Thursday, March 21, 2013

Hogle Zoo

After waking up to a pair of well-rested (and restless) boys, and not anticipating the arrival of Grace and James and baby Eli back home until that night, we all (my mom, Emma and I) decided to make a trip to the zoo.

The plan had originally included a pregnant Grace, with the hopes that a long walk might indue labor, but alas, she did it on her own the day we wanted to go.

So, after a nice, long, slow morning, we finally headed out the door to make our way to the Hogle Zoo around 11am...
...and just as we were piling out the door and into my car, Grace texted my mom to say she had be released early! And that they were already on their way back...
...well, obviously, my mom wanted to stay to help Grace transition into being at home (though we all know it was really just to be with Eli, haha), so we left her at home and made our way to Salt Lake City on our own.

(side note: Not to toot my own horn, but I'm pretty good with directions...except for when they're wrong. And even then, I'm still pretty amazing. My nickname was once "The Navigator" if that gives you any indication of my skills. Anyway, the directions we had to get there became really confusing after we got off the freeway...as in: "Take a slight right onto a street that doesn't exist, or if it does, it won't have a visible street sign..."
I pretty much winged it until I somehow came upon a street that was a part of the original directions...and after driving back and forth through all sorts of neighborhoods, and passing a church house, a golf course, and many, many camouflaged speed bumps, we FINALLY stumbled upon the zoo...and even then, it was the employee entrance. Moral of the story: Google maps suck AND...the Hogle Zoo needs to be located less in the middle of the suburbs.)

Once we arrived we had to rent a stroller (and a very kind zoo member offered me her discount!!)
and after the so-called "he's-got-crazy-hair-you-can't-miss-him" never showed up with our stroller, I yoinked one out of the rental returns area.
(My patience had run out after 10 minutes...sorry, not sorry.)

AND THEN...we finally started our excursion.

I didn't take very many pictures, but it's not that big of a zoo. Especially since 1/3 of it was under construction...

We visited everything there, and one of Wyatt's favorites were the elephants...

He was fascinated by the teeth. I kept asking him to show me his teeth...and he did, just not to the camera...


We also REALLY enjoyed the otters and the seals and sea lions. The otters had their own exhibit and their keeper was feeding them just as we got there. I'm sad I didn't take any pictures, but the exhibit partly below ground level, so we could see under water. It was really fun to watch them swim around.

It was kind of the same for the sea lions/seals. We spent almost 20 minutes watching them from above their enclosure, swimming around and around, and then we went below the water, which was even more cool...




I LOVED that they came right up to the window...


And then the last place I really enjoyed was the small animals enclosure, which was really cool. The middle was a greenhouse of sorts, really hot and humid with tropical plants and animals inside (which was strange, walking in from dead, brown, cold Utah), and then surrounding that were more enclosures with different animals from around the world...so you basically walked around in a circle and opened doors into different worlds...





Wyatt really liked the snakes, I liked the bats, and Emma liked the porcupine...we left after a few hours (and after Wyatt dumped a water bottle all over Logan's legs--which Logan didn't mind) and made our way back to Springville and the little baby Eli...

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