Monday, May 21, 2012

the girls take zion

Girls trip. 
What do you think of?
the spa.
a massage (or two)
a soak in a mineral bath.
fine chocolates.
cute shoes. 


How about:
100s of feet of rope. 
helmet hair.
camping with 10,000 moths.
dangling off a cliff.
the biggest bestest most fantastic burger you've ever eaten in your life.
wading through a waste deep stagnant pool.
a 12 mile run through the high desert. 

that's how WE did it. 
we crammed as much adventure into two quick days as we could, and we had the time of our lives.

How to Play in Zion with the Girls
just do it.
this was a very spur of the moment trip. it was all planned out in just a few days. all four of us had stuff to do and busy busy schedules, but we decided to stop talking about and just make it happen.
sometimes you just have to jump.
pick a spot
If you really want a great girls adventure, I reccomend any national park. There are lots of different activities to do (all well mapped) and always small towns near by with places to stay (either hotels or campsites) and good food to eat. We chose Zion National Park--it was in the middle(ish) from where we all were coming, and the scenery is hard to beat.
mix it up
we could have spent our days hiking around the park, and had an amazing time.....but we wanted a little more.....something we'd never done before. We decided we wanted to go Canyoneering- the park is known for it's slot canyons, and we wanted to explore them the best we could. 
find a guide
We knew we would have the best experience with a guide. 
We booked a day with Zion Mountain School, and I cannot recommend them enough. We were lucky enough to go out with the owner, Caleb, and we had an awesome experience. 
The school provides ALL of the gear--everything you'll need for the day (except food and water) and they even take you to the location. We hiked in--up up up the mountain through canyons, over boulders, under fallen trees, and then made our way dooooowwwwn by rappelling. 
We traveled through slot canyons (some with water) and went down the cliffs over and over again.
It is a feeling that compares to no other as you walk your way down the edge of a massive rock wall.
Screams and giggles were not uncommon as our day went on.
for our day we packed a variety of trail mix, jerky, granola bars and dried fruit. All high energy snacks that were easy to pack and kept us going.
After our full day of canyoneering, we were ravenous. If you are anywhere near Zion, eat at Oscars
We did
I love a good burger after a long day out, and I'm pretty sure this was the best burger I'd ever had.
Fresh ingredients, lots of options (I had grilled pineapple on my burger!), and a great surprise when alot of tourist towns can get away with serving up dull food.
The second day of our trip we wanted to explore the park and we decided the best way to do it would be by running it. We could cover more miles that way, and really, running through mountains  and cliffs and forests and slot canyons and red rock just had to be done. 
We mapped out our trail and headed out. We carried lots of water, a few gels, and our map, and we were good to go for a few hours. We started our day early so we could beat most of the desert heat.
Since it was a trail I'd never been on, I also packed a few band-aids, and some iodine tablets for water purification. We had more than enough water, but when I'm heading out into the unknown I like to be extra prepared, just in case.

some phone shots
(I am constantly asked how to follow me on instagram....sorry, I'm private. boring, I know)
After much debate, I DID take my big camera along for our canyoneering adventure. I am so happy I did. While it did spent a lot of time being heavy in  my pack, I was able to get a few shots of the day. I was so happy to spend the time with these awesome, strong, funny and inspiring ladies. A good way to really get to know eachother is to spend a night giggling in a tent, and then hanging off the side of a mountain together.

left to right:
tanae, me, kelly, leilani.
amazing girls those three.
zion girls
zion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girlszion girls
the end.


littlepenelopelane said...

you girls are so rad! What a great trip!!

Laura said...

Oh where do you find friends like this??? I would so much rather run and rappel through a national park than eat chocolate and go to the spa. Well, keep the chocolate -- I'll eat it while rappelling. :) Love your pics, they are FABULOUS.

Unknown said...

That looks like SO much fun! I agree with the above comment: where do you find friends like this? I love mine, but none of them would ever consider this!

Courtney said...

Beautiful pictures Sheena! Girls trips really are the best, especially when spent doing something you love.

whitneyingram said...

My husband's cousins and aunts go to their cousin's retreat every May. They go to Vegas, eat at crap buffets, go shopping and sit by the pool. I am always invited, but I have yet to go. It sounds like a little bit of hell on earth. I would feel so lazy.

I am so glad for you. You deserve a trip like this after all this Robby-schooling-all-the-damn-time.

Becky said...

That looks like so much fun! I haven't repelled in ages! I wonder where the closest place to go is around here (other than indoors...).

Angi said...

I can't even begin to say how much I want to do this!

Anonymous said...

This is my kind of trip! There is something empowering about having adventures with the girls. My husband is my main climbing partner, but I really love climbing with women too.
Sheena, which trail(s) did you run? Would you recommend it? We're going in a couple weeks & would love to run some moderate to longer trails while there.

Melissa said...

I'm totally doing this at some point this Summer.

julie said...

totally my kind of girls outing! you were at a beautiful place! I can not wait to get out tis weekend to hike in the Alps!

Cal said...

This is just perfect looking. It's making me really psyched for my Yosemite trip in June! =)

summer said...

i love how you guys look like 14 years old! the whole thing sounds incredible! you really are so rad :)

melissa said...

you're killing me.

Kimberley said...

Utah is so crazy gorgeous. You're making me jealous - all those red rocks and slot canyons. I need to get out there this summer and get in it! That landscape is just unparalleled.