Visit Zion National Park in Utah - Kam of Campfire Chic

Hike This: Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park

Have you hiked Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park? It’s one of the iconic adventures you see captured on Instagram that does not involve a permit or specialized gear. It takes you from the canyon floor, up switchbacks, and along a route that involves holding onto chains to keep you from falling off a cliff. It’s strenuous and can be crowded, but the views are a must-see for visitors.

Zion NP is one of my favorite National Parks. Alex and I have visited the park several times and can be considered park evangelists with how we gush about the park when we talk to our friends and family. It is the park I recommend to folks who don’t consider themselves very outdoorsy or aren’t interested/able to tackle long or strenuous hikes in order to see beautiful parts of a park. I love that Zion is breathtaking from the moment you enter the park and there are experiences for everyone.

West Rim Trail Sign Toward Angels Landing in Zion National Park - Campfire Chic

Canyon in Zion National Park - Travel with Kam of Campfire Chic

 

You would think I happily tackled Angel’s Landing on my first trip to the park but after seeing plenty of photos of overcrowded trails and knowing that not all park guests understand that there is actual danger in parks, I had zero interest in heading up to the iconic perch overlooking the canyon.

And then it happened.

We joined some friends for a quick weekend in October and Angel’s Landing was on the agenda for the weekend. I didn’t want to be a spoil sport so I pulled on my leggings, grabbed my favorite daypack, and headed to the trailhead.

We took the shuttle to the trailhead and made sure to use the restrooms available near the dropoff. Keep in mind that this is a heavy-use trail and nowhere for you to water a tree, use the facilities before getting on the trail.

And then it was all up, up, up. Up the exposed path, through the shaded canyon that brought us to the bottom of the Walter’s Wiggle switchbacks, across Scout lookout, and along the ridge to the very end. I’m glad we started relatively early in the morning because the weather was warm for late October and it really warmed up as we headed down the trail.

Canyon in Zion National Park - Travel with Kam of Campfire Chic

If you’re worried about your ability to get to the top or if you’re short on time but want to get some great views of the canyon, let me tell you this: you don’t need to go all the way up! In fact, there are some fantastic vistas before you get to Walter’s Wiggles. You can get your views and your cute Instagram selfie without dedicating extra time to make it to the top!

The views from the top are fantastic but know that the thrill of clinging to the ridge isn’t for everyone. Don’t pressure anyone in your party to continue toward the endpoint if they seem extra nervous or straight up tell you they don’t want to continue. There are plenty of people enjoying the shade and ranger program from the Scout Landing area so you won’t be alone while you wait for the rest of your party to make the trek to the end.

Angels Landing Zion National Park - Kam of Campfire Chic

View from Angels Landing Zion National Park Utah - Kam of Campfire Chic

Some things I didn’t realize:

  • The trail is mostly paved. That is, until you reach the split in the trail (Scout Lookout) where you can head up to West Rim Trail or continue to Angel’s Landing
  • Scout Lookout has (vault) toilets available
  • There was more scrambling involved than I anticipated! Since I don’t work out very often I was reasonably sore the next day

At the end of the day, the trail is straightforward and you can buy plenty of souvenirs in the visitors center after you make it to the top to remember your grand adventure. This hike may be more interesting to those who don’t want to get rentals to hike up the Narrows but want to check a “must do” item off of their visit checklist.

Links to Angel’s Landing Resources:

Have fun and be safe!

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in Active, Adventure, Hiking, National Park, National Parks

I let 2017 get the best of me. I let myself feel guilty over enjoying things and wanting to share that joy with others online. I let my projects take a backseat in favor of things that aren’t exactly ‘bloggable’. I think it was exactly what I needed.

My One Little Word for 2017 was GO and it was a great choice for me. I hope to make a mini-project soon to capture that word and my experience with it, but there’s no time to lose in selecting my word for 2018.

2018 will be the year of HOME.

Home is where I come at the end of a long day at work.

Home is where I feel my best.

Home is a place where I can draw a map of the area from memory.

Home is my tiny family on the couch watching tv and reading.

I’m looking to focus on upgrading areas of our home life, re-homing things that no longer serve us, and making wherever we are exactly where we want to be. 

