What to do if You Get Lost Hiking in Zion Canyon

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.

Misty morning

How to prepare yourself when you are lost while hiking Zion Canyon:

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

Hiking the Canyon Overlook Trail – Video

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.

Reasons to Stay and Find Lodging in Springdale

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.

Tips For Solo Hiking in Zion

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.

solo hiking in Zion

  1. Inform your family of your decision to solo hike. Let them know when and where you will be heading to. Leave your travel itinerary to any responsible adult in your home; someone who should know how to analyze when you might need help, and that search and rescue operation should be sent to your way. You can anticipate that scenario, and it is best that you create a trail wherever to wherever you’re going so they know.
  2. If you choose to hike in remote areas, make known of your intention to solo hike by registering a permit. Check out for some advisory if there is any.
  3. Be affable and civilized when you come across other people. Do not fake your being friendly as people can easily sense whether you are telling the truth or not.
  4. If you think something is off and might go wrong, don’t hesitate to inform the tourism office and the park rangers and to get assistance.

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.

Solo Hiking in Zion and Elsewhere Conclusion

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.

Approaching Zion

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.

Waterfall in Zion

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.

Tips for Packing When Staying in Zion Canyon

When I was a kid, I would get so excited about going out of town that I would pack my bag weeks in advance. As I grow up, weeks dwindled into days, with more thought being put into what I should and shouldn’t bring. This is especially true when coming to visit Zion National Park and Bumbleberry Inn.

Of course, that never really stopped me from over-packing. All the what-if question runs through my head, prompting me to bring one more extra shirt, and extra pair of jeans and maybe a couple more underwear. My toiletry bag takes up as much space as my pair of trainers. And don’t get me started on my little plastic containers.

Travel Kit
Photo Credit: Richard Moross

It amuses me when they show people on TV just throwing their closet into their luggage and sitting on it, in a vain attempt to zip it close. Though I find it silly and impractical to just throw your clothes into your luggage, deep down I realize it hits a nerve. They’re over-packing, and so do I. What makes it worse in over-packing is that I sometimes don’t have enough room for the things I should be taking along, and end up with things I never get to use.

And so I’ll share with you some tips that I found useful when packing for a trip:

Roll, not fold. This advice is pretty much a staple in every article about packing. It really is effective in decreasing creases in your clothes. Also, it leaves you with more space for all your clothes (a double-edged sword, actually, since more space tempts you to fill in said space).

Don’t pack new things. Whether it’s a year-long trip or a weekend getaway (or an overnight field trip), there’s always an urge to buy new things that we believe would make this trip better. Like a new pair of hiking shoes for when you go trekking, a pair of goggles for swimming, or those top of the line travel pants the every travel article said you absolutely must have. There’s nothing wrong with buying those things, but if you plan on taking those with you, make sure to break them in before putting it inside your luggage. There’s nothing worse than wearing uncomfortable clothes and shoes while traveling.

Make a packing list. Whenever you go shopping, it’s essential to make a shopping list so you’d know what to buy, and not end up buying the same things that are already in your pantry and neglecting to buy what you really need. It’s the same with packing. You need to come up with a list of the things you need to bring. Once you’ve drawn up your packing list, check each item if you really need to bring it along. Last year, before I went on my Zion National Park trip, I came up with my own packing list. I used this to check and double check the contents of my backpack before I left. When I got back, I reviewed each item, and made a note on how often I used it, if I used it at all. It’s enlightening to see how much stuff I could’ve done without. The great thing about making your own packing list is that it is tailored to your needs and preferences. In evaluating each item after a trip, you get ideas on how to make your list better.

Put your “must haves” in your carry-on. Except if it’s liquid and more than 100ml. We’ve all heard of horror stories of missing luggage. I’ve never had the misfortune to experience that but I always try to prepare myself for the worst. I make sure my travel insurance covers lost luggage. Also, I make sure I only put the stuff I wouldn’t mind losing in my check-in luggage. Of course I don’t want to lose anything, but taking a proactive step in avoiding a major loss is necessary.

Amazing Timelapse Video of Zion Canyon

We found this timelapse video of Zion and just fell in love. They are able to capture images of Zion in an amazing way and the music added only adds to it. Take a look at it and we’re certain you’ll feel the same way about it.

Surprisingly getting videos of Zion in this caliber is much harder than it looks. That’s why you don’t see many videos of Zion like this, primarily because they are so time consuming. This one is just well done definitely worth a watch.

A Great Image of the Narrows

This is a such a beautiful image of The Narrows in Zion that we just had to share! The contrast from the beautiful canyon walls, to the green trees along the bank, to the water is just incredible. And even the hiker in the pictures adds a depth to the photo, giving you a real idea of what it would be like to go hiking there.

