Camping Gear

One Incomparable Place: Hiking and Backpacking in Zion National Park

Posted On February 12, 2017 at 4:06 am by / Comments Off on One Incomparable Place: Hiking and Backpacking in Zion National Park

By Michael Lanza

Even in the Southwest, a region where the extraordinary becomes ordinary, Zion National Park stands out. Other places have natural arches, spires, and ancient cliff dwellings, but no place really matches Zion’s grandeur: cliffs up to 2,000 feet tall stretching for miles, the rock’s purity of white and deep burgundy, and patterns of striations rippling across a span of stone that dwarfs Man’s greatest buildings and monuments. Perhaps that’s why it was Utah’s first national park, designated in the same year, 1919, as Grand Canyon and Acadia.

Zion deserves the attention of every avid and casual hiker, backpacker, and parent wanting to raise a child with a love for America’s greatest natural heritage: our parks. And experiencing the breadth of opportunities Zion offers demands a serious commitment of time, with hikes ranging from short and easy to multi-day backpacking, including a classic north-south traverse of the entire park. Then there’s the technical canyoneering possibilities in Zion, which open up an entirely new world.

The photo gallery below spotlights images from the many hiking and backpacking trips I’ve taken in Zion.

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West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.
La Verkin Creek, Kolob Canyons, Zion.
Hop Valley, Zion.
West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.
West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.
Northgate Peaks overlook, Zion.
West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.
Angels Landing, Zion National Park
Angels Landing, Zion National Park
Angels Landing, Zion National Park
Double Arch Alcove, Taylor Creek Trail, Zion National Park.
Taylor Creek Trail, Zion National Park.
Kolob Canyons Viewpoint, Zion National Park.
The Subway, Zion National Park.
The Subway, Zion National Park.
The Narrows, Zion National Park.
The Narrows, Zion National Park.
The Narrows, Zion National Park.
West Rim Trail, Zion National Park.

For more photos and tips on planning your trip here, see a menu of all of my stories about Zion National Park, including my feature stories about a family backpacking trip, a 50-mile dayhike across the park, and hiking Zion’s Subway, and this photo gallery from hiking in Zion’s Kolob Canyons.

See also all of my stories about national park adventures, hiking and backpacking in southern Utah, and family adventures at The Big Outside, and these stories:

The 10 Best Backpacking Trips in the Southwest
10 Tips For Getting a Hard-to-Get National Park Backcountry Permit
My 25 Most Scenic Days of Hiking Ever
Gear Review: The Best Gear Duffles

 

Do you like The Big Outside? I’m Michael Lanza, the creator of The Big Outside, recognized as a top outdoors blog by USA Today, a Trip Advisor site, and others. Get email updates about new stories and free gear giveaways by entering your email address in the box at the bottom of this story, in the left sidebar, or on my About page, and follow my adventures on Facebook and Twitter.

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