Math and Time Zone Changes – a Dangerous Mix
[Zion National Park, UT]
Thursday was our last day in Zion. We had a flight to catch from Las Vegas that afternoon, so we figured we’d laze around in the morning and actually sleep in for once while on vacation!
When we finally woke up, I went outside to see what the weather was like, only to find the hotel’s black-and-white kitty sleeping on our patio table. He made me miss my own black-and-white kitty, Jeffrey, at home! We quickly dubbed the hotel cat ‘Jeffrey’s Mormon cousin’. I made myself some coffee and enjoyed a marvelous morning on the patio, kitty still on the table and hummingbirds flying around. Ahhhh, those hikes were great, but it was nice to be able to relax, too!
We knew we’d gain an hour when driving back to Vegas (Utah is on Mountain Standard Time, an hour ahead of the West Coast), so we thought we had an extra hour of time. We decided to check out Kolob Terrace Road, which was on our way. Just west of the main park entrance, Kolob Terrace Road ascends 3000 ft until you’re eye-level with the red Navajo sandstones that you see at Zion Canyon. We got splendid views of Firepit Knolls – cinder cones leftover from the volcanoes that once used to dominate this region. We passed a few trailheads, including the Wildcat Canyon trailhead. This trailhead is the access point for those who want to rappel down into one of the most photographed back-country sights in the park – The Subway, a tube-like slot canyon. We could have kept going to Lava Point, an older fire lookout point, and the Kolob Reservoir, but we decided to turn back so that we have enough time to get to the airport.
On our way to Las Vegas, we passed another attraction that we definitely want to explore on our next trip here – the Dinosaur Discovery site in St. George. In spring of 2000, a local farmer was leveling some land when he turned over a sandstone slab and recognized the distinctive three-toed dinosaur tracks. He kept turning over slap after slab, and each had tracks on it. The farmer donated the land to the city, and today the 15-000 sq ft discovery site protects his find. Too bad we didn’t have time for another detour!
Not only did we not have time for the dinosaur tracks, but we also almost missed our flight! That extra hour we thought we had? Well, I am still no sure what happened to it. It must have vanished somewhere in-between bad math and changing time zones, so we ended up arriving in Las Vegas only an hour before our flight instead of 2. We had to rush to return the rental car and get on the shuttle, but we made it in the end. Apparently, it takes more than 2 MBAs to do such complex calculations.
Coming back to the hustle and bustle of LA from the tranquility of Zion was jarring, to say the least. Luckily, there was only one workday separating us from the weekend.