This is the longest I’ve lived in one place since I was 18 and I was listening to a podcast that casually mentioned, “the clutter that accumulates when you live somewhere for a long time” and that was what started this. I started focusing on HOME  just before Christmas with a deep (deep deep) clean of our refrigerator, a post-Christmas donation drop off, and continued on January 1st by cleaning out our pantry.

HOME isn’t a flashy One Little Word. It’s not something that I think will inspire many people or lead to deep thoughts on my capacity or anything special. But I know it’s what I need for 2018. I want my purchases, my energy, my focus, and time focused on HOME.

Here’s to a great year :)

Previous One Little Words:

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in 2018, One Little Word

Hi friends! 30 Days of Lists will return for December 2017 and I wanted to let you know that registration is open.

Visit our main website to learn more about the challenge and register.

I am looking forward to this round of 30 Days of Lists because I am moving away from the pocket page albums I have been doing for the last few years and going back to a nice handmade mini-album.

I don’t think I’m doing a traditional December Daily this year and this is a good way for me to house my lists, have fun using my supplies, and keeping this project as low-stress as possible.

30 Days of Lists December Inspiration - Campfire Chic

Creatives included: @craftymue @dansmonecrane @mrsscrapandplan

This is my favorite project to work on because it’s so simple yet captures snapshots of my life throughout the year…and I get to do this alongside an amazing community of Listers who share a love for lists. My co-host, Amy, and I share our takes on the daily prompts on our private challenge blog and then join in the discussion in the private Facebook group.

We have an awesome team of creatives working with us throughout the year and they are back for December, too! You will see examples from them and learn more about their process for creating lists and how they make this project their own.

We would love to have you join us as we document our December. Register today.

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in 30 Days of Lists

Today’s post is sponsored by Tile Inc., who knows I need help keeping track of things. 

Using Tile to Find Passport - Kam of Campfire Chic

Keeping Track of the Things I Love with Tile

Did you see my post on Instagram a few weeks ago with the photo of the cute lost panda? You can see the video with Ernie’s story and see how the Tile tucked in his pocket helps him get home. As someone who still has her childhood bear, this video gave me all the feels.

What is Tile?

It’s the best-selling Bluetooth tracker that easily attaches to the things you love the most. There is a community behind Tile and they really step up to the “together we find” Tile mantra as they help locate lost items on a daily basis. Like Ernie in that cute video!

Tile isn’t just for your keys or wallet. It’s for things you don’t want to lose.

I received a Tile so I could join this worldwide lost-and-found community and I knew exactly what I needed to do.

If you’ve been reading this site for a few years, you may remember when I shared my U.S. National Parks Passport and talked about how excited I was to fill the passport with cancellations (stamps) over the years and document my trips on this site! Well, I lost that Parks Passport. I have no idea where it went and after a short mourning period, I replaced it (with a special edition version!). I do hope I find my first Parks Passport one day because I had some really cool stamps in there.

I slid my new Tile into the clear pocket that is at the front of my U.S. National Parks Passport. The pocket doesn’t close all the way, so I added some adhesive to the back to get it to stay in there. Now I’ll be able to find it whenever we’re off for an adventure!

US National Parks Passport - Together We Find with Tile - Kam of Campfire Chic

If you forget your U.S. National Parks Passport on your next park visit, here are some tips for documenting your visit:

  • As for a scrap piece of paper from the front desk. Some parks have scrap paper at the stamp kiosk specifically for those of us who lose their Parks Passport!
  • When I was in Zion NP last month, I bought a few postcards and stamped the backs as a way to document my visit!
  • Stamp your hand and take a photo! The stamp won’t last long on your hand but you can print out the image as a wallet-sized photo and include it in your Parks Passport later!

When I get another Tile I plan on attaching one to my favorite controller because at the end of a long night of gaming I seem to leave it in weird places (in the pantry? Why?) and I really dislike wasting time I could be playing with hunting down my controller.

I was joking with my coworkers that if I bring a Tile to use at work, I would totally attach it to my stapler that seems to go missing on the regular or on my badge since I seem to take it off and leave it around…which isn’t good when I need to use it to activate the elevator, get into different offices, access the parking structure, and more.

Learn more about Tile and how it can help you find the things you love.

