Day 18 - Cedar Breaks NM, Coral Pink Sand Dunes SP and Zion NP
Today we have a nice tour and we have to be careful for road works on the UT9. We start around 7.30am with breakfast at “Oscar’s Cafe” and get some takeaway lunch from there.
We drive to the west and take the UT15 through Cedar City to Parowan where we leave the highway towards “Cedar Breaks National Monument”. At 10.30am we stop at the “Brian Head Station” for a short stop. A bit further we see a marmot. We continue and arrive at “Cedar Breaks” also known as “ Little Bryce”. Here, the highest point of Utah being 3200m, you can find the “Brian Head Ski Resort” and there is even snow. We are told that the past few days they still got some fresh snow here.
As from “Chessmen Ridge Overlook”, “Sunset View” and “Point Supreme” at the Visitor Center you have an amazing view of “Little Bryce”. At “Point Supreme” we listen to a ranger giving some explanation about mountain lions that live in this area but fortunately people do not see them often.
We drive on and around 12.25pm we drive on the UT14 “The Scenic Route”. We decide to drive first to Cedar Breaks, have a picnic there and then return to do the entire scenic route. After the picnic we drive back and exit at the “Navajo Lake” where we have a short stop. We drive on and follow the sign to the “Cascade Falls”. On our way Nathalie sees an osprey landing in a tree and we stop to take some nice pictures of him. We arrive at a nice overlook where we have a chat with some people. When PaNa start the hike to the “Cascade Falls” they see that the road is closed due to construction works (one of many during this trip...).
Once driving back to the UT14 we pass a lot of lava. Nice! On the highway 89 Patrick stops to take pictures of some local cows.
As it is very sunny we head back to the “Coral Pink Sand Dunes” but this time we go to that one parking place where the view on the dunes is prettier than at the entrance of the State Park. Indeed, the sand is now dry and has nice waves...
We continue our drive and stop at the “Thunderbird Restaurant” where we have homemade pie and nice coffee. This time Lucien has his camera with him to take pictures of the hummingbirds as we sit at the same table as a couple of days ago.
At 5.30pm we head back to the hotel as the road works on the UT9 are already finished for today. Around 6.30pm we are back in the hotel where we prepare ourselves for dinner. This time we go back to the “Switchback Grill”. Afterwards we walk a bit in the village where we are amazed of all the bats flying around. At 9.30pm we switch off all the lights as tomorrow is another long day to… Las Vegas, Nevada!
Daytrip approx. 379 km