Tips For Staying in Zion

Check out our posts with tips for staying in Zion!

The number one reason visitors flock to Zion National Park each year is for the incredible hiking opportunities. With the park covering a vast 150,000 acres of land, there is plenty to explore. When it comes to different hikes within the park, Zion presents nearly endless possibilities. Hikers can enjoy strenuous hikes that take days to complete or just take a light stroll through paved walkways.

Since there are many choices of easy, moderate, or strenuous hikes, visitors of all experience and fitness levels will enjoy the trails of Zion. Even those who are not avid or experienced hikers will be able to fill many days with entertaining hiking excursions. With three difficulty levels to choose from and something different to enjoy on each trail, every hike through Zion will be an unforgettable adventure.

Easy

 Just because a hike is easy doesn’t mean it’s boring. The easy hikes throughout Zion National Park have many amazing views of the landscape. Most easy hikes take less than two hours to complete and will be on smooth trails. Hikers will not encounter difficult obstacles to overcome during these hikes, either. Though the hikes are short and leisurely, they are packed with experiences that will create unforgettable memories.

Canyon Overlook Trail

This short, easy hike has an unbelievable scenic view without having to hike for miles or drudge up steep ascents. At about a mile long, this hike takes less than an hour to complete, which means many hikers will spend more time marveling at the view than they spend hiking.

To get to Canyon Overlook Trail, visitors should go to the east end of Zion National Park. They will park their vehicles just before the Zion-Mt. Carmel tunnel. From here, it is a short hike from the road that leads into a large, breathtaking cave. When hikers emerge from the cave, they will be treated to an amazing view of the park. This is the perfect hike for every visitor who wants to see the best of Zion and take some Instagram-worthy photos.

Lower Emerald Pools Trail

Round trip this hike is about 1 mile and takes about one hour. The paved trail leads you to 3 stunning waterfalls and a lower pool that makes it all worth it. The access for this trail is extremely convenient as well. You enter through the opposite side of the lane from the Zion Lodge parking lot. Unfortunately, this trail is closed during winter months, but for those visiting during the other parts of the year, be sure to add this to your Zion Hike Bucket List.

Pa’rus Trail

This trail takes about one and a half hours to complete and is approximately 3.5 miles. The hike is ideal for beginners. The paved trail takes you from the Virgin River near the south campground to the Zion-Canyon junction. The access for this trail is conveniently located near the south campground at Zion.

Beautiful iconic scene of The watchman at sunset, Zion National Park, Utah.

Riverside Walk

This hike is about as leisurely as a stroll through Zion can get. An even walking surface and shaded environment make this trail perfect for families. There are many incredible sights to see, including surroundings that are coved with hanging gardens of wildflowers especially during summer and spring, and a refreshing surprise at the end of the trail.
Riverside Walk takes hikers from the Temple of Sinawava to the Virgin River. This two-mile-long hike is known as the Gateway to the Narrows because the end of this trail is the beginning of the popular Narrows trail. When the entrance of the Narrows is reached, hikers can wade and splash through a refreshing pool of water before they head back. This short hike, which takes most hikers around two hours to complete, is an incredible way to experience the beauty of Zion without embarking on a long, strenuous journey.

Watchman Trail 

Among the many beautiful rock formations throughout Zion National Park is the Watchman. This formation shoots from the ground, towering above the vast red rock landscape. The Watchman Trail doesn’t climb to the staggering heights of the Watchman, but it does give a fantastic view of the formation from ground level.

The Watchman Trail is a three-mile-long hike that is a hidden gem within Zion. It is usually not crowded, so hikers can enjoy some peace and quiet on this hike. This hike takes about three hours to complete and will lead hikers along a red rock trail which is rough in some portions but can be completed by even the most inexperienced hikers. Since this trail is not shaded, it is best done in the morning or evening to avoid the scorching midday sun. Hikers and their families will love the connection they will feel with Zion during this light hike.

