It's Al. Sorry all you Christy fans.
As you leave Bryce National Park toward the west, you come across another park called Red Canyon (I think that's it's name). It's a very, very cool park. Almost as nice as Bryce but in a different way. Definitely worth a stop.
Anyways, we stopped in there on our way out. As we were looking around inside, one of the rangers was talking to another visitor who was going to Zion National Park, and the ranger said they would probably be disappointed going there (to Zion). Christy told me the ranger had said that as we were getting back into the truck to head to Zion. But it didn't matter, we were bound and determined to go anyhow.
So we drive the short distance to Zion, and we come in on the east side. Just a side note... if you have an oversized vehicle or RV you have to pay a $15 fee for the park rangers to create a one lane road for you to pass through part of the east entrance. Keep that in mind.
Basically, when you come into the east side of Zion National Park, you are coming into one of the most incredible drives you will ever experience. The drive goes for miles and it covers some of the most breathtaking cliffs, geologic formations, and rocks you will ever see. The road starts at the top, east side of the park and then it drops down into the valley where most of the park infrastructure is located (visitors center, museum, hiking trails, campgrounds, etc.). At one point, you pass through a tunnel. This tunnel is one of the coolest tunnels on the planet. It is 1.1 miles long. There are no lights inside. There are only a couple of short, cut-outs in the tunnel wall where you can peak out and see where you are. The views last only the briefest of moments, but they just give you a slight taste of whats to come. The thing is... the tunnel was built in the 1930's, so it wasn't designed for large vehicles, so they have to close off the other direction of traffic for larger vehicles. BUT, if you are at all thinking about doing this drive - DO IT! It is an absolute thrill! And worth the $15 if you just do it once in your life.
We were at the park about 3 days. We didn't have to pay the fee with our small trailer. But we came in on that road. We drove it a second time for sight-seeing. And we left on that road heading towards the Grand Canyon.
The east entrance road into Zion National Park gets **** - 4 stars from me, even if you had to pay the $15 fee.
The ranger who said that person would be disappointed visiting Zion was out of their mind. It is a superb park.