: extreme technical spots alongside family friendly areas. The St. George area has become particularly attractive to mountain bikers because of the purpose-built trails that take riders to the top of red rock mesas. Gooseberry Mesa, near Hurricane, was dedicated as a National Recreation Trail in 2006 and has quickly become a crowd favorite.

3. Convenient location: 

Convenience also plays a big part in drawing mountain bikers to St. George. Riders can quickly link to miles of trails right from town. Being located on Interstate 15—with access to the city’s municipal airport and the international airport in Las Vegas—allows visitors to maximize time on the trails.

4. Community support: 

People from all over the world are discovering southern Utah’s rare landscape and unmatched beauty. In November, the annual 25 Hours in Frog Hollow mountain bike race attracted participants from 17 counties. The race is supported by the area’s renowned supply of volunteers who help out at sporting events like IRONMAN and the Huntsman World Senior Games. In addition, non-profit groups have donated time and money to build and maintain the mountain biking trails.

5. Access to National Parks: 

St. George’s mountain biking trails are surrounded by a paradise of oversized adventure, including desert reserves, 11 golf courses, 200-million-year-old dinosaur tracks and some of the nation’s most popular national parks. Zion National Park is located just 40 miles from St. George. For families looking to cross a few items off their bucket list, Zion is a must-see and must-do destination—whether it’s taking a day trip on horseback, hiking the narrows in waist deep water, or camping out under a star-filled sky.

 

GOPR0611About St. George:

St. George offers “everything from A to Zion” for families and adventure seekers. The celebrated area offers easy access to Zion National Park and several dedicated wilderness and recreation areas for hiking, climbing, cycling and trail running. A stroll through the city’s picturesque downtown provides boutique shopping and eclectic dining. For those seeking the neon lights, Las Vegas is only a 90-minute drive away. To easily plan your trip, visit: http://mytrip.atozion.com.

 

 

See what others are saying about the mountain biking in St. George!

St. George News

Fox 13 Now

The Spectrum

SU Independent

Check this link – For a list of Utah Mountain Biking Guides, Outfitters, and Shops.

Photography:
Ti Peng Photography
Larry Rosa Photography
St. George Tourism Office

5 ‘Bright’ Ideas for Celebrating Christmas in St. George

See what we did there?

The Christmas season is full of cheer and bright lights in St. George Utah. Activities are happening at every turn, and colorful lights adorn the city streets.
Check out just a few of the Christmas festivities, and things to do for Christmas in St George and surrounding area.


*EDIT*
Hedgehog Electric has put together an amazing map of all the areas to see great Christmas lights! Check out the St George Area Christmas Light Map and go for a drive!


 

1. Temple Lightsst-george-christmas-10

The St. George temple – owned by the LDS church is already a spectacle on it’s own. As you drive north from Vegas or south from SLC on I-15, drivers are always greeted by a glowing white structure that all but says “Welcome to St. George!”  Check out the lights on the temple grounds and nearby neighborhoods. It’s one of the highlights of the Christmas season here.

2. Hot Chocolate and LightsChristmas in St George Utah in the City Center 

We may not get much snow…if any, and it may not get very cold in the day, but nothing says you can’t still do some hot cocoa and see the lights at Town Square and surrounding area.

3. Tuacahn – Christmas in the CanyonTuachan for Christmas - Live Nativity 

Tuacahn– an already impressive amphitheater, puts on a Christmas display worthy of the books. With a live nativity scene– camels, sheep, cows, etc included, and Christmas lights as good as anywhere else, it’s a must visit location during the holiday season.

4. Impressive Neighborhood lightsstrickland

Multiple neighborhoods in the area go all out with Christmas lights and scenes! Some of these homes pair up with radio stations and their Christmas lights blink and flash to your favorite Christmas tunes! Take a drive and find some of the most fun neighborhoods around!

 

5. Dickens FestivalDickens-Santa

Held annually at the Dixie Convention Center, the Dickens Festival  will surely get you in the holiday spirit! Live music, Christmas vendors, and even Santa making his grand appearance! Swing by the Dixie Center, ride a train, eat some chestnuts on an open fire, kettle corn and more!

 

If this isn’t enough, check out the Events Calendar and see if there is something more your style or watch this Post by City of St. George.

Autumn Adventures

Autumn is a gorgeous time of year in St. George as well as Zion National Park – Springdale Utah.  Our friends at TravelMindset and Vagabond3.com are here and exploring the area with virgin eyes!
Follow along as they experience the beauty, the excitement, and adventure that happens here in the Fall. While many other cities and adventure destinations turn to snow or just shut down entirely in the adventure department, St. George and Zion are just getting started!

 

Trying out new restaurants, hotels, and even joining in on local Christmas festivities!

A little ATV action out at Sand Hollow State Park!