The drive down to Southern Utah, our final destination for the day, was an exciting one! We had one last stop at Kolob Canyons before calling it a night and dealt with challenging ground to sky lighting and downpours. I was white knuckled the entire drive as my tires were near the end of their life and well if you didn’t read what I did to my brakes – take a moment to catch up. Needless to say I was in fear of hydroplaning… but luckily we arrived safe. I knew all those countless hours of watching NASCAR would pay off making me a better driver. We arrived at Kolob Canyons as the storm clouds parted for a few moments while we did a driving tour of the park.
Kolob Canyons is part of the national park system, located just north of the more well-known Zion National Park. We arrived after the visitor center had closed and I proceeded in to the park as I did not see a fee envelope anywhere. I did not feel too guilty as I had planned on buying the America the Beautiful annual park pass here, but since they were closed I decided I would purchase one from Zion the next day. I guess what I’m just trying to point out is that I’m not some dirt bag who didn’t pay my fee 😉
We proceeded up the red paved road, climbing up into the mountains, where I reminded myself to not abuse my breaks on the way out of the park as I didn’t want another “are my breaks on fire” situation. You should really only have one of those per trip… if you must have any.
As usual I stopped every few feet to take a photo because the beauty was unbelievable and I’m obsessed with taking photos of pretty much everything. It was a long drive from Park City Utah to Kolob Canyons (about 4 hours) and Boomer had not been out of the truck in a while. Since it was later in the day and not many cars around I did break a rule of the national parks system (shh don’t tell). I let Boomer out of the truck and threw a tennis ball for him in the parking lot. Pets are allowed on leash in the parking lots – so I only ½ broke the rule… but in true scaredy cat fashion every time I heard a car I rounded up Boomer and put him back on leash. I’m sure he couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me.
There are a few hikes in Kolob Canyons but since Boomer was not allowed on any of the trails I kept to the 5 mile scenic drive, which was fine as I would be hiking all day in Zion the next day…. and for a novice hiker like me it’s best to not over do it!
Want to check out Kolob Canyons? The visitor center is located at 3752 E Kolob Canyon Rd, New Harmony Utah. Take exit 40 off of I-15. The visitors center is open Spring and Summer 8am -5pm and Fall and Winter 8am – 4:30pm. The park fee is $25 USD per car which grants you access to Kolob and Zion. You can also purchase the America the Beautiful pass for $80 USD which gives you from the month of purchase a full year of visiting any national parks for the one fee. This is a logical solution for anyone who plans on visiting multiple parks. Based on the traditional $25 fee per park, visit 4 parks and the pass has paid for itself and a little extra.
We finished up our driving tour of Kolob Canyons and headed to our final stop for the night, Washington Utah. Confusing right? The hotels were more reasonable a little further away from Zion so I chose to stay in Washington.
There was also a special treat located in Washington an In N Out restaurant. I of course had to stop there and pick up a burger and some hand cut fries… It would be considered crazy if I didn’t.
There was also a Petco located near where we were staying and Boomer would think I was crazy if I did not take him in there. So in an attempt to keep anyone from thinking I was crazy, Boomer and I wondered the aisles of Petco. And since the rain was pelting down outside we really did not have much of a choice to do anything else… at least that’s what Boomer told me.
We picked up a new toy, a Chewbacca squeaker toy, for Boomer. As we approached the cash register, the cashier grabbed something from behind the counter and slipped it into our soon to be bag. Apparently there was a gift with purchase when buying any pet Star Wars toys and what a gift it was, Yoda ears! I laughed and laughed. I think Boomer was so worn out from the drive that he didn’t even bother taking his Yoda ears off… poor thing!