We made it into St. George, just in time for triple digit temps in all of southern Utah and northern Arizona. Here goes plan change #4,573. We made no attempt to hit Canyonlands or Arches NP’s, nor to pop over to Lake Powell/Page AZ, due to the triple digits. We found the St. George RV Park in town and made it home for a few days.
There is a high school for the performing arts called Tuacahn, that has an outdoor performance area near St. George. We checked it out and found it to be a large outdoor amphitheater area among the red rock cliffs that stages musical performances near constantly during the good weather, such as “Peter Pan” and “Tarzan”, among others. Unfortunately we could not breach the walls or gate due to a live dress rehearsal going on at the time we were there.
In keeping with that secretive theme, we visited a small art center called Kayenta. They did not allow photos of any of the art contained in the many shops, but we did manage to snap a couple of pix of a 3-D chalk drawing on the walkway.
Just outside St. George, the Red Cliffs National Conservation Area is home to some scenic red hills and the most intact building from the late 1800’s version of Old Harrisburg, the Adams house. There is a small campground (no hookups, no facilities, and very limited as to the size of camping rigs) that rolls through the hills at this site, but it is more suitable for tent camping and there is not a lot of activities to partake in other than horse or hike trails.
While we were here we discovered through social media that Bud and Meredith, some of our friends from the “Tiffin Service Center RV Resort” in Red Bay, Alabama were recreating at the Zion River RV Resort just outside Zion NP. We met up with them and swapped stories and experiences over dinner. Later, we would make plans to hook up again at the Provo KOA for a couple of days.
Our next stop was at the Utah Lake State Park in Provo. Temps had drastically dropped (hah! into the 90’s) and our site had a view of the lake with snow capped mountains all around. Unfortunately, the midge flies were in full force and made it not fun to be outside in the area of the lake during the daylight hours.
We took the opportunity to escape the clouds of flies and drove up Hwy. 189 to check out Bridal Veil Falls, just outside the Provo area and along the Provo/Jordan River. The Falls have a very nice paved bike/walk path that runs parallel to the very large mountain and the river for several miles. After a short walk with Woody up the path, we continued north toward Park City. We passed a very nice lake, the Deer Creek Reservoir, which was a state park and very busy in this heat with all the boaters. And as luck would have it, we ran over something in the road and it punctured the rear tire. It’s always nice having to change a flat in 90 degree heat at 7,000 feet or better. Thankfully, Heber City had a Les Schwab open for business and after a quick stop there we were mobile again with a fixed flat.
We arrived in Park City and headed for Old Main St. to act like typical tourists and eat lunch. The street is lined with ski resort type shops, restaurants, and bars. We ate at Flanagan’s Irish Pub and walked among the shops until the heat persuaded us to head back home in the A/C of the Jeep.
When we returned to Provo, we relocated to the Springville KOA where we met up with Bud and Meredith again. While they went sightseeing into Salt Lake City, we took a scenic drive on the Mt. Nebo Scenic Loop just south of us between Payson and Nephi. The first stop on our loop tour was the Grotto Trail. It is a 0.3 mile trail into the hills, criss-crossing a creek several times until we found the Grotto. The Grotto is a popular place for locals and tourists to go and play in the water.
Our next stop on the loop was at a geologic formation called the “Devil’s Kitchen”. It was a very short walk along a paved path to an observation overhang. The “Devil’s Kitchen” is nick-named “little Bryce Canyon” and looking at these pictures, the nick-name is well deserved.
The scenic loop lived up to the scenic part, climbing to a summit of 9,345 feet. There were many beautiful views overlooking the mountains, and at the summit we happened upon some snow, the outside temperature being 65 degrees and a very welcome respite from the valley floor temps.
The next day we played tour guide for Bud and Meredith and returned back to Bridal Veil Falls, Heber City, and Park City. After more story swapping and a nice meal, we all prepared for our impending moving days. Bud and Meredith headed for Idaho, and us headed for who knows where, just trying to stay out of the extreme heat. We had another good time visiting with more of our “Tiffin Service Center RV Resort” friends.