Weeping Rock Trail

Round trip to weeping rock trail is about 0.8km/0.5mi and to reach the trail it takes about half hour. The trail is about 98 feet, easy hike, and minor drop-offs. Smooth trail ends at rock-alcove with drenched springs. The walls are decorated with wildflower hanging gardens during summer and spring time. Trailside exhibits are possibly not available and access to weeping rock trail is through weeping rock parking lot.

Weeping Rock Trail--Under the Weeping Ledge
Photo Credit: justmecpb on flickr

Moderate 

Trails that are deemed moderate are usually difficult enough to challenge hikers of all experience levels in terms of distance and technical challenges. However, they are not so difficult that a physically fit novice wouldn’t be able to complete them. Moderate hikes can take anywhere from a few hours to a full day. They can be challenging both physically and mentally, but these challenges are well worth it. After completing one of these moderately difficult hikes, hikers will feel an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.

Zion Narrows 

There are two ways to hike the Narrows, but the least strenuous way to hike it is from the bottom up. This route doesn’t require technical skills like climbing and rappelling, but it still gives an incredible view of the slot canyon. Steep canyon walls, beautiful rock formations, and a floor of shallow water from the Virgin River will engulf hikers in the Zion landscape.
The entrance of the Narrows, at the end of Riverside Walk, ushers hikers into a completely different world. The average length of this hike is anywhere from three to eight miles and takes anywhere between two to six hours to complete. This narrow slot canyon is an out and back trail, which means hikers can turn around whenever they please. However, making it to the Wall Street portion of the Narrows should be the goal, as this portion of the canyon, with its high, smooth walls, is an unforgettable experience. Hiking any portion of Zion Narrows will be the highlight of a trip to Zion.
Zion NarrowsPhoto Credit: zionify by ramesh iyanswamy on 500px.com

Observation Point

There is no better view of Zion National Park than the one found at Observation Point. For hikers that can handle it, this moderately strenuous hike is a must-see while in Zion. Not only are the views incredible, but the physical challenges along the way will bring out a sense of pride and accomplishment in all who complete it.
The Observation Point Trail begins at the Weeping Rock Trailhead and leads up to the area of Observation Point. The trail is eight miles long and will take the average hiker around four to six hours to complete. The climb is steep and leads hikers up to elevations of over 2,100 feet. The trail is hard paved rock, manmade from the canyon walls, so the rocky terrain isn’t an issue in most areas. The strenuous part of this climb is the steep elevation and the unrelenting sun. However, once the trail is completed, the view at the top is one of a kind.

Middle Emerald Pools Trail

The Middle Emerald Pools trail takes you to both the middle and lower pools. Round trip, the trail covers about 2 miles and takes approximately 2 hours to complete. As with the Lower Emerald Pools Trail, the Middle Emerald Pools Trail is closed during the winter.

Views to Zion National Park from Angels Landing hike

Angels Landing 

Perhaps the most well-known trail in Zion National Park, Angels Landing is full of incredible views, staggering heights, and daring challenges. The high elevations and narrow trails on this path will test the mental and physical fortitude of all who attempt it.
Angels Landing begins at the Grotto trailhead and leads hikers along a precarious red rock ridge. This five-mile-long trail, which takes around two to four hours to complete, features switchbacks, rocky terrain, and breathtaking heights. This trail gets so high and so precarious that it is not recommended for hikers who are uneasy with heights. Once hikers have reached the end of the hike they will have an unbelievable view of Zion. Those who dare embark on this journey will find that is was well worth the trip.

Difficult

Difficult hikes are certainly not for inexperienced hikers. These hikes are long, grueling, and can take many days to complete. They often involve camping in the wilderness, using technical skills like rappelling and climbing, and having advanced knowledge of the landscape. The terrain of difficult hikes is incredibly unpredictable, ranging from steep climbs to deep pools of water and everything in between. Embarking on a difficult hike through Zion will be one of the most difficult and rewarding experiences of a hiker’s life.

