Today was my day off. I wanted to keep the mileage low so that I had sort of a rest day during the first chunk of the trip. Utah has an amazing number of national parks, so I figured I’d use today to see at least one. The morning was spent catching up on email, pictures, and the blog.
The camera seems to be giving me issues. At the 12 megapixel setting the images are overly grainy, so I’m hoping the 5 megapixel setting will yield better results as the sensor is not working as hard. For whatever reason my image gallery isn’t loading with the internet on the road, so alas, I can’t upload any of my pictures for everyone to see.
I’m definitely starting to get into the rhythm of the daily tasks that need to get done: cleaning the chain, de bugging the windscreen, packing, keeping the blog updated, and planning the next day’s adventure.
Zion National Park was only 40 miles down the way so I figured it would be a good day trip. Cedar City is at some elevation (say 4500ft or so) and Zion is down the hill. I’ve been pretty blessed with cool to temperate weather so far. Today was going to be the first hot day so far: right at 90 degrees. The ride down to Zion was pretty uneventful, just straight down the freeway. Near the park there was so much commercial build up, it was sort of comical.
Once in Zion, I didn’t really know what to see, so I stayed on the longest road through the park.
It was very unlike Yosemite in that there were not many places to pull of the road and take pics. It was pretty disappointing in that respect. I imagine that if I did some hiking through the park, I’d see more stuff and come away with a much better take on it. The scenery was cool for what I saw.
However, it was apparent that there is a design to a good park and that it’s not all scenery. With it being so warm, I dunked my shirt in water. As air runs over it, you cool as the water evaporates. it’s the AC that comes with motorcycling. 🙂
Once leaving the park, the riding was just awesome.
Both UT-9 and US-89 were well paved with fast sweepers and little traffic. Once taking the turn back towards Cedar City on UT-14 a sign warns of a 10,000 foot pass ahead. That means it’s going to be a bit nippy. The ride to the top of the pass was awesome. I’m in awe of how blessed we are as a country with the natural resources we have here. I’ve crossed fertile farmland, to high desert, snowy mountain tops, and the coastal areas from which I come. It’s truly spectacular.
Coming back into town the road passes through a very narrow canyon with the Cedar River to my right. It reminded me a lot of Kern Canyon that the Death Vally crew passed through.
Much like Friday night we had a group dinner. A few more folks showed up than Friday, say 50 or so in total. They had all sorts of raffles and contests. I thought I had a shot at youngest V-Strommer as it’s an old man’s bike, but someone was 27 who was there. There’s always next year (but my odds go down). The oldest Strommer was well into his 70’s. Rock on.
In the raffle I won an air pump, but I already had one on the bike. I gave it to Gustavo as he did not have one and I could not get it home. We had another night of sharing stories and bike mods. Everyone was headed in all sorts of directions in the morning, so it was an earlier night for most.