Explore: Dive in to summer vacation at Zion Ponderosa

A two-tiered pool area with hot tubs and water slides provide the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate after a long day of adventuring at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

SOUTHERN UTAH — On the outskirts of Zion National Park in a setting both rustic and wondrous lies a 4,000-acre ranch resort where high adventure awaits; so why not dive in?

The day starts at dawn as the sun crests the eastern hills and lights up the property. The sounds of people rising from their tents or taking in the view from their cabin decks ring with anticipation.

What will we do today?

Views of Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News
Views of Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

The list of available activities ranges from ping pong, foosball and billiards — all of which are included in your stay — to rock climbing, zip lining, horseback riding, all-terrain vehicle rentals and tours, canyoneering and much more.

Take a rappelling trip, like Tine Kops of Denmark did with her family, or explore the property at a more leisurely pace on the back of a horse or tootling around in a golf cart rental.

Whether you are from Denmark or a little closer to home, Zion Ponderosa is an idyllic spot for summer vacation

“It is really fun as a tourist,” Kops said, “but it is also nice to come and see Americans on vacation, it is quite cool.”

Summer activities go well into the evening with sunset jeep tours, dutch oven dinners, rodeos featuring the ranch’s very capable wranglers, barn dances and after dark zip line rides.

Make a splash

After the day’s exertions, or maybe as part of them, cool off in the property’s two-tiered pool, complete with two hot tubs and water slides.

A two-tiered pool area with hot tubs and water slides provide the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate after a long day of adventuring at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News
A two-tiered pool area with hot tubs and water slides provide the perfect place to relax and rejuvenate after a long day of adventuring at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

Ponderosa’s pool area is the perfect place to escape the heat of the summer sun and take a wild water slide ride or relax in a jetted hot tub while enjoying stunning views of the area that practically kisses Zion National Park.

The pool is lit up at night creating a gorgeous ambiance for a romantic evening under the stars.

Summertime and the living is busy

Summer season, which lasts from the end of May until the beginning of September, is the resort’s busy season, front desk receptionist Erin Packard said, so it is best to make reservations two to three months in advance in order to get the best pick of accommodations.

Roasting marshmallows over a contained fire pit at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah,  July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News
Roasting marshmallows over a contained fire pit at Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, Utah, July 11, 2015 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

Lodging ranges from basic tent camping all the way to large luxury cabins, with camping being the easiest option for those spur-of-the-moment trips.

“We always offer camping,” Packard said. “If you can’t get a site, we have our overflow camping.”

And if you live nearby and just want to come up for the day, you can do that, too. Activities like the zip line and climbing walls are available for day-trippers and are taken as they come, Mattie Warner, one of the resorts recreation team members, said.

You can even plan a more lengthy excursion like horseback riding or an ATV tour, but it is best to call in advance and reserve your spot, Warner said.

No matter what you choose, you will find Zion Ponderosa a cool place to find some summer fun.

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1 Comment

  • SteveSGU July 17, 2015 at 9:10 am

    If

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    then

    you need to clearly state when an article is really an ad.

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