Kolob Arch

 This gorgeous trail along the red rock landscape leads to a massive arch formation with a beautiful scenic backdrop. Seeing Kolob Arch, which is the second largest arch in the world, is something that experienced, physically fit hikers can do in Zion National Park. It is one of the most beautiful formations in the park and provides endless photo opportunities.
This hike will take an entire day but will not require camping overnight. The 14-mile-long trail takes most hikers a full twelve-hour day, hiking from dawn to dusk. The trail is long, exposed to the harsh sun in many places, and has moderately rocky terrain. Whether hikers take Kolob Canyons Road at Lee Pass or Hop Valley Trailhead to get to Kolob Arch, it will be a long journey with a beautiful, scenic payoff.

The Barracks 

Avid hikers who are looking to get away from the crowds on more popular trails will love hiking The Barracks. This section of Zion is on the East Fork of the Virgin River. It gives visitors all the amazing views they would see on the North Fork, but none of the crowding.
This 20-mile-long journey is not for the faint of heart. This hike takes most people two or three days to complete. Parts of this hike are along Parunaweap Canyon where the layers of red rock on the canyon walls surround hikers. Other portions are in the heat of the sun on the rocky landscape. Since this hike requires camping, hikers will need to obtain the proper camping permits and make sure they adhere to park rules.

Zion National Park, Utah, USA

West Rim Trail

 The West Rim Trail packs all the scenic beauty of Zion into one journey. Along the trail, hikers will see gorgeous trees and other plant life, small streams, wildlife, and, of course, stunning red rock. This strenuous hike is not for inexperienced hikers, but those able to make the journey will be glad they did.
This trail begins at Lava Rock and winds its way through the most beautiful areas of the park. If hikers desire, they can even take a side trail to hike Angels Landing. When hiked straight through without detouring to other trails, West Rim Trail is about 18 miles long and takes two days. The amazing sights on this trail should put it on every experienced hiker’s Zion bucket list.

Pick a Trail and Enjoy the Hike 

Hikes through Zion give visitors the chance to see many incredible natural sights, test their physical and mental strength, and feel a sense of pride and accomplishment after hiking any of the above trails. Around every turn, there is something new and exciting to experience while on a hike in Zion National Park. All visitors have to do is pick their trail and let their journey begin.

More people seem concerned with selecting the best hiking footwear than they are about choosing the best water treatment system. When selecting water treatment, there are several factors to be considered before making your final purchase. You need to take into account the different sizes, treatment time and weight, and some of the more difficult categories, such as longevity of the treatment system, filter medium, and what kind of organism the treatment is effective at removing.

Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter

Photo Credit: ITS Tactical on flickr

Why Treat Water?

In olden days, many hikers used to drink water directly from an old creek when they happened to pass by one. Back then, the fresh mountain water was clear, crisp, cold, and refreshing. But now it is totally different scenario. We are having to be more concerned about pollution and water contamination than ever before.

In recent research, it is proved that a hinterlands source at elevation, the water is possibly still cleaner than what the researchers actually thought before. One way that you can try to determine if water is contaminated is by looking at the source of the water, typically the highest elevation point. If you cannot fid any packs of animals, grazing cattle, or any other obvious pollutants, then you could guess that the water is not severely contaminated. However, that takes a lot of effort to find that out and still leaves room for mistake.

How Does It Work?

When you are filtering water, it goes through a filter area that catches particles and permits the water to go through. The size of the pore in the filter element will decide what is removed from the water. For example, if you pour water on a piece of tent-screen, the larger pores of the tent-screen element will only catch large impurities, such as sand and sticks, and allow smaller particles to pass through. If you move to a filter that has medium pores, such as a neckerchief, it catches smaller particles than the tent-screen, such as tiny bugs and more dirt, but still allows tiny particles to pass through. And last, if you pour water through a coffee filter that has very small pores, it will catch even more dirt and other tiny particles than the other two filters.

