This weekend is opening week for National Parks and to celebrate they’re offering fee free access on Saturday and Sunday April 18th and 19th.
Fee Free Day: NPS
If you’re coming to Zion and maybe looking to expand your reach slightly, then here’s a place near Zion to see that definitely worth your time. Now don’t get us wrong, there’s enough in Zion to see that it would take you several years to see it all, but every once and awhile you might was a taste of something else, well the Red Mountain Trail next to St George is definitely a must!
If you’re familiar with Snow Canyon State Park then you’ll quickly know why it’s such a fantastic hike. Esentially you hike along the rim of Snow Canyon, the entire way. The hike itself is app 10 miles, and offers views upon views, upon views. You’ll look down into greater Snow Canyon, then at times you’ll be looking westward into the Kayenta valley, and finally you’ll have a stunning view down into Ivins and St George.
The hike begins right by a city called Dammeron Valley, and then ends up in Ivins (there are several ways to access it, but this is the most prevalent). Now we do have to give a warning here, there have been a handful of search and rescue missions on this very trail, and that’s primarily due to people thinking it’s easy and can be done in 5 hours, so they head out without lights or knowing where they’re going. This is backcountry so after awhile the trail disappears and you’re on your own. So if you’re going to hike it, make sure you’re prepared and start in the morning.
After starting out you’ll hike for about an hour or so until you’re greeted with a fork in the road (go right), then after another 30 minutes or so you’ll get a different vantage point of the Snow Canyon Overlook that most don’t see, and it’s wonderful but in reality just the beginning of the views you’ll be greeted with.
Before long you’ll see a place where you can get off the trail and walk along the white rim of Snow Canyon, and here’s where you’ll first see the rock pools of water that dot the landscape along the top. In truth they were some of the most interesting/beautiful things you’ll see along this hike (aside from the stellar views you’ll have the entire time).
As you continue walking southward soon the rocks change from their drastic white to straight red and orange. so the contrast between the two only adds to the scene.
Before long you’ll come to the end and be given that tremendous view down into Ivins that you’ll want to stop and soak in for a few before you begin your descent and complete the trail.
So that’s it, if you’re looking for things to do near Zion then hiking the Red Mountain trail should definitely be on your list.
If you’re wondering if Zion’s worth venturing to during winter then hopefully these images will sway you. When winter comes around Zion in many ways slows down substantially, you aren’t able to access many of the higher elevation areas and hikes of Zion, but in truth Zion doesn’t get a ton of snow usually, which in some ways is regrettable as the snow adds a certain kind of beauty to the canyon.
These two images were taken off of the Kolob Terrace section of Zion. If you’ve ever hiked the Subway then you’ll know right where they were taken from. The road up to Kolob Reservoir is plowed to a point and then after that you’re on your own.
The views here are dramatic and offer a less viewed section of the park. In fact it’s one of the best and most beautiful drives in all of southern Utah. And here’s proof that venturing up there during winter offers wonderful rewards.
But the beauty of winter in Zion is the change that comes over it. The whiteness adds just a completely different perspective and view of this amazing place. We’re used to the sheer canyon walls of red and white, but seeing them snow covered just makes for a completely different view.
In truth you’ll be somewhat limited on which hikes you can do, especially right after a big storm. But places like Emerald Pools and Weeping Rock are easy enough and definitely worth the effort to see them in winter. The water flow is usually fairly substantial as well, so the waterfalls are often flowing strong.
A first aid kit is one of the essential gears for a hiking trip. However, major injuries are not very common in hiking. But, small injuries can always happen when you are hiking, that is why you should pack a first aid kit along with other items while hiking. You can treat the wound immediately so that it won’t trouble you later. The wound won’t get bigger if it gets the right treatment at the right time. Moreover, you can enjoy your trip to Zion National Park when you keep everything ready and you can also help others when you are prepared properly.
Taking a first-aid kit with you while hiking can be very useful, for instance if one of the individuals in your group gets injured, then you can give him or her immediate treatment. In case of any life threatening accidents, you should follow these three guidelines:
Try to stabilize the injury with first-aid. Stop the wound from damaging more. If a member gets hurt then try to stop the bleeding and move him to some other place.
Start Recovery: Make the injured person feel better. Treat the injury and give the first-aid to prevent damage.
It is important to follow the hiking rule of staying calm. In case of any severe issue, take the lead and make others feel secure by being strong and sensible. If any member in your group gets panicked because of injury, then take him or her to a warmer place and help them recover by giving them first-aid treatment. Taking initiative to help people is the bravest thing to do and helping people can also make you feel happy and special.
Sometimes you can’t escape from getting injury especially when you are hiking in a place like Zion Canyon and escaping from weather is sometimes difficult, but when you are prepared well enough you can make things better and at least you can try to prevent additional issues from coming up. Plan it well when you are hiking with a group. Make sure that you carry the necessary things to complete your hiking trip successfully. Wear comfortable and appropriate clothing, drink plenty of water, and take snacks every hour or so.
Learn about preparation for hiking, details on hiking in hot weather, hiking at different altitudes and hiking in cold weather.
Before you go for an adventurous hike in a new area of Zion National Park, you should know about poisonous insects, snakes, plants, dangerous animals, and other reptiles that inhabit this area.
First-aid kits are available in any medical store, where you can get from bigger ones to small travel first-aid kit. Get a travel kit for your personal safety when you are going for a hike with a group. However, in a group one person must carry the bigger first-aid kit so that it can be useful for everyone in the group. Learn a few things about first-aid kits so that you can use it properly when you need it for treatment.
Check your first-aid kit before going for a hiking trip to make sure that you have everything that you required for emergency. Check the date and replace the expired medications and replace the items that are required. Keep the first-aid kit where you can take it easily when required.
