We had decided to stay in Kanab because it was both close to Zion and also Kanab is the location for the Wave lottery. What is the Wave lottery you ask? Well at some point in time Windows put an image of the Wave rock formation on it’s desktop, just adding to it’s already high fame, due to the nature of the rock and to ensure it is not damaged only 20 visitors are allowed to the Wave each day. Ten of these permits are issued some months in advance and the other ten are issued the day prior – hence a lottery to win one of these elusive permits.
We were there, we had to throw our hat into the ring!
Today we were super lucky, there were only 30 people applying, we had been told on Friday there were 200+!! Unfortunately though, it was not our day and our number was not drawn.
The weather had gotten a little worse over night, with a dusting of snow about the place, so not a good day to head back to Zion. We decided instead to jump in the car and head in the direction of Page and figure it out on the way.
We decided to head into Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument and up the Cottonwood Road. At the visitors centre we had been told that the road can get a little hairy in winter but there had not been any reports of such weather just yet so we decided to head on up. The scenery was incredible!! The rock formations were stunning and the striations in the rocks were super cool!
Whilst we had been told of a couple of spots to stop on the way, we decided to pull over and go for our own little scramble across some cool rock formations we saw along the way. Then we continued up to the end of the road, turned around and drove back.
As snow started to fall we checked out the Grosvenor Arches, the snow just made it a little more impressive and magical.
Our next stop on the way back was at the Cottonwood Narrows, a canyon that we walked into. As the Cottonwood Road is a little bit of ‘the road less travelled’ we were able to get the place to ourselves to enjoy. We took a turn within the canyon and ended up stumbling across what looks to be an old waterfall filled with sandstone which we ran to the top of.
As we turned back, the snow just got heavier and heavier. This is the heaviest snow I have been in to date. Travelling back out the road we got stuck probably about 12 miles from the highway 😦 Anthony did an amazing job trying to get us up this muddy hill but we just kept slipping and sliding all the way back down (I won’t pretend I didn’t have white knuckles gripping onto the door handle!!). Eventually a local came down the hill and told us he had gotten himself stuck on this road multiple times before and the only way out of it is to drive the long way around, back up to the end of the road, past Bryce Canyon (devastating driving past considering we had decided not to go given it was a little out of the way), back down to Kanab and across to Page. Basically a 3.5 hour detour when we were only 1/2 hour away from Page when we got stuck. Just adding to our woes was the fact that the snow storm just continued and we had to negotiate this as well on our long drive!
We eventually arrived in Page at the Rodeway Inn around 9pm, I think the girl behind the desk was none too pleased as it looked like she might have been hanging around just waiting for us to check in…WHOOPS!