Thursday (4/6) was our last day in Mesquite and the sun was shining and the winds had died down a bit so we decided to make another run to St. George to mainly hike a couple trails Diane researched and found online.
This time we wanted to get a little earlier start so I didn’t go to the airfield and Diane rushed her morning routine a little and we were off like a herd of turtles at 9AM, which was really 10AM in Utah LOL!!! Not such an early start.
Once we reached St. George we headed directly to the Snow Canyon State Park. Snow Canyon State Park was designated as a Utah State Park in 1958 and was established to protect the federally listed desert tortoise and its habitat.
The park is open all year round and has an entry fee of $6 per car but if we were locals we would certainly by an annual pass for $24. There is a campground in the park but the length limit is 35ft so it certainly won’t work for us.
The park is made up of volcanic cones, sand dunes, deep red sandstone cliffs, and twisted layers of rock. The scenery is so spectacular it has been the backdrop for Hollywood movies including The Electric Horseman and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.
There are a number of trails in the park ranging from ½ mile to 8 miles and from easy to difficult, add in the endless scrambling to be done on the rocks and you can stay busy for some time. Plus if you are into Technical Climbing there are over 170 designated routes and you can get permits to do some canyoneering if that’s your thing.
For us we just wanted to hike a few trails and do a little scrambling on rocks so first off we headed to a trail called the Butterfly Trail which is a 2 mile trail rated at moderate that sent us winding along the west side of Petrified Dunes and provided some nice views.
Next we did the White Rocks / Lava Flow Overlook trail that was 4 miles and also rated as moderate that took us through lava flows, juniper stands and once again offered up some great views of West Canyon.
Then we headed to a trail called Pioneer Names that was a ½ trail rated as easy. This trail lead us pioneer names written in axle grease on the mountain walls dating back to 1883.
And last but not least we then headed to Jenny’s Canyon which was another ½ mile trail rated as easy. This trail took us to a narrow slot canyon and also a path that lead up to a scenic overlook.
After we spent a few hours at Snow Canyon State Park we headed into St George and had a bite to eat at Georges Corner Restaurant & Pub.
Back in the day Georges was called “The Big Hand Café” that was an icon in the area and a stopping place for tourists as they traveled through Southern Utah. The Greyhound bus would make its one stop in town at the Big Hand and each time it pulled in the waitresses would holler “bus in”, and they would get ready to serve the hungry travelers. So with its history it just made sense for us to eat there and have an adult beverage before heading back home.
That pretty much takes care of our stay in the Mesquite area. From Mesquite we had originally planned to have a couple longer travel days with a couple 2 or 3 night stops so we could make it to La Pine Oregon to visit with some friends before working our way to Eugene to again see some good friends before making our way to Grants Pass for a 1 month stay but mother nature changed our minds.
We decided to just travel 160 miles to Pahrump Nevada and hang out for a week in hope some of the cold & wet weather would clear out before we make our way north, but I think mother-nature is not done changing our plans. We will go more into that in our next update but at this point we are scratching our heads and looking at alternatives.