Photo Credit: Bill Morrow
When hiking anywhere, especially in an arid place like Zion National Park, the importance of fluids or liquids in the body should not be underestimated. Our body is like a vehicle that needs fluids in order to function efficiently. The state of losing fluids is known as dehydration and the only way to replenish the loss is through hydration.
Dehydration starts when there is a feeling of excessive thirst. If this condition persists, it will continue to manifest signs that water percentage in your body is getting low. Decrease in energy and dry mouth are the early signs which can quickly result in headaches, nausea and cramps if not quickly attended to.
A glass of water is a the best treatment to this unpleasant condition. The following tips are recommended by experts to ensure that your body is well hydrated:
When Can Over-hydration Occur?
Too much of anything can bring a negative result. Hyponatremia is the opposite of dehydration or over-hydration. This is a rare case which mostly strikes the athlete’s endurance like triathletes and marathon runners. This condition is also described when the levels of sodium in the blood gets diluted that impairs the function of cells. Severe condition may result to coma or even death.
Best Weapon Against this Dilution
Follow the below tips to keep your body always well hydrated.
Every year many hikers get lost in woods or on trails, it usually only happens when the individual aren’t going with other hikers, but not always. Zion National park offers some of the most intense scenery you’ll find anywhere, but you have to hike to it to see it. So here are some hints on what to do if you find yourself lost while hiking in Zion Canyon.
The most important step to remember is, inform your friends or someone about your trip, let them know where you are going and when you are coming back. Also let them know when and what time you will contact them, so that if you are not back in the specified time your family or the park ranger can send a search troop for you.
1. The first and foremost step is following the trial along with other hikers. Don’t wander, in case you are lost, remember to carry map and compass along with you. Before you go for a hike, look at the map and know the trail, streams, nearby roads, and other areas. Also give your trip plan to your family and friends. Look around while hiking to observe the topography, in case you are lost they could serve as a good navigation points.
2. A compass and map helps you find the familiar landmarks. Don’t forget to keep them in your backpack before leaving for the hiking. Stay calm, and look at the map with calm mind, you may find the way.
3. In case you are lost in Zion National Park, make sure that you leave a trail mark behind, so that when search team come to rescue you they can see the ribbons on the tree and they can easily rescue you quickly.
4. Remember the magical letters S.T.O.P., when you lost in woods, don’t get panic, remember these letters, ‘S’ is for stay calm, stay cool and contemplate on map and other surroundings. ‘T’ is for Think, think calmly and think how to get out of this mess and reach home safely. ‘O’ is for Observe, look around your surroundings. And finally ‘P’ is for Plan, eat and take rest before you try to find the way out, plan on how to get out and how to leave hints to the rescuers.
Don’t let fear conquer you, don’t get panicked and restless. Zion National Park is an incredible place to go hiking and to stay, so sit down and look at the beautiful surroundings, just relax. If you are calm and composed, then you can easily find your way to reach your group. Protect yourself and carry lots of water and food before going hiking, that way you don’t need worry about your food. All of these can happen only when you do not follow your group. So be alert and attentive while hiking.
Photo Credit: John Fowler
Have you hiked the Canyon Overlook trail in Zion? If your answers no then watch this video and make a goal to come see it for yourself. When looking for things in Zion to see, this would be pretty high on our list of amazing hikes and amazing views.
If you’re coming to southern Utah and are looking for reasons to stick around, then the Canyon Overlook trail must be on your list. And there’s no better place to go afterwards than some of the finest lodging in Springdale at the Bumbleberry Inn. Hiking and exploring in this beautiful canyon offers some amazing memories that you won’t soon forget, coupling those with returning back to a clean and beautiful room to stay in only adds to the experience.
Come soon. Come often.
While there may be some good reasons why you want to solo hike in Zion, there are also some things which can make the adventure not so great, or some things which could get you into trouble.
Especially in a place like southern Utah and specifically Zion National Park. Below are few tips that you may find useful when you decide to go for a hike alone.
What are the essentials that you need to bring if you are solo hiking?
1. First Aid Kit
In case of accidents like cuts and burns among others, you need to have a first aid kit to treat your injury. Your first aid could include alcohol, medicines, bandages, pain killers and antibiotics among many others.
2. Food and water requirements
Make sure to bring food and water suitable for your needs, considering the number of days that the hike takes to complete. Make sure that you bring a little more than enough than what you actually need for the number of days that you plan to hike.
3. Bring some clothes and extra pair of slippers
You will have to bring some clothes and slippers so you could change your clothes when the need arises.
4. Mobile Phone (one that is fully charged)
This is important so you could inform your family in case something happens to you, somehow they will know where to find you. Or you may also make use of a tracking device where you can inform your family where you are and allow you to send messages in case you are in trouble.
5. Always waterproof your belongings
Try putting your belongings in a water proof container to prevent from getting wet.
If you’re inexperienced and it’s your first time solo hiking, then be careful. Make certain you familiarize yourself with the fundamentals of hiking before you actually go on hiking on your own. Having someone to talk to during the hike is nice; you can discuss any matter that will make the hike more fun.
When you’ve decided it’s time to come see for yourself what everyone’s been talking about, this is what will greet you.
We find it amusing sometimes to see people pulled off to the side of the road taking road shots of Zion in the distance, after seeing this photo we’ll never be amused again. As this image illustrates the beautiful drive that awaits people when they are nearing Zion National Parks entrance. And this photographer captured it in a way we never could.
We found this photo quite stunning of a waterfall in Zion National Park. The variety with which what this canyon offers people is just amazing. One second you’ll be standing on top of the world at Angels Landing, and the next you’ll be standing next to a cascading waterfall dropping from hundreds of feet above you.
Zion is just a wonderful place to come, stay, and see. This photo stands as proof of that.