Hike

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Hiking in Zion National Park is perhaps one of the most rewarding things you will ever experience. The wide array of trails vary in difficulty levels as well as scenic views. Many of the park’s most popular trails are accessed from the valley floor along the 6 mile Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. From April to October, this area is closed to private vehicles and accessed by the free Zion Canyon Shuttle System. During the remaining months, you can drive your own vehicle to the trail head parking areas. More information about the shuttle system can be found here. For some of the more remote trail heads such as the Zion Narrows, West Rim Trail, and The Subway. Below are some helpful links for choosing your trails, as well as a brief overview of some of the park’s most popular hikes.

National Park Service Hiking Map & Guide

Joe’s Recommended Zion Hikes


Easy Hikes

Pa’rus Trail

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Paved trail follows the Virgin River from the South Campground to Canyon Junction. Wheelchairs may need assistance.

Location: Zion Canyon Visitor Center
Distance: 3.5 miles/approx. 2 hours



Archeology Trail

Short, but steep. Starts across from the entrance to the visitor center parking lot. Climbs to the outlines of several prehistoric buildings. Trailside exhibits.

Location: Zion Canyon Visitor Center
Distance: 0.4 miles/approx. 0.5 hour



Lower Emerald Pool Trail

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Minor drop-offs. Paved trail leads to the Lower Emerald Pool and waterfalls. Connects to the Kayenta and Upper Emerald Pool Trails.

Location: Zion Lodge
Distance: 1.2 miles/approx. 1 hour



The Grotto Trail

The trail connects the Zion Lodge to The Grotto. Can be combined with the Lower Emerald Pool and Kayenta Trails to create a 2.5-mile loop.

Location: Zion Lodge – The Grotto
Distance: 1 mile/approx. 0.5 hour



Weeping Rock Trail

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Short, but steep. Minor drop-offs. Paved trail ends at a rock alcove with dripping springs. Trailside exhibits.

Location: Weeping Rock
Distance: 0.4 miles/approx. 0.5 hour



Riverside Walk

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Minor drop-offs. Paved trail follows the Virgin River along the bottom of a narrow canyon. Trailside exhibits. Wheelchairs may need assistance.

Location: Temple of Shinawava
Distance: 2.2 miles/approx. 1.5 hours



Moderate Hikes

Watchman Trail

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Minor drop-offs. Ends at viewpoint of the Towers of the Virgin, lower Zion Canyon, and Springdale.

Location: Zion Canyon Visitor Center
Distance: 2.7 miles/approx. 2 hours



Sand Bench Trail

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Commercial horse trail from March to October. Hike atop a massive landslide under The Sentinel. Deep sand and little shade.

Location: Zion Lodge
Distance: 7.6 miles/approx. 5 hours



Upper Emerald Pool Trail

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Minor drop-offs. A sandy and rocky trail that climbs to the Upper Emerald Pool at the base of a cliff.

Location: Zion Lodge
Distance: 1 mile/approx. 1 hour



Kayenta Trail

Long drop-offs. An unpaved climb to the Emerald Pools. Connects The Grotto to the Emerald Pools Trails.

Location: The Grotto
Distance: 2 miles/approx. 2 hours



Canyon Overlook Trail

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Long drop-offs, mostly fenced. Rocky and uneven trail ends at viewpoint of Pine Creek Canyon and lower Zion Canyon. Parking lot is right turn only.

Location: Zion-Mt. Carmel Hwy
Distance: 1 mile/approx. 1 hour



Taylor Creek Trail

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Limited to 12 people per group. Follows the Middle Fork of Taylor Creek past two homestead cabins to Double Arch Alcove.

Location: Kolob Canyons Road
Distance: 5 miles/approx. 4 hours



Timber Creek Overlook Trail

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Follows a ridge to a small peak with views of Timber Creek, Kolob Terrace, and Pine Valley Mountains.

Location: Kolob Canyons Road
Distance: 1 mile/approx. 0.5 hour




Strenuous Hikes

Angels Landing via West Rim Trail

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Long drop-offs. Not for young children or anyone fearful of heights. Last section is a route along a steep, narrow ridge to the summit.

Location: The Grotto
Distance: 5.4 miles/approx. 4 hours



Hidden Canyon Trail

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Long drop-offs. Not for anyone fearful of heights. Follows along a cliff face to the mouth of a narrow canyon.

Location: Weeping Rock
Distance: 2.4 miles/approx. 3 hours



Observation Point via East Rim Trail

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Long drop-offs. Climbs through Echo Canyon to viewpoint of Zion Canyon. Access to Cable Mountain, Deertrap Mountain, and East Mesa Trails.

Location: Weeping Rock
Distance: 8 miles/approx. 6 hours



The Narrows via East Rim Trail

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Check conditions at the visitor center before attempting. High water levels can prevent access to The Narrows.

Location: Temple of Shinawava
Distance: 9.4 miles/approx. 8 hours



Kolob Arch via La Verkin Creek Trail

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Limited to 12 people per group. Follows Timber and La Verkin Creeks. A side trail leads to Kolob Arch, one of the world’s largest freestanding arches.

Location: Kolob Canyons Road
Distance: 14 miles/approx. 8 hours



Quick Facts

  • Did you know that many people consider Zion the best hiking destination in the world?
  • Did you know that back-country permits are required for all overnight hiking expeditions in Zion?
  • Did you know that some of Zion’s most popular hikes have paved trails and are accessible for everyone?

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