Hi everyone! One more quick post today to try to catch up to real time…
It was quite late in the afternoon when my Antelope tour ended. I didn't feel like staying another night in Page, so onward to Las Vegas is the plan. Google estimates a 5-hour ride to Vegas, which means I'll arrive there at night (and once again break my resolve not to ride at night).
Lake Powell at a distance, circa 2011
I had a small dilemma. There was so much to see in that beautiful country. From Page, Grand Canyon is a short ride south-west. Bryce Canyon is a short ride north-west. Monument Valley is a bit to the east. Zion National Park is just a little bit out of the way. Not to mention, I'm literally a stone-throw's distance away from Lake Powell.
All these great places I've always wanted to visit, and I was going to miss them ALL.
"I'll ride through them next time," I said to myself. But I was afraid there wont be a next time.
I looked at the map, and decided to ride through Zion on the way to Vegas. If I get there fast enough, there might JUST be enough daylight to enjoy a section of the park, before riding hard to Vegas.
So off I went. My ride will take me from the Arizona border into Utah, then south-west to Nevada. Of course not long after entering Utah, the traffic crawls to a stop east of Kanab. "I don't have time for this!", I thought as the shadows started to get really long.
Soon though a couple of F16s streaked low and fast through the skies, burners on -- pretty cool!!! I wish I had my camera out. They were probably from Nellis AFB. (Later I checked the aviation "sectional" maps for the area which showed a Military Training Route parallel to the road I was on). That took my mind off the stop-and-go traffic for a while.
Nearing Zion, where the buffalos roam
It was almost 9pm by the time I arrived at Zion; not much sun left. The Ranger at the gate was a bit surprised to see me arrive. I showed her my Park's Pass and went on my way.
The promised (park)
Lots of wildlife at Zion
Beautiful curvy ride through the park
Night arrived and the moon came out to play. I took a few remaining pictures. I do hope there will be a next time.
A little bit of light remaining
It was 10pm by the time I left Zion. I stopped by a gas station and checked the GPS: 3 hours to Vegas through a couple small mountain ranges. I got there in about 2.5 hours. After Horseshoe Bend, Antelope Canyon, Zion, and now Vegas, I was totally beat! I thought about taking some pictures, but hit the sack instead and slept for like 2 days. Haha!
From Navajo territory to Mormon country to Sin City -- all in a day -- I have to admit I have nothing to complain about!