zion in november

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by dave42, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. Hey Everyone,
    Heading to Zion in mid November...
    any suggestions for an itinerary?
  2. Sorry forgot...
    5 days of fun!
  3. Cold at night; beautiful during the day. I like the area above the tunnel. Go in the canyon right after the tunnel/bridge and walk up stream (down stream will lead you to a very big fall!!!). Further up the red rock with the small evergreens late in the day. You might also go to Snow Canyon State Park, near St. George. Zion Canyon gets light late in the day, so you can sleep late, or find somewhere else to photo. You might go out to Grafton, but I think they have tightened things up and it's hard to photo there now, but watch "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" before you go and enjoy remembering the locale. There's a restaurant I like in Springdale: the Switchback. I also like Flanigans and place with two names: Rock and Sand or something like that. A great place. Enjoy. I've stayed at Flanigans and at the Zion loge. Both are OK. I stayed at another place years ago where the shower in the room next door bubbled up in the sink in my room. I would not go there again!!!
  4. Also try the Kolab Canyons side of Zion especially if you are going to visit Snow Canyon (which I agree is worth a side trip). It's just off of I-15 around the 40 mile marker. Some nice views of the mountains and valleys along a seven mile drive. The views are probably best in the afternoon since you are looking mostly east from the road. There were no crowds when I was in the main part of the park in November a couple of years ago (plus you don't have to take the shuttle bus) and there are never crowds in the Kolab Canyons side.
  5. If you're going to try and hit the fall colors in Zion, I was there last year at the end of October and into November. The colors were gorgeous! in the higher elevations, the fall colors had come and gone. We took a side trip to the North Rim of Grand Canyon and the aspens were almost totally bare of leaves. Don't go too deep in November into Zion or you might miss the colors. Another nice side trip is to Bryce Canyon, about 1 1/2 hours away. For food, the choices mentioned above by Jay are good, also Pizza & Noodles in Springdale makes fabulous pizzas! Oh yes, don't forget to walk down the River Walk to the Narrows-a very nice 1 mile hike, pretty flat, and that takes you to the entrance of the Narrows, a must for anyone going to Zion! Oh yes, be prepared to walk in 48 degree Fahrenheit water. ;-)
  6. Zion is literally my backyard. I can see it from my backyard at least. I live about 25 miles from the canyon. The double named place probably mentioned for good food above was most likely the Bit and Spur. Another good local place is Oscars. It is the local hangout and has been given 5 stars by zagat. As to the canyon itself in Nov. There is the possiblitity of some of the trails being closed. Less services, but no crowds. It is the time of the year you are allowed to drive the whole canyon not just the main highway. The River walk talked about above starts at the Temple of Sinawava. It is the end of the road in the main canyon. Everything will depend on how much time you have and how physically fit you are, and lastly how scared of heights you might be. The height thing is both walking and driving. As a local, and a person who long ago spent two summers working at the lodge, then taking tours for a tour company through the park, I know places tourists never see, and lately places many locals don't know about.
    Near Hurricane, there is the Red Rock State Park. Much better than Snows Canyon which is on the West side of St. George off the beaten path. Red Rock if you ware willing to do a bit of hiking has a arch that is far better than the delicate arch in Arches National Park. Again most locals don't know about it. Then there are the hanging gardens if you are willing to hike up further from that arch in the Virgin River. Kolob is ok, but the best views are from the lower east part of Kolob. That you get to via the Town of Virgin. There will be signs showing you the way. Go all the way if there is not snow to the Resavoir. If you go the main section of Kolob, you have to drive back to I-15 then up the black ridge (which if you know where to go has the tracks of old pioneer wagons and some of the places left where they would dismantle their wagons to lifte them up cliffs. Kolob is nearer Cedar City Utah. The best shots are actually not in the park but outside ad to the west of it in a place called New Harmony. At the base of Pine Valley mountains on the far west side of the valley if you are there at or near sunset the five fingers of Kolob as they are called glow vibrant red as the sun sets and they will stand out from the surround mountains. Again this is a local knowledge thing. The other good shots are along the trail in the bottom of the Kolob canyon walking to the resavoir from that side. It is not a hike for the faint of heart. Do not over look Pine Valley mountains. Thee are places where there are old abandoned pioneer relics like charchol ovens, and mining enterprises. Great graveyards as well. Some old churches from the mid 1800's as well as a few small towns still occupied.
    Shoot if there was a way to send me a private message, I could tell you much much more. I'm not going to put my email address online. But When you come I could personally take you around or show you how to get to the good spots and what time of day is best for the light show we get.
    As a side note I just did the tunnel walk yesterday. It is the first time since they closed the tunnel at Zion to foot traffic in the 30's that they allowed people to walk through. 300 of us who won a lottery style sign up for the tickets were shuttled to the tunnel, then given about 2 hours to walk through doing almost anything we wanted. One man had cerbal palsey and did it via a walker. The oldest was a lady in her 90's who as a kid walked through before the foot traffic was halted. I was amazed they closed the road to vehicle traffic for 4 hours for this thing. Won't happen again until 2109 when it is the 200 year anniversary of Zion National Park. Great shots out the windows, but the wrong time of day for photographs since the good views were directly into the setting sun.
  7. thanks everyone for the responses...
    agnes THANKS! my email address is dokner@aequale.com
    i'll be there nov 11-15, any help would be appreciated, heights are no issue as i grew up climbing in yosemite
  8. Maybe a little late for the tree color, but if we have a later summer and fall (Indian Summer?) might be pretty good at the lower elevations for cottonwoods and such. Even by late Oct the aspens out that way have lost thier leaves. Late Sept early Oct for aspens in the southwest. Late Oct early Nov for golden cottonwoods in the bottoms. Can also be really cold sometimes, and like mentioned, when in a canyon the sun takes a while to warm things up. I've hit freezing temps in Zion in Mid-Oct once, and a week later it was in the low twenties over at Calf Creek along the Escalante. Stuff was freezing outisde and in cars etc... I was out in the canyons again last fall and it was snowing up high and raining a lot by the time I'd toured the Great Bsin and drifted into Utah. Cold and windy. When I started taking large and medium format gear on winter trips I had a couple occasions where shutters didn't work in really cold conditions, and now carry a couple extras. I'd say it's happened half a dozen times, and most recently in the Sierra where my 65mm SA was lagging in cool weather. Just a thought.
    And being a mountian climber I'd think seriously about bringing cold weather gear so you can be out and about so you get the most out of your five days. I don't know, I camp so it's a little different than when I've stayed in the historic cabins on the Grand Canyon and watched it snow. Utah's not exactly in my back yard, so I don't go unless I have three weeks minimum. I used to bomb to Zion, Kolob Escalante for a week a few years back, but don't like to drive that much anymore.
  9. I guess I missed the part about not walking in the tunnel.

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