Backpack the Zion National Park Traverse

Details

Distance

48.3 miles

Elevation Gain

8200 ft

Route Type

Point-to-Point

Added by Angela B

This is an amazing backpack (or trail run for ultra-runners!) that explores the entire width of Zion National Park-- from narrow canyons, to lush valleys rimmed by red rock, to phenomenal vistas overlooking the best of the park.

When doing this point-to-point trail in a west-to east-direction, start at Lee Pass trailhead, about 8 miles up the hill on Kolob Canyon Road from Exit 40 on I-15.

The trail initially descends down and follows La Verkin Creek. At 6.6 miles, there is an optional side trip to Kolob Arch. Just past this junction, is an additional junction for Hop Valley trail. Taking the Hop Valley trail takes you up and out of the La Verkin Creek basin and into the adjacent Hop Valley, a wide, lush, red-rock lined paradise.

After traversing Hop Valley, the trail eventually connects to Wildcat Canyon trail and subsequently to the West Rim trail. The West Rim trail provides phenomenal vistas of areas unseen from the lower park.

The West Rim trail eventually descends to The Grotto trailhead, with the most fantastic views of this park's classic red rock. Along this section, there is an additional optional side trip to climb Angel's Landing.

From The Grotto trailhead, the route continues briefly at the park bottom to Echo Canyon trailhead. At Echo Canyon trailhead, the trail begins to ascend again. This trail enters scenic narrow canyons and then continues to climb as you follow all junctions leading to the East Rim.

Once on the East Rim, the trail gradually descends to the East Rim trailhead, located on UT-9 within eyesight of the East Ranger Station

This is an out-and-back hike. Commercial shuttles are available. Backcountry permits are needed from Zion National Park.

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Leave No Trace

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on.

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