Zion National Park, UT
Weeping Rock Trail, Kayenta Trail, The Narrows via Riverside Walk
I fell hard for Zion.
Entering the park, you're immediately greeted by the towering red sandstone formations characteristic of the high desert, but it's interwoven with lush vegetation and it feels instantly like sacred space. We first visited Weeping Rock, a natural spring trickling from a massive rock alcove which feeds a delicate hanging garden. From there we took the moderate climb up the Kayenta Trail, a route dotted with crimson prickly pears and impressive views down the canyon.
The next day we hiked The Narrows, a trail I'd love to someday repeat. The Riverside Walk ends at its intersection with the North Fork of the Virgin River, at which point hikers continue into the narrowest part of Zion Canyon by walking upstream in the river. After several days of rain, the river ran a murky brown, but that couldn't diminish the beauty of the walk. It's somewhat slow-going, picking your way through the slippery river bed, but the play of light and shadow on the canyon walls was amazing.