3 Great Overnight Backpacking Hikes in ZionOct 24, 2017
3 Great Overnight Backpacking Hikes in Zion
There are few outdoor activities that compare to overnight backpacking, and there are few places that compare to Zion National Park when it comes to overnight backpacking. It’s an incredibly rewarding endeavor on so many levels, and Zion is the perfect place to do it. There are many trails to choose from that are prime for an overnighter and we feel a little strange curating a list that excludes some of them because the truth is that they are all well worth your time. But nevertheless, if we were forced to select only three Zion backpacking routes, such a list would probably look something like this.
West Rim Trail
Of all the ways to hike this one, we especially enjoy starting at Lava Point and taking the top-down route. To get to Lava Point you’ll need to drive 19 miles from Springdale. Take our word for it and don’t take your own car. Call one of the local adventure companies to take you up there or get a friend to drop you off. The last thing you want to worry about after the hike is completed is how you’re going to get back up to your car. Even though this hike is almost all downhill, it’s still very strenuous. One of the best things about the top-down West Rim Trail is how the scenery progressively gets better as you go along. This Zion backpacking trail connects to the path up to Angel’s Landing which is certainly the highlight of the whole excursion. Total length: 18 miles.
The Narrows (Top-Down Route)
The Narrows top-down is without question one of the most enjoyable hikes in America. Though starting at the bottom and working your way up until you have to turn back due to time constraints is certainly tons of fun, it’s the top-down overnight route that gives you all that The Narrows has to offer and will without question provide you with an experience that you will never forget. There are sections that are so incredible it doesn’t seem real. Hiking the full Narrows is about 17 miles in length and allows you the option (reservations required) to stay the night at one of the many designated campsites along the river. Make sure that you consider the weather when planning your trip through The Narrows. The risk of a flash flood isn’t worth going forward with scheduled dates. Reschedule in that situation.
La Verkin Creek Trail
Of all the trails on our list, this one is the shortest. It’s also one of Zion’s unsung trails, so to speak, which makes it even more exciting. The scenery on this two-day hike is amazing and it’s a shame that more people don’t put this one on their itineraries. Have you heard of the Kolob Arch? This is the trail where you’ll see it. This is a great hike to take if you want to add mileage and backpack for an additional third day. Take the trail toward Willis Creek when you come upon it to elongate your experience. The campsites along this trail are notoriously great so don’t plan on being disappointed. This trail lends for prime Zion backpacking.