The Narrows offers a great opportunity to see not only the beauty that Zion has to offer, but the adventure as well. Because you’ve got to walk through water that can go up to your neck at times. Which if you’re prepared for it makes for a great time as you hike.

Rappelling Pine Creek

Often the hikes of Zion get all the attention, primarily due to their ease of access, you don’t need any real special skills or equipment to go hiking. But there are some amazing canyons in Zion that are accessed only by rappelling, and one of our favorite is Pine Creek.

In comparison this is a fairly easy canyon, but it offers some great rappels down some amazing canyons. It does have some swimming parts though (usually) so be prepared to get wet. Pine Creek is a fantastic canyon to do in Zion, so if you get the chance to do it, make certain you take it.

How to Protect Yourself from a Storm in Zion

There is nothing better than going for a camping or hiking outside with a blue sky and the sun shining very brightly at you, especially in a place like Zion National Park. However, in some instances, the weather may sometimes be unpleasant and force us to change our schedule or hiking location. Or worse, the weather may change into a bad situation while you are already on the trail or in the camp site. In this article, we will teach you some tips that you can use in order to be safe while being troubled by a storm on your hiking or camping trip, and more importantly, we will teach you how to determine whether a storm will be coming on your way. Hopefully if you’re ever hiking in Zion and encounter some of these things you’ll be better equipped as to know what to do.


Photo Credit: Michael Carlson

How to Predict a storm in Zion and Elsewhere:

If you are a camper or engaged in any outdoor activity, you should take time to consider the weather that you may encounter. Before the day of your planned camping, make sure that you observe the sky. See if the sky is darkening or if there are flashes of lights or if the wind is unusually strong. Also, listen for any rumbles in the sky. If you can hear rumbles in the sky, that only means that you are close enough to the storm and that there is a chance that you can be struck by lightning. In that case, quickly go to a safe place where you will be protected.

There is actually a simple criterion on how you can estimate the distance of the lightning: a light travels at a speed of 300,000 km/s while the sound travels at 330 meters per second. In short, to measure the distance, count the seconds of intervals between the flash and the thunder and multiply it by 330. For example, there is a three (3) second interval between the lightning and the thunder then, 3 sec x 330 meters/sec = 990 meters.

If you are determined to reach the top of the mountain or to finish a route then you should take note of the following:

  •  Be aware of the weather forecast in your place and in your destination especially in the mountains and forests where storms can be very dangerous.
  • Sometimes people can, without them being aware of it, sense danger through their bodies. Sometimes we feel a strange tingling under our skin, or sometimes our hair stands when we get in contact with metal objects which end up in a buzz and give us a little shock. This happens because we are moving in an area with a high static energy brought by the storm. In this situation we are conductive. This is why sometimes when two campers are close to each other and they touch each other they get a shock.

What to do During a Zion Canyon Storm:

  • Keep your cool and analyze your situation. Move rationally.
  • Stay away from high places and go to low areas which are not prone to flooding.
  • Never run during the storm especially when your clothes are wet. This is very dangerous as you can attract lightning.
  • Gather all materials made of metal (ice axes, trekking pole, frame backpacks, rods, sticks, pans, grills, fishing rods, etc.) and place them 30 meters away from you. Allow them to attract the lightning.
  • Never hide under a tree or a rock which is standing alone. A tree which stands alone with no other trees nearby can easily attract a lightning. However, a forest or any group of trees can be used as a shelter during a storm.
  • Keep a distance from metallic objects and other electrical facilities like fences, barbed wires, pipes, telephone wire, railroad, bicycle and other machineries. Being close with these objects is dangerous even when not into direct contact because these can have shock waves created by thunder heats in the air which can be a cause of lung diseases.
  • Keep away from an open and plain area. Standing alone in the middle of an open field can make you a lightning rod because you are probably the tallest object in that area.
  • Stay away from wetlands or puddles. Quickly move to another place if you found yourself near a river, a lake or the sea as the water in these areas can quickly rise.
  • Don’t hide in small shelters such as barns, shacks, and tents. They are not safe.
  • Turn off cellphones, tablets or other electronic gadgets as electromagnetic radiation may attract lightning.
  • The best place to hide under a storm is inside a car. However, inside, you must turn off your engine and lower your radio antenna. You should also close the windows. Even if your car gets struck by a lightning, you will still be perfectly safe inside.
  • Be a small target by being in a squatting position. Your hands should be around your knees and your head between it. Try to be as small a target as possible.
  • Do not walk barefoot.