These processes described only catch visual impurities. But, the actual dangerous impurities such as bacteria, cysts, and viruses are not visible to a naked eye. To remove these impurities, you need commercial water purifiers or filters.

What Are Some Options?

Filter Treatment:

There are two main types of water treatment systems readily available for hikers. The first type is called a Pump Filter. In a pump filter purifier, one end, or the hosepipe, is placed in the water container and another end into the water supply. The water is pumped through the filter element and into your water container. This process takes quite a lot of time and effort, but is a very famous filtering process.

The second type of  water treatment system is a Gravity Water Filter. In this process, the water is poured in an impure container and placed it at a high elevation. The container contains an outlet pipe through which the water comes down through the filter element before being deposited into the clean water container. This process also takes quite amount of time, as the earth’s gravity is doing the job and it also takes its own sweet time to purify the water.

UV Light Treatment:

Another comparatively new method of water treatment is by using UV Light. Small equipment attacks the organisms that are in the water using UV light and it destroys their reproductive system. This process is fast and easy to use because it is very light weight. While this is also a very affordable option, you do need batteries for the device. This means that you will need to pack extras with you, just in case.

Chemical Treatment:

This method is considerably the easiest and most light-weight way to purify water. In this process, a few drops of chemicals are added into the water that you have collected. These chemicals kill the bacteria and other impurities in the water. Although it is the easiest method, it takes time for the chemicals to do their job and is also very expensive. Another thing to consider is that without a filtration system, it leaves all the dead organisms in the water.

 

Human beings are generally very daring and always seeking for adventure. If you are the adventure chasing type, then you must consider visiting Zion National Park to try out the fun and adventure filled package offered in an around the park. Along with the famous hikes that most come to Zion to experience, some of the most interesting adventures in the area include biking, ATV riding, paintball, horseback riding, wall climbing and rappelling, and trampoline bungee jumping.

Zion National ParkPhoto credit: Jason Lewandowski on flickr

ATV Riding

All Terrain Vehicles, or more commonly knowns ATVs, are very compact vehicles used to traverse the dense landscape around the park. However, do not let their toy-like nature deceive you. These are custom built, full throttle vehicles designed to comfortably blast through the rocky and hilly terrains of the park, and pass through intense stream beds. You will be intrigued by the power and speed of these machines, as you blast your way through the course. There is even more fun and glory when you decide to make a splash and get dirty by speeding through the mud as you go through your tour. However, ATV tours are limited to visitors with a valid drivers license or learners permit, and must be over the age of 16. If you have members of your group that are under the age of 16, there are still options for them to join in on the fun. Smaller ATV’s or Golf carts may be provided for those under 16.

You have to realize that ATV riding can be very dangerous and you are responsible for your actions. You could be asked to discontinue any further participation in the tour, if you are found responsible for any act that may cause possible damage or harm to yourself or others.

Paintball

Paintball is another very exciting activity you do not want to miss while at Zion. There are many courses with a lot of space dedicated just for the game of paintball. Whether you have a small group or a larger group, they have the space to accommodate almost any group! This is an exciting arena for paintball, because there are many obstacles incorporated into the natural landscaping. These are perfect locations where you can easily take cover or camouflage without easily being noticed, as you take revenge on opponents and cover them up in paint. The paintball ground has been further customized to create opportunities for you to sneak around your opponents and knock them out. In fact, the experience can be measured to that of a US Marshal in combat, but less dangerous.

Shooting Range

While at Zion National Park, you could test your guts by going visiting a shotgun range. The shooting range is safely located at a considerable distance away from human or animal settlement, to ensure that the only casualties are the targeted clay pigeons or cans. Although hunting is prohibited in or around the park, you can grab a taste of the hunting experience in this natural environment by shooting cans or clay pigeons that are being thrown across the valley with a provided 20 gauge shotgun. You also have the option of shooting stationary targets that have been placed against the hillside. It is possible to bring your own gun for this exercise, but strict rules apply in such situations.

