By Laura A. Crookless, It's A Wanderful Life, Jan. 23, 2023
Zion National Park is one of the most beautiful places on Earth. With its stunning red rocks and majestic mountains, it has been drawing millions of visitors from all over the world each year. But Zion isn’t just a place to take in the view—there are plenty of great hikes, interesting wildlife, and unique lodging opportunities that make this park an unforgettable destination. Let’s explore!
The Virgin River
The area now known as Zion National Park was first inhabited by Native Americans thousands of years ago. The Paiutes were the first settlers in what is now known as Southern Utah. In 1909, President Theodore Roosevelt designated Mukuntuweap National Monument—the predecessor to what would later become Zion National Park. In 1918, President Woodrow Wilson changed its name to Zion National Monument and it became a national park in 1919. Today, the Park covers 229 square miles and includes some of the most iconic scenery in Utah including Angels Landing, Kolob Canyon, and the Zion Narrows.
Angel's Landing Trail
There are many popular hikes at Zion including Angel’s Landing which is considered one of the most iconic hikes in America. Other popular hikes include Observation Point Trail, Riverside Walk Trail, Emerald Pools Trail and Weeping Rock Trail. Each hike offers something special for hikers of all levels from beginner to experienced.
One of the most popular hiking trails here is that of Angel's Landing – a strenuous but rewarding hiking experience with numerous breathtaking views along the route. The trail covers just over 5 miles, gaining 1500 feet in elevation during the 4 hour hike. Prepare to take lots of breaks as you go to truly appreciate this hiking experience! And while there are many trickier and steep areas, safety cables and chains ensure that your journey up and down Angel's Landing will be a memorable yet safe one.
Hiking the Narrows is an unforgettable experience - taking you through one of the most breathtaking canyons on Earth. This incredible hiking trail starts at the bottom --walking upstream along the Virgin River past steep sandstone walls. Along your journey, you'll discover spectacular views of waterfalls, springs and hanging gardens as far as your eye can see -- such natural beauty must be seen to be believed.
Hiking The Narrows
If you’re looking for a place to stay inside Zion then you have two options—the lodge or cabins. The lodge is set in the middle of the Park with spectacular views, while the cabins offer more privacy and peace and quiet away from other guests. Both offer a unique experience so it just depends on what kind of experience you’re looking for during your stay at the park.
The Cabins At Zion Lodge
The wildlife at Zion is varied and diverse with everything from big cats like mountain lions to bighorn sheep that can be seen grazing in meadows throughout the park. There are also smaller mammals like deer as well as birds such as hawks and eagles that call this park home making it a great spot for birdwatchers too!
Big Horn Sheep
Whenever you're hiking, safety needs to be top of mind - it's your responsibility. Zion is considered an extreme hiking destination as trails can be difficult and dangerous if not taken seriously. Always check the weather before visiting and don't forget to wear appropriate hiking gear such as sturdy shoes, long pants, layers, and bring plenty of water. Read trail warnings and never underestimate the power of nature; hiking in Zion can take longer than you anticipate due to elevation change and terrain differences. Above all else - know your limits! Have fun but please remember that safety starts with you when hiking in Zion National Park!
Whether you’re a hiker looking for something challenging or someone who simply wants to take in the view, there’s something for everyone at Zion National Park. From hiking trails with amazing views to unique lodging options with breathtaking vistas, this national park has it all! Plus with its diverse wildlife it makes for an incredible experience no matter how long you plan on staying here. So come explore what this park has to offer—you won’t regret it!
For more information about Zion National Park https://www.nps.gov/zion/index.htm
For more information about Zion Lodge https://www.zionlodge.com/
For more information about It's A Wanderful Life https://itsawanderfullife.store/