A Room With a View

zion_6846-editThis was the view from our “motel” patio for two nights in Zion National Park. While it may look calm and serene, it wasn’t the entire time. 

Zion NP was the first camping destination during the 2 week trip. All of the other nights were spent in hotels/motels of varying quality. Based on our experience in Winslow, AZ, this was a big step up. It was clean and fairly quiet for a public campground. 

The little yellow tent has served us well.  I bought it nearly two years ago at REI’s “used gear” sale. REI is a great store if you spend any amount of time outdoors. They have a bullet proof return policy and will take virtually anything back if you’re not happy with it. I was making an exchange once and the guy next to me was returning some ski poles that he’d purchased 7 years prior because “they wore out.” Once or twice a year, depending on the store volume, they hold a used gear sale.  All of the stuff that was returned, for whatever reason, goes up for sale. The little yellow tent was one such item.  There was nothing wrong with it and it appeared to have been used at least once. I ended up paying $80 for a tent that goes for ~$200 new in the store.  It hasn’t failed us yet.

The night that this picture was taken was calm and reasonably warm, until about 8pm.  At first a little breeze started up. The breeze turned into “wind” and then started gusting up to 40 mph. Even with the wind howling, the little yellow tent barely moved. I couldn’t have been happier with it. The tent next to us, a large blue dome thingy, wasn’t fairing so well. It belonged to a couple of women who came in late, set it up in the dark, and then spent what had to be a miserable night. Ever gust of wind made it buck and fold, nearly in half. I kept waiting for it to snap but was never rewarded.

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