Mother's day weekend in Zion National Park was a quiet one, and the weather was just too perfect not to take advantage of our time in Southern Utah. Brittney and I had breakfast and took the shuttle from Springdale to the visitor's center and then into the actual park. My legs felt surprising good after the race so we decided to hike Angel's Landing, a 1.1 mile hair-raising climb that follows a narrow ridge to the summit.
Don't look mom, I'm about to crawl up the edge of that cliff! A chain rail guides you up an exposed section of the mountain with a drop off of over 1,000 feet on either side in route to the top. Since 2004, 6 people have died attempting this very hike, as stated by the National Park signage. There's nothing better than a huge payoff after a tough trek, and our reward was an incredible view of the park and river valley below. A quick bite to eat, and back down we went in hopes to get ahead of the crowds making their ascent. Once we reached the trailhead, Brittney and I continued hiking past the Grotto to the river near Zion Lodge where I stopped to soak my legs in the icy water. Talk about refreshing! We had lunch at the lodge, then headed back to Springdale for a relaxing afternoon by the pool. Once I had a chance to really think about what we had accomplished, I would have to put the Angel's Landing hike in my all time top ten treks next to Mount Whitney, Cactus to Clouds, Rim to Rim, Cochise Stronghold, Pioneer Peak, and the Mount of the Holy Cross. It's a true American Classic, and we enjoyed every minute of it.