I thought I’d follow up yesterday’s post with few tips that might be helpful if your planning a spring break trip to Zions. Great temps and awesome scenery make it the perfect way to spend Spring Break!
We left soon than we planned in order to get out ahead of a giant storm forecasted for the next day. Even though it was a two-hour scramble to get out the door, leaving in a hurry ended up to be a genius move.
Because I was not prepared to leave that soon I ended up throwing together all my food and winter clothing in just a few minutes. I wasn’t sure I what to bring, so I packed everything. We have a van with plenty of space so we threw it all in and left.
When arrived in Springdale, Utah we found a very small resort town nestled right into Zion’s Canyon. We thought it would be a lot like Moab. But…it was not. It’s much smaller and much more seasonal than we expected. Since it was low season, 85 percent of the shops and restaurants were closed for the season. It was then that I realized over-packing was going to pay off.
Here’s a few tips and tricks we learned on this trip that might be helpful if you’re planning an off season trip to Zions National Park.
- Bring plenty of food. Visiting in the “off season” means you’ll get fantastic rates at the hotels, but it also means most the seasonal town is closed down from December to March. Unless you like buying $15 sandwiches for your kids, load up on groceries before you leave town. We hit Costco and brought lots of sandwich makings, chips, fresh and canned fruit along with microwaveable foods like Taquitos and teriyaki chicken bowls. They were the perfect meal at the end of the day.
- Bring a DVD player or other electronic devices. It gets dark early and we ended up spending more time than we wanted in the hotel room at night. We were glad we had some entertainment for the kids. They built a hut out of the hotel bedding and watched Wizard of Oz quite happily inside it. It worked out great since the Shawshank Redemtion was on cable and I’d never seen it.
- Bring your winter necessities. It was about 45 degrees most days which is unseasonably cold. Zions is usually one of the warmest places in Utah. But the weather can be variable depending on the day and the elevation you spend time at. Up high in the park it was cold and snowy. In the bottom of the canyon light jackets were enough. We were glad we came prepared with snow boots, hiking shoes, hats, mittens and coats. We used it all. We changed our shoes and outerwear quite frequently.
- Bring your boots and a box. We wore every pair of shoes we brought. We each had a pair of hiking boots which were great for hiking the trails and on the slickrock. We each had snow boots which we wore in the higher elevations where the trails were snowy. We also brought a pair of easy slip-on shoes which were so handy when removing dirty trail shoes. I also recommend having a large shallow box or bin to throw dirty, wet and or muddy shoes in when you get back into the car.
Don’t let your fear of getting your feet dirty scare you away from what might be your favorite family destination during a really un-crowded time of year. May your next off season trip be filled with lots of fun, adventure, memories and many delicious things to eat (that you brought from home).