Good morning! You all will be happy to know that my swimming class last night went much better than the day before! I feel like I am starting to pull things together and the laps are getting easier. We started practicing the turn at the end of the lane and I have to admit that’s a bit tricky. I feel like a little kid again – trying to do flips underwater and being scared of getting water up my nose. When the instructor was originally showing me how to do the flip I told her that “things were about to get real interesting” ha! I have absolutely no sense of balance or positioning on solid ground let alone in the pool. We were cracking up laughing because I kept kicking off the wall perpendicular to the wall I was supposed to kick off. I have no idea how I got all flip flopped over to the other wall but I did it time after time.
I did update the tri training page this morning with what’s on tap for week 3 (the current week) and I’ll be putting together my week 2 recap later this evening. As a quick side note, I’m diving into the running program tonight which is an adaptation of the Fitness 5k Begginer Training Plan. If you have never ran a 5k or simply want to work on your running, I invite you to follow along with us as we work through this six week plan – I’ll be posting the runs on my Facebook page so you can keep up!
Okay! Back to the recap of our amazing weekend adventure.
We headed out from our hotel in St George and hit up Starbucks on our way out of town – always a great way to start the day. But what was even better than coffee? We saw a sign for helicopter rides and then the helicopter flew right over our truck. We took that as a sign and stopped in at the heli pad to see what was up. Neither Nick or myself had ever been in a helicopter before so we were pretty excited about the idea and bought tickets right away. Our ride was about twenty minutes long and took us over Hurricane, two state parks and a few of the mesa landforms. It was amazing!
If you are staying in St. George or traveling through Hurricane to Zion, I highly recommend stopping in at Zion Helicopter Tours and Rides which is in downtown Hurricane, UT. (couldn’t find a website… )
After enjoying our morning coffee with a side of helicopter, we hit the road to Zion. Cue the reggae
Zion was absolutely amazing! I was even impressed with the shuttle system throughout the park. In an effort to keep traffic at a minimum, there is a large parking lot at the start of the park where you can board a shuttle and then ride to various stops throughout the park.
As you ride the shuttle, there is a broadcast onboard telling you what you are looking at – timed perfectly as you travel through the park. At each stop, the broadcast explains what trails start from this location and any other items of interest. I was really impresssed. I was also impressed that each shuttle stop had a water filling station, bathrooms, and a recycling/garbage center. The whole thing is just very well thought out and orchestrated.
One of the main things we have wanted to do since moving to Utah is the hike at Angel’s Landing. Angel’s Landing is located about half way through the park and is a short, but steep hike to a crazy peak of one of the rock formations.
I guess our old age has turned us into woosies. We pansied out just short of the top! As we were walking we kept asking people if they went all the way up and most said “no” or “not quite” – I sort of judged those people thinking “if you come all this way, why not finish” – that was before I got there and experienced it for myself. We were within 1/4 mile, maybe less, and both Nick and I just decided the risk wasn’t worth it. That’s what having kids has done to us, I suppose
After Angel’s Landing, we decided to ride the shuttle through the rest of the park (the shuttle takes about 80 minutes to get from the start of the park to the last stop and then back to the beginning). Even though we were hungry and pretty tired at that point, we couldn’t help but to be intrigued by all the things the broadcast was describing as we went through the rest of the park.
We couldn’t resist “The Narrows.”
You walk between shear rock walls that are about 1,000 feet tall on both sides of you – walking in the river that created the entirety of Zion Canyon. Apparently, you can walk up-river for about 9-12 miles. We didn’t go nearly that far but for the distance we went each turn up the river offered even more amazing views.
As we were walking back from exploring the narrows, I kept telling Nick how amazing a burger and a cold beer would be – wishing there was a mojito stand around every corner (what, they don’t have those in national parks?! rude.)
Oh, you wanted to see a lovely photo of my chicken burger and not a picture of me stuffing my face – well, bummer for you.
Leaving the park and heading out to our hotel was an adventure all its own so I’m going to break this day into two posts. We just did so much it doesn’t all fit in a nice neat post!
I’m headed off to work now – just a half day and then picking my mom up from the airport!