Horseback Riding

If you have a passion for riding on horseback, or maybe you are just eager to learn the art of horseback riding, then you should consider signing up for a horseback riding tour. Zion Ponderosa Ranch Resort, working in collaboration with East Zion Adventures, is just one of the many places where you can actually get a one on one horseback riding training with some of the most experienced wranglers you could possibly imagine. Just an hour in the training session could immediately eliminate all your fears about horses, and transform you into an almost perfect horse rider. You would be teamed up with the most suitable young, strong, and well trained horses that would gracefully carry you as you embark on the ride of your life.

Along with the natural beauty and wonder of the park itself, these thrilling adventures only add to the pull that Zion National Park has on outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers around the world. What will you do on your next adventure to Zion?

Nature can be one of the most beneficial things for a persons mental health. With cities growing and becoming more industrialized, it can be more and more difficult to reconnect with nature and get some much needed fresh air. Here are some of the benefits a person can get from just getting outdoor once in a while.

Physical Health

Exercise

Obviously exercise is one of the main benefits you will get from getting outside and enjoying nature. Even a short light walk has plenty of benefits, no one is saying you need to go hike Angels Landing to reap the physical benefits of getting outdoors.

Reduced Inflammation

There has been studies that show that those who get outside more often tend to have lower risk for inflammatory diseases such as IBS. Inflammation isn’t always a bad thing, our body does it to protect us, but when it goes into over drive it can cause some pretty severe issues.

Walking & Relax
Photo Credit: Giorgio Martini on flickr

Better Eyesight

Most studies for this have been done with children mainly, but it showed us that outdoor activities can have a protective benefit for their vision. Another study shows that for those who work on computers all day, outdoor activity where they are focusing on things that aren’t two feet in front of their face can prevent and in some cases reverse the side effects of CVS (Computer Vision Syndrome).

Mental Health

Stress Relief

Several studies show that a two night stay in the forrest can reduce cortisol levels immensely. Cortisol is the hormone that is main-linked to stress. Another study shows that even having an office view of nature can reduce stress levels.

Improved Concentration

There have been several studies showing that a short time spent in nature can boost someones concentration levels pretty high. Some researches have found that even children with ADHD have shown higher levels of concentration after just a 20 minute nature walk.

All Around Better Mental Health

Depression, anxiety and stress can all be easily reduced by getting outdoors more and enjoying some fresh air!

Zion National Park is becoming more and more popular each year. Use these few tips and strategies to get the absolute best out of your trip to Zion.

Best Times To Visit

It really is best to plan your visit to Zion during the week, not on weekends (for obvious reasons, like busy!). Also try to avoid visiting during holidays or holiday weekends as that is when the park will be the most packed. Early spring and late autumn are the absolute best times of the year to visit, temperatures are perfect and there won’t be nearly as many crowds.

Day Times

Avoid coming during the middle of the day when temperatures are high as well as crowds. Exploring during early mornings and afternoons when the crowds have yet to come out or are dispersing.

Enjoy All Trails

Don’y shy away from the shorter and more popular trails! Though short these trails still offer plenty of beauty! For the more strenuous trails such as Angels Landing and The Narrows, you need to make sure that you are prepared and don’t just head into it without the proper gear.

IMG_5096 Shuttle Bus at Visitor Center, Zion National Park
Photo Credit: I-Ting Chiang on flickr

Shuttles

The visitors center and The Temple Of Sinawava are the most popular and crowded stops in Zion Canyon. If you’re looking to get some privacy and want to just relax, try getting off at some of the less popular stops and enjoying the beauty around you.

Business trips require little planning as it requires essential things to be packed beforehand unlike your personal travel where you can squeeze things in your bag at the last minute. Business travel involves more reflection and more consideration, it all depends on how you look and perform as elegant as possible and at the same time keeping our luggage light for the trip. Here you can find a few tips that can help you pack your luggage lightly for your next business trip.

