Tuesday, May 7, 2013

zebra slot

Last week when we found ourselves in the desert, we knew we wanted to explore someplace new. 
We sat around the campfire Friday night--and after ghost stories were told and marshmallows had been roasted, we planned our adventure for the next day.....

Zebra Slot Canyon in the Escalante area of Southern Utah it would be. 
We packed up lots of drinks, snacks, and swimsuits just in case we found water (although we didn't), and headed over the rocky hills to the trail head. 

my desert family.
One of my favorite things about the desert is that there are so many hidden treasures to be found. Looking out from the start of our hike (below) you would never guess that the nearly barren landscape is hiding slot canyons, caves, and new worlds to explore. 
The smooth red trail and desert grass soon turned to mounds of smooth red rock--shaped and weathered by years of wind, and begging to be climbed on.
The kids dubbed this one "The Portal"
The rock twisted and turned into waves. 
Waves built up into mountains. 
Mountains melted down into rivers made of the softest sand. 
And it went on and on and on like this--the desert sun soaking into our skin as we wandered.
A few miles in, we found our destination.
Our Group. 
I love these people. 
We had 15 of us in this little canyon--dads lifting kids up up up and over rocks and walls all the way to the end. I would have loved to have gotten an overhead shot of nine kids crammed between the narrow walls....it was quite the sight!
I wish you could have seen it here--felt how it felt.
These pictures do it no justice at all--there is no feeling. The depth is wrong. You can't feel the coolness of the rock, or the softness of the sand. You can't see how the shadows fall as the canyon bends and bows. You can't hear the echoed giggles of the kids up ahead, and wonder about the voices that filled the walls years and years ago. 
There is no sand on your skin, no red stained feet. 
I am so grateful for photographs--all my memories constantly captured. 
But no photo can take the place of living and breathing the air inside of these walls......
Our little troop. 
We did around 6 miles and these guys more than earned their extra s'mores that night.
What have you explored lately?


Hayley said...

amazing. adding this to the utah adventure list that keeps growing!!

Jackie said...

Escalante/Boulder area is one of our favorite places to explore! Especially the slot canyons, such an awesome time, and kids love it too. :) If you ever get the chance, and maybe you have done these slots but there is one called "PeekaBoo" and "Spooky" that are off the beaten path just like this. There is also "Death Hollow" which really lived up to there name with the dead cows we ran into in the slot..ick. Maybe not kid-friendly. Ha! Glad to see a fam that loves the red rock as much as us. :)

kassidi bridge said...

Awesome! Beautiful pics!

Chelsea Hunter said...

I'm from Vancouver BC and want to do a road trip to the desert some day. My husband and I, along with our Australian Shepard love hiking, trail running and exploring. I was wondering if you have any suggests of first places to go if we were to plan a trip down there.


Sarah said...

That looks like such a magical place! I would love to visit the desert some day.

Em-n-em said...

Wow - I'm jealous of your weekend - I would love some desert time, there's a distinct lack of it in the UK. Thanks for sharing the perfect family weekend.
lates post - 10 lakes swim in 2 days

Scarlett said...

I'm not always such a fan of the heat, but your adore for the desert, and the beautiful pictures you capture make me want to give it a shot.

Ali said...

I just love your beautiful words describing our adventure. I am more than Lucky to be your friend!

Melissa said...

Amazing photos!! And awesome destination!

Laura said...

I'm taking notes -- we totally want to come do a Utah tour soon.....well, when the kids aren't wetting their sleeping bags anymore. :) Thank you for your trip reports, I LOVE them!!!