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Kolob to Las Vegas or remain in Zion?

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On the advice of people on this forum, we have decided to shorten our stay in Springdale to 2 nights and to spend the night before our 11 AM flight in Las Vegas. But we are more interested in spending time in Zion than in Las Vegas, so we plan to spend a full day before the drive. Is the Kolob section closer to vegas? We thought perhaps we could do some hiking in that section before leaving.

I thought perhaps a short hike in Zion proper, lunch and check out of the hotel and then go over to the Kolob section. Is that a reasonable plan and would that shorten the final drive to Vegas? I can see from the map that it is further north but appears to be closer to the highway. Is that correct?

How difficult is the Taylor creek hike? Thanks

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