 

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in Gear Review, Review

REI Outessa Review Mt Hood - Kam Altar

My REI Outessa Weekend

My One Little Word for the year is GO and I think putting that energy out into the universe helped bring the awesome opportunity to partner with Leatherman tools to co-host workshops at REI Outessa in Mt. Hood.

I wasn’t sure if I would be able to shake my imposter syndrome while at an event with some of the people who inspire me to head outdoors. My best friend reminded me I could take an extra day off of work and spend extra time with her in Portland if I went, so the choice became infinitely easier! The event was held the same weekend as the solar eclipse so there was an extra level of excitement in the air…would there be an insane amount of people in the Portland area? Would there be so much traffic that I wouldn’t be able to get back to the airport in time for my flight?

Whenever I felt nervous, I reminded myself to just GO and take it all in stride.

Outessa Mt Hood Leatherman Tent

What is REI Outessa?

Find your crew, do what you love, and try something new in some of the country’s most beautiful outdoor playgrounds. During our three-day retreats designed for women, you can choose from hundreds of activities, from rock climbing and mountain biking to yoga and hiking. All gear for activities, instruction, and chef-prepared meals are included. – Outessa website

Bringing women together to explore the outdoors and share their stories is magic. It was great to have casual discussions with women from all over the country and from so many different outdoor backgrounds. We were all learning from one another and there was zero judgment the entire weekend. I think we were all more concerned with getting plenty of wine and happy hour munchies to care about anything else!

 

Outessa Mt Hood - Navigation Class

I took an introduction to compass and map navigation class and I hope to register for some in-store courses in early 2018. You can find classes and events at your local REI on their website.I did buy a better compass after attending REI Outessa and tried to reference it while on a trip with Shawnté last month because she is so much more experienced than I am when it comes to most outdoor things. I definitely need more practice.

I sat in on Alex Borsuk’s Adventuring with Dogs class and joined a quick class on taking better photos with your phone. There are so many classes and activities offered throughout the weekend and I wish I was able to attend more of them.

Outessa Mt Hood - Class Participants

The workshops I co-hosted were well attended and thankfully small enough that we were able to cozy up inside the Leatherman event tent so we didn’t have to shout or try to be heard over the other workshops being held on either side of us. We spent time with a quick introduction of the brand before going around the circle and having each participant introduce herself and her level of outdoor experience. We made sure to have several tips prepared (with props!) but also made sure to emphasize that this was going to be an open discussion. There was a wealth of knowledge from each group and I know I learned quite a bit.

The part that probably stuck with most of the women was going over the “3 Ps”: Pooping, peeing, and periods. For this workshop we reminded everyone of the basics like the distance you should be from water sources and trail, digging holes vs packing out your waste, and that not all women have periods and not everyone who has a period is a woman, so passing along the menstruation information to all outdoor buddies is important. We should all be more like Dave. Also, we don’t have to always let our periods hold us back from fantastic adventures.

Outessa Mt Hood - Class Sign

A good portion of my time outside of the workshops was spent in the ENO hammock pods set up around the Village area of the event. It was pretty warm in the sun where the vendor tents were set up, so stepping into the shade of the trees was so welcome. It was really relaxing to have a drink in the shade and unwind for a little bit.

One of my favorite things was happy hour! The amazing ladies behind Dirty Gourmet were there and they were so so so sweet to bring me a plate of snacks during one of the evenings because they knew I was helping run an activation at the Leatherman tent. I don’t think they know this, but meeting them was like meeting celebrities! I was a little overwhelmed that they know who I am and that they would even consider taking time out of their busy schedule to bring me food (all the heart eyes for them). I wasn’t able to fit in their cooking class into my schedule due to my workshop schedule. Next time!

Outessa Mt Hood - Dinner with a view

The adventures didn’t end on the mountain, the next day was the eclipse and the Portland area was full of people coming and going so they could be close to the totality zones. I ran into a few Outessa friends (of course we shouted OUTESSA FAM! as soon as we saw one another) in the airport and we stuck together through security and visited each other at different gates as flights got delayed. To close out my Outessa weekend, the woman next to me on my flight into Las Vegas was from Outessa and we turned to each other and said, “I think we’re Instagram friends??” as we settled into our seats. Again, magic.

If you are interested in learning more about Outessa, sign up for the emails so you are the first to know when the dates and locations are released for 2018.

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in Active, Adventure, One Little Word