That morning we drove by the road to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon but didn't have time to go in. We proceeded to Zion National Park, arriving in late afternoon, in time to drive through the park, and stop twice for photo-ops and once for the restroom. Ken and I were sitting at the front of the bus and were first to the facilities, so we sneaked off for a 20-minute hike.
So that's the sum of our national park experience: two photo ops and a 20-minute hike. They were absolutely wonderful.
Driving through the magnificent red rocks and rainbow geology of the west is always great, and we saw some beautiful sights on our 1400-mile journey past the locked gates. But when they set up the national parks, they really did take all the good stuff. Now I'm thinking about how to go back and see what we missed.