Businessman Waiting In An Airport
Photo Credit: Krunja Photography on flickr

Fewer clothes

It is best thing to pack fewer clothes, which means if you need to wear a coat for the meeting, it is advisable to wear the coat to the airport, and you can place the coat at the special storage room in your plane, that way you can make more room for other cloths in your bag. The dapper suit and elegant ties are perfect to get a professional look.

Size matters

The essential things like your toiletries will be available in small packets get those small packets for the trip. Though you get all the stuff in your hotel room as complementary but it is advisable to get your own stuff. So take required items with you when you go for a business trip.

Get a clutch bag

Get the stylish clutch bag for a convenient trip, where you can put all your supplies, toiletries, etc. You don’t need to stuff everything in your suitcase pockets, or put them in a plastic bag, you can do it that way too, buy why when you can go in a stylish way. Small clutch bags are also suitable for long flight journeys; you can just pull it out and take it to the toilet. You can make yourself fresh before landing in the destination.

Reuse

You can pack clothes for business trip that you can use more than once in your trip. You can use the soft woolen slacks a couple of time. The suggestible color for slacks is black; nobody can notice that you wore the slacks before. For evening engagements, just remove your coat and present yourself with sophistication. Now how you present yourself and how well you are groomed always makes the best impression on others, so present yourself well and apply a good cologne.

Here is a list of the bare necessities of clothing that you can survive with on a 3 day business trip.

  •  One Suit Coat.
  • One pair of slacks.
  • 3 pairs of underwear.
  • 3 pairs of socks.
  • One long sleeved polo.
  • One short sleeved polo.
  • One sport short.
  • A pair of comfortable shoes (leather).
  • Two ties.
  • Small clutch bag with essential stuff.
  • Three handkerchiefs.
  • One pair of pajamas.

These are the essential things that are required for your 3 day business trip. This kind of planning helps you carry less language and more comfort. Remember the way you present yourself shows you professionalism, so pack things that are required and have a successful business trip.

Staying in a hotel with little ones can be quite stressful and at times it seems nearly unbearable. Trying to keep them entertained, safe and just plain happy in a hotel is pretty hard at times. So we have compiled a list of tips to make your next stay in a hotel with children a little more bearable.

ks128932
Photo Credit: homestarkaren on flickr

Kid Proofing

This is especially helpful if you have toddlers and babies. Baby proof or kid proof the room the moment you arrive. Pack a few electrical outlet covers, table corner covers, and lots of disinfectant. Inspect the room for anything dangerous that your child could injure themselves on and move it out of reach. Doing a complete once over of a hotel room could help in keeping the kids safe.

Set Up

Get everything set up for your stay. This means having diapers out and available so you’re not digging through your luggage trying to find one after an accident. Get a feeding station and play area set up. Get the bathroom all set up as well. Hotels are like mini homes away from home, so make yourself and your kids as comfortable as possible before you head out to explore. This will make your life a lot easier when it comes to getting everyone dressed and ready, fed, bathed, etc.

Book A Suite

With kids it can be very frustrating, cramped and just plain uncomfortable to be stuck in a regular sized hotel room. Kids have a lot of energy and are going to be moving around and not stuck in one place, so the more space the better! Also, keeping the stay as close to a home feeling as possible will make a world of difference.

Stay Organized And Clean

Staying in a little room can be very chaotic especially with the whole family. Staying organized and cleaning up (making beds, putting dirty clothes back in suitcases, etc) will help maintain the sanity in the room.

Always Latch

Kids love to explore and get out, and hotel rooms don’t allow you to lock yourselves in. Kids can be sneaky and escape fairly easy, so be sure to use the latch to keep them locked in as best as you can.

Hopefully these tips will help you on your next trip with your kiddos!