After taking the sunrise photographs, watching the turkey and deer, and stopping to take roadside shots of the mountains, it was still quite early in the morning. We headed to the trails at Emerald Pools. This proved to be the most spectacular view we’d gotten thus far, and the most enjoyed hike since Red Rock Canyon in Nevada.
The path started on a paved trail with short drop offs. The farther on the trail we continued, it became more rough and rugged with loose sand and rock and sometimes slippery areas with much longer drop offs.
The formations along the rock walls of the mountain we were climbing were just incredible. There were natural ledges, shelves, grooves, knots, holes, and spikes either protruding from or eroded into the walls and floor.
This section looked like it had huge teeth sticking out, and the holes were large enough to stick your hands inside.
These are the same mountains we’d photographes at sunrise, but from a much closer view.
The waterfalls, hanging gardens, and the view itself toatlly blew Weeping Rock away. There was no comparison. Of course, this was a bit more of a hike than Weeping Walk, but well worth it. There were three levels of Emerald Pools, and the trails became a bit more difficult as you advanced to the next level of pools.
There was a much more defined water fall than that of the “seeping” of Weeping Rock.
Naturally, the water from the falls has to go somewhere…the Emerald Pools.
The waterfalls are truly spectacular, especially agaisnst the colorful canvas of Autumn foliage.
You can see how tiny I appear in the right hand side of the photgraph as Dirt Man took this from the other side of the bend.
At this point, we were still on the designated trail. I am walking up the natural rock steps between two boulders.
Of course, it wouldnot be a true excursion if Dirt Man did not venture off the deignated course…but what a delight that he did (after I fussed at him, of course!)…he found two caves. Here he is standing in the larger of the two. It was home to a few tarantula…I did not take pictures of them because I was not delighted in finding them there…but I guess it beat having bats fly into my head. No, that didn’t happen, but that’s what always happens in movies.
This is the smaller one, and a bit darker and spookier than the larger one.
Dirt Man looks kind of small walking around that boulder.
This is another shot of the mountains from our viewpoint.
This is taken from a higher elevation.
I colors of the foliage compliment the strata of the mountains.
I was awestruck every time I looked head on at that mountain.
I loved this view with all of the gold and green below. One thing I noticed about this area was the shade of green. Most of the green was more of a lichen/mossy green as apposed to the lush green of the East Cost. It made a soothing, subtle palette
This was the largest Emerald Pool. It was magnificent with boulders long the right side. I din’t post many pics of the pools because the other scenery was even more beautiful…and I could only include so many photographs.
This was a spectacular view. The travel of sound was particularly amazing, and a bit unsettling at times. Several times, we heard the crashing of rocks sliding, tumbling, and echoing through the mountains. I was in awe of the size and power of all that surrounded me. Each time I heard the rumbles, I wanted to be out of the mountains. However, I knew that I really wasn’t any safer at the bottom than the top, and no matter where I went in Zion, I was surrounded by mountains of rock. I had to squash those thoughts whenever they started, and look around me and bask in the beauty of that moment in time.
We climbed up and around this. Sounds kind of crazy when I look at it from this view. It really look different when you’re right up on it.
Another shot of the same view.
Here’s a shot of one of the smaller pools.
This is a black and white of the pool area off the trail near the caves.
I had to include a shot of my nemesis, medal chains…when I know it is a maintained trail and contains chains, I automatically freak thinking that it must be too difficult to attempt, but somehow, I still manage to do the unmaintained trails that are steeper and do not contain chains…chains should be my friend. What is wrong with me?