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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Last Vacation for 2012

I didn't post for a few months so I am just going to catch up.  These are the vacation photos from our trip to southern Utah and Las Vegas.
We decided that since we have lived in Utah for almost 11 years and have never made the trek to Southern Utah, it was about time we did. On October 14th we packed up and drove to Zion National Park.  It's only 4 hours away.  Why haven't we done this before?  I was going to call my niece Jem who lives there when we got to Mesquite  but soon realized I did not have her phone numbers or her address.  It was 2:00 in the afternoon so I am sure nobody was home anyway, but I couldn't even leave a message.  Sorry time.  We stopped at a casino which was beautiful on the outside with palm trees and beautiful fountains, but we had to walk through the smokey casino to get to the restroom and boy did  that walk stink.  We grabbed an ice cream cone and got the heck out of there. 

We next drove to Cedar City to see where my neighbor Brenden goes to college and then on to Saint George where we toured the Brigham Young winter home.  I loved seeing this old home and the yard.  Brigham Young liked things to look beautiful even if they were made of inexpensive wood so he had craftsmen paint the pine in the home to look like oak and marble.

Brigham was hoping the Saints could be self sufficient by planting mulberry trees.  They had silk worms that ate the leaves of this tree and they did produce silk but it became too expensive to continue.  The tree split in half many years ago and a tree surgeon put a brace in it and said it would only live a few more years but that was 40 years ago.
They also planted cotton but it was too labor intensive and they could buy cotton on the open market at a cheaper price so this too was ended.  They do still plant cotton at the home so the tourists can see what it looks like.

 On to Zion National Park to spend the night.  we got a motel right in the park.  The shuttle bus picks you up right at the motel and drives you to all the spots you want tot go.  You can walk it or get back on the bus every few minutes.  I never got tired of the red rocks and majestic mountains.
The Virgin River runs right at the end of the walking path.  If you want to walk further, you have to wade the river.  We stopped right here but many did not.  The water was a little too dirty for me.

As we were walking along the path, this guy walked right in front of us.  For some reason I was not afraid and just took photos. Wayne was obviously not afraid either.   My camera's lens was set to the wrong setting so the photos are blurry, but you get the idea, and you can see it's size.

This was the lodge we stayed in, and our room (which was at the back of the lodge), had a little deck that was right next to the mountain behind. It was quiet and peaceful and serene.
 They are very concerned about keeping the park litter free and the environment green so the rooms had a recycle bin as well as a trash can.

The style was rustic but classy Craftsman style and was very nice.

It was fun to see plants that seemed to sprout right out of the rocks.
I love the look of old fences and natural growth.
On our hike out we came across this thing.  We didn't know what it was.  It was very long and crawled like an ant but had the butt of a bee.  It scared me more than the tarantula.  It was probably about 2 " long.
This deer must be so used to people that it didn't even look up  when we passed.
Now this is a mystery.  On the way out I snapped this photo.  I is a tree covered with tennis shoes.
And of course, I couldn't pass up this photo of a field with dozens of ostriches.
Now on to Las Vegas!