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Zion National Park

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The Wonder

Towering canyon walls. Sandstone cliffs. Backcountry trails. Otherworldly passageways beneath massive rock.

The Adventures

Hiking, camping, birdwatching, bicycling, rock climbing, horseback riding, canyoneering, ranger programs, ranger shuttle tours


One for the Bucket List

Hike the Subway (aka the Left Fork of North Creek) through an amazing narrow slot canyon (pictured), one of the most hidden wonders of the entire National Park System. The hike is highly popular -- definitely a conquest -- but the adventure isn't for amateur enthusiasts. Each of the two Subway routes requires outdoorsy commitment, skill and proper equipment.

Bottom-and-Back Hike: "A strenuous 9-mile round-trip hike requiring route finding, stream crossings and scrambling over boulders. The route is often slippery. The hike begins and ends at the Left Fork Trailhead off of the Kolob Terrace Road."

Top-Down Hike: "A strenuous 9-1/2 mile hike requiring rappel skills and 60 feet of rope or webbing. The route also requires swimming through several deep pools of very cold debris-filled water. The route begins at the Wildcat Canyon Trailhead and ends at the Left Fork Trailhead." Please note that unusually heavy snowmelt might cause temporary closures.

Permits: Hiking the Subway requires a permit, which can be obtained one of two ways. One: Enter the monthly lottery that runs from January through July -- each month's lottery is for permits three months in advance (i.e., enter the January lottery for a permit for an April hike). No lotteries are held for permits for November to March. Two: Obtain a walk-in permit when the Backcountry Desk opens the day before your hike. Walk-in permits are first-come, first-served.

Seasons and Hours

The Zion Lodge, Zion Canyon Visitor Center, Kolob Canyons Visitor Center, Zion Human History Museum and the park's Backcountry Desk are open year round, with hours that vary slightly by season. The Zion Nature Center is only open from Memorial Day to Labor Day weekends.

The South Campground (126 campsites) is closed November to early March, but the Watchman Campground (185 campsites) is open year round.

Getting There

Take State Route 9 to the main Zion Canyon entrance, where the Zion Canyon Visitor Center is located. To enter via the Kolob Canyon entrance on the northwestern edge of the park, take Interstate 15. See map.

Special Note for RVs/Campers: "Any vehicle that is 7 feet 10 inches (2.4 meters) in width and/or 11 feet 4 inches (3.4 meters) in height or larger is required to have a tunnel escort through the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel. Have your vehicle measured at the entrance station when you arrive at the park."

Average Temps (ºF) High/Low

Temps in the canyon can vary, or be much cooler.

January - 52/29
April - 72/43
July - 99/69
October - 78/49

Approximate Distance From...

Bryce Canyon National Park - 80 miles
Las Vegas, NV - 150 miles
Grand Canyon National Park - 240 miles
Salt Lake City, UT - 300 miles
Arches National Park - 315 miles
Phoenix, AZ - 400 miles


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Fill Your Bucket List With Bewilderness

America the beautiful. You got that right. From the skytops of the world's tallest trees to the underwater color-play of tropical reefs, the National Park Service (NPS) oversees hundreds of parks and areas to conserve many of our country's most precious natural wonders and living treasures.

Otherworldly landscapes. Thriving wildlife. Hidden, wicked-cool marvels of time and nature. Humbling, sweeping views that are not just breathtaking but truly breath-giving, so inspiring you might find them. Whether you're a mobile-mad workaholic, family trooper or just a mid-life meditator, we hope you have time to enjoy it all.

Affordable Adventure

Fewer than half of the national parks charge entrance fees, which usually range from $5 to $25 (often just per vehicle). Children 16 and under are always admitted for free. Daily fees for camping usually range between $10 and $20 per party.

The NPS offers annual America the Beautiful Passes that cover entrance fees at any national park.

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