Monday, March 3, 2014

St. George Trip over President's Day Weekend

Earlier in the year we decided to schedule a quick getaway over President's day weekend to St. George to get a reprieve from the cold weather we anticipated we would be having that time of year.

Surprisingly, the weather here in Salt Lake has been warmer than I expected, for the month of February, and St. George was also in the high 60's to low 70's each day. It was nice enough that we all went swimming in the indoor/outdoor hotel pool one evening.

 Entrance to Zion's National Park was free for President's Day, so we spend a few hours there admiring the amazing scenery. A good friend of mine from college, who lives in St. George and her kids joined us.

The kids had a blast hanging out with friends climbing tree trunks, hiking trails, throwing rocks in the water, playing with sticks... just being kids.

On our way into the park we passed a property that was recently in the news.  A gigantic boulder came lose and dropped into the home, instantly destroying the house and killing the couple that resided in it.

The area is all fenced off, but as you drive by, you can still see boulder resting amid a ton of debris.

As I was researching things to do in St. George I read a lot of good reviews of Snow Canyon State Park. It is a relatively small park. The road that connects both entrances is only six miles long, yet there are so many different things to see. The best part is that the hikes are all short and easy, which is perfect for young children.

Jenny's Canyon was our first stop. It is an easy one-half mile round trip hike to a beautifully sculpted slot canyon. The kids had a blast hiking into the cavities in the rock and playing pick-a-boo.

Our next stop while at Snow Canyon State Park were the sand dunes. We had brought our beach toys, so there was a lot of scooping sand into buckets and dumping it back out. Unlike the beach, there is no water to make the sand stick together, so they moved on to rolling down the hills.
On our way out of the park we  stopped by to admire some pioneer-time graffiti written in axle grease, dating back to 1881.
If you ask the kids what their most favorite thing was about the trip they will tell you it was the St. George Children's Museum. Carson got to be a bank teller and a fireman, a pilot and an auto mechanic.

Stella and Emilia got to sit in the Oval Office and drive a pretend USPS mail truck. The science area had a ring soaking in bubble solution tied to a rope. The kids would step into the ring and pull on the rope creating a bubble chamber that would burst as soon as someone touched it.

On a separate note, Snow Canyon State Park also has lava tunnels that were formed by flowing lava which moves beneath the hardened surface of a lava flow, forming a cave. We did not have flashlights with us to enter one, so we were only able to view the entrance. On the way back Carson commented on the Lava Flow Trail hikers sign we passed. "Look mommy, no tricycles allowed on this trail."  Which, I guess, it's an accurate statement :)

One of the exhibits had a virtual simulator that allows the players who are standing in front of a green screen to simulate playing a game of volleyball, soccer, or hockey. It sure makes for some fun people watching!

On our last day we visited the St. George LDS Temple and visitor center and took a tour of Brigham Young's Winter Home. It was great to end our trip on such an uplifting note.