ZION NATIONAL PARK

October 2005

I had six very active days in Zion, but this time no photographs happened.  That's OK.  It was a great week, and good adventure is the point anyhow.  Sometimes when an area is first explored, the thing I take away is how and when to visit in the future, so time-of-day or time-of-year is more conducive to a successful photograph.  Regardless, a previous visit in '96 had yielded many great images.

On day one I climbed up to Angels Landing and continued most of the way up to the West Rim Spring.  Day two was a long descent of the Left Fork of North Creek, through the Subway, which I had not seen before.  At the trailhead I met Bob May from Salt Lake City, and his sons Tyson and Bryce.  With four of us, and two vehicles, we could do a shuttle, and begin our trip at the north end, descending the canyon.  It would have been near impossible to do this alone.  We set up three rappels and had to swim two deep and very cold pools.  Each of these little obstacles took time to plan, set up, and get four people through.  My mates were willing to wait while I set up the Hasselblad, especially in the Subway, but I chose not to.  It will be there still when I return.  As it was, we made our final ascent to the car in the dark.

The third day was stormy, and was good timing as I needed a rest.  On day four I started up the Virgin River Narrows, but found the footing treacherous.  The previous day's rain had caused the river to rise considerably, and even worse, it was the color of chocolate.  Since most of the route up through the Narrows is in the river, this presented a real problem.  I hiked to the Emerald Pools instead, which was a first for me.  Not very photogenic, really.

On the last day of this little trip, I ventured up the Right Fork of North Creek.  Don't remember why, but something had suggested it to me.  The route was tough and very brushy, and maybe not one I will do again.  Zion is such a great place for adventure.  This was my third visit, and surely not the last.