Family Travel, Part 3: Belly of the Dragon, Cat Stair Canyon, Zion National Park, Vegas

If you missed the previous two posts, you can find them here:

This is the last post in the series, so let’s move on to day 6.

Day 6: Belly of the Dragon, Cat Stair Canyon

Day 6 was Easter, so I knew we wanted to do some of the smaller local hikes, rather than one of the bigger national parks. We purposely went to the grocery store the day before so that we had food on hand for breakfast, lunch and dinner in case the entire town closed down for the holiday.

Belly of the Dragon: The first local hike we did was Belly of the Dragon, which is only about 20 minutes from Kanab. You start the hike out by climbing into the cave, and then come out the other side to hike through a sandy wash until you finally get to a little waterfall and have to turn back around. It’s a pretty great hike for kids and the ‘dragon belly’ is super neat too. While we enjoyed the hike, it was crazy crowded with people and kids.

Cat Stair Canyon: On the whole other side of the spectrum was our hike to Cat Stair Canyon, which was completely deserted. We didn’t see another human until we were leaving, it was so quiet and beautiful and then you round the corner and there was a huge section of stacked, crushed cars!

Apparently back in the 1960’s they used cars to fill a gap in the highway and it is super cool to see. One thing to keep in mind, is only do this hike if it is dry, dry, dry. When we were there, the entire area was sandy but apparently just a few weeks earlier there was a river running through it.

Oh and my favorite “review” on the link above says “Meh, big rocks, water. And rusty old cars.” Travis and I could not stop laughing about it and throughout the rest of our trip whenever we saw something absolutely beautiful we’d say, “Meh. Big Mountains. Lots of Rocks.” or “Meh. Mountain Views. Not Enough Fast Food.”

Day 7: Zion National Park

Next stop was Zion National Park — we used our America the Beautiful annual pass here too. We had so much fun riding e-bikes in Austin (you can read about it here), that we decided it would be a great way to enjoy the sights of Zion. However, when we arrived by driving through the mountains, Travis said that even if he didn’t get out of the car the trip would have been worth it. THAT is how mind-blowing the sights are here!

We did a full-day e-bike rental through Zion Guru with one rad runner for me ($79) and one rad wagon for Travis and Jack ($99). They provide helmets and each bike has a basket for carrying your stuff. The basket was big enough on my bike to carry our backpack with waters and packed lunch.

We spent the day zooming around on our e-bikes and stopped at the Zion Lodge to lock them up and eat our packed lunch. From there, we walked over to the Emerald Pools Trailhead for a hike to a waterfall and back. Once again, the hike was rather crowded so if you like a little less people when you’re exploring, you might want to stick to just e-biking around. By the end of the day, Travis’ allergies were killing him and we were all exhausted from biking and hiking so we headed home.

Day 8: Kanab to Vegas

We had to be out of our condo by 10am, so we woke up and packed up the house. From there, we grabbed some breakfast to go from Sunny Creek and hit the road for Vegas. Since our rental was through Turo, we filled it with gas and went through a car wash on our way into town.

It was only supposed to be in the mid-70’s, but we were surprised with a 93-degree day. So, we pretty much just grabbed some food and enjoyed the air conditioning of the miracle mile shops.

This time for our hotel we upgraded a bit and stayed at the Signature at MGM Grand ($213 for a night). This room was SO MUCH nicer and we even had a gigantic whirlpool jacuzzi. And yes, Jack had the very best time splashing around in there. We aren’t really big Vegas people, so honestly a cold hotel room was a pretty great end to an absolutely ridiculously beautiful vacation.

Day 9: Home

We woke up at the terrible hour of 3am to take an Uber back to the airport and head home.

Worth it though. 100% worth it.

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