Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About?


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Joe Geib
(joegeib) - F

Locale: Delaware & Lehigh Valleys
Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About? on 05/13/2009 21:29:25 MDT Print View

In September/October, my wife and I are going to Zion/Bryce/Cedar Breaks area. Being from the lush northeast, is there anything we should be worried about?

We spent a year in CO, so we're used to the dry climate, higher elevation, etc.

Should I be worried about rattlesnakes, foreign tourists, or anything else?

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About on 05/13/2009 21:43:20 MDT Print View

I'd try to work my way up to Canyonlands and Arches too. Otherwise, I'd only worry about JoePa going down from the pressbox.

b s
(smyth) - F
Bryce/Zion Sept on 05/13/2009 21:54:53 MDT Print View

I swung through Bryce and Zion mid to late September last year. Both parks were still packed with tour buses. Probably less than during peak summer season but it was still fairly crowded in the frontcountry.

Pack for all seasons. In the same week I remember daytime temps in Zion in the 90s and nighttime temps in Bryce in the low 30s.

Oh, and bring a few extra $. I think it was $25 entrance fee at each park out there which caught me by surprise. But well worth it, beautiful places. Enjoy the trip.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry on 05/13/2009 22:20:54 MDT Print View

Buy a parks pass before you go.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Don't Worry, be Happy on 05/13/2009 23:27:53 MDT Print View

Don't need to worry about snakes or animals.

Do need to avoid tourists... so hike off the beaten path.

Have fun.

Daniel Cox
(stilldtc) - F

Locale: The desert
A tip on 05/14/2009 20:34:59 MDT Print View

Been living in the desert SW for 9 years, and backpacking here for 5 of those, and I would have to say that there is no better place to cowboy camp it. Neither rattlesnakes nor any other nasties really want a thing to do with the giant monkeys that occasionally come stomping through their homes. Remember that most rattlesnake bites occur on the hands and faces of 16-24 year old males (gee I wonder why?). Other than that, many scorpions stings are no worse than that of a bee. Shake out your shoes before you get going everyday (they make a good microhabitat for a great many things), use a bivy if you want, and you will have one good trip.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About? on 05/14/2009 21:14:06 MDT Print View

Joe,
I think you are out the thunderstorm season, but if doing backcountry stuff be sure to ask about storms tracks anywhere in the area. My wife and I almost got shut out of a Virgin River hike (Zion) in the first week of October.

Also consider bringing low gaiters to keep the weed seeds out of your socks, especially if hiking off trail. They are small and sharp, and cleaning socks at the end of a day is a drag.

Have fun. It's wonderful country.

Edited by greg23 on 05/15/2009 07:06:18 MDT.

M G
(drown) - F - MLife

Locale: Shenandoah
Re: Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About? on 05/15/2009 06:47:48 MDT Print View

Just spent 10 days in that area with my GF in April. A first for us. We checked out the northern section of Zion NP because there was still too much snow up high. Much quieter than the zoo down in Springdale. Spent 5 days around Escalante. That area is phenomenal and I will be going back. Bring some Abbey to read while you are there.

Spent a day exploring Kodakrome State Park. Wishing we had more time to go out to Grovesnor arch and other remote places in Grand Staircase but we ran out of time.

We finished up in Grand Gulch /Cedar Mesa. Again spectacular. Natural Brides Nat. Monument made was good place to car camp one night, with very cool hiking down in White Canyon and the place is known for its stargazing.

We put 1600 miles on the rental out of Vegas but saw spectacular country. Definitely get the NP pass. It pays for itself if you will see more than 2 parks this year, if you will only do Zion and Bryce that's 50$ and you can get away without it.

Joe Geib
(joegeib) - F

Locale: Delaware & Lehigh Valleys
Re: Re: Going to SW, Anything I Should Worry About? on 05/15/2009 07:05:37 MDT Print View

I seem to notice that the Parks Pass is now $80, not the $50 its been...

M G
(drown) - F - MLife

Locale: Shenandoah
Park pass. on 05/15/2009 08:07:31 MDT Print View

I bought one in Feb and it was 80$.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Park pass. on 05/15/2009 17:20:40 MDT Print View

If you are 60 or older, pick up a Golden Eagle Pass. $25, good for life, good for entrance to any NP, and also many state parks at a 50% discount.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Park pass. on 05/15/2009 19:11:31 MDT Print View

"The Senior Pass replaced the Golden Age Passport in January 2007. The pass is for citizens or permanent residents of the United States, who are 62 years of age or older."

"The cost of the Senior Pass is $10, and it is valid for the lifetime of the pass holder."

Gee, only 20 more years....

Edited by greg23 on 05/15/2009 19:12:30 MDT.