Bend, Oregon by way of Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Georgia, Australia, and Washington. The world is an amazing place.
Beau - I can't say for sure when the best time to avoid bugs would be. I did it in August and there was definitely mosquitoes at dollar lake. Enough to where in the afternoon/early evening you were putting on layers to cover up even if you weren't cold.
Awesome stuff, Denis. The SW is remarkable, and I spent only a fraction of the time there you have. Envious of the ongoing adventure
Truly one of my most favorite places on earth. I was lucky enough to spend May - October 2014 living/working/adventuring in the park. I am eager to continue adding content to this area and always happy to discuss its wonders. The ability to visit such rugged peaks in such close proximity to magnificent coastal wilderness is remarkable (let alone the rainforest ecosystems). Personally, it had a very New Zealand feel to me, if that aids in context for anyone.
Attempted a hot springs trip in early December. Trip guide missed the mark a bit on recalling exactly where the hot springs are located. We ended up near some of the summer homes on the south side of the lake (43.7079, -121.2492). The steam from the thermals were visible a little farther around the lake to the east, but because of the time of day and length of hike back, we didn't get to relax in them. Still a really enjoyable Saturday with some terrific color at the lake. The access road is closed at the 10 mile snow park (43.7057, -121.3267), which makes for a 4.5 mile one-way hike to the summer homes. Conditions did not yet require skis or snowshoes, but they will likely be necessary soon.
Attempted a hot springs trip in early December.
The turn-around point for a bottom-up hike of The Narrows is up to the individual/group, but for many hikers a natural destination is Orderville Canyon, a side canyon just over 2.5 miles up the Narrows. Orderville is considerably narrower than The Narrows, and can stand alone as an adventure in itself. It is however a technical trip and requires canyoneering gear. Those wishing to get a small sampling can venture in approximately 0.25 mile to a small waterfall, but are advised not to continue on past that point without appropriate gear.
The fall is a great time to visit Zion National Park and The Narrows as it brings cooler temperatures to the Southwest as well as some additional color to the canyon floor via changing leaves. It also brings cooler temperatures to the Virgin River, though. On this trip, water temperatures were in the mid-50s (F), and while cold, were found to be tolerable by all 3 members of this adventure team for several hours with no additional wet gear.
Waypoints of interest:
Riverside trail termination at Virgin River: 37.29717, -112,98406
Mouth of Orderville Canyon: 37.30783, -112.94682
Orderville Waterfall Turnaround: 37.30692, -112.94537
The turn-around point for a bottom-up hike of The Narrows is up to the individual/group, but for many hikers a natura
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