Rangers present a variety of free programs and activities. Evening programs, which last about 45 minutes, take place most evenings from April through September at the Watchman Campground Amphitheater and Zion Lodge Auditorium. They usually include a slide show, and cover topics such as the animals or plants of the park, geology, the night sky, mankind’s role in the park, or some unique aspect of Zion, like slot canyons. Rangers also give short talks on similar subjects during the day at various locations, including the Zion Lodge auditorium and the Zion Human History Museum. Ranger-guided hikes and walks, which may require reservations, might take you to little-visited areas of the park, on a trek to see wildflowers, or on a night hike under a full moon. These range from easy to very difficult. Rangers also lead shuttle tours during summer. The 2-hour “Ride with a Ranger” trip offers an opportunity to see the scenic drive and learn about Zion Canyon from a park ranger’s perspective. Activity schedules are posted on boards at the visitor centers, campgrounds, and other locations.
Children up to 12 years old can join the Junior Rangers/Explorers and participate in a variety of hands-on activities, earning certificates, pins, and patches. Morning and afternoon sessions, each lasting 1[bf]1/2 to 2[bf]1/2 hours, take place daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day, with children meeting at the Zion Nature Center, near the entrance to South Campground.
The Zion Canyon Field Institute, operated by the nonprofit Zion Natural History Association, Zion National Park, Springdale (800/635-3959, 435/772-3265, or 435/772-3264 for the Field Institute), offers a variety of single and multiday outdoor workshops and classes, including the highly recommended photo workshops, which are led by institute director Michael Plyler. Fees for most of the 1-day programs start at $35, and multiday programs cost from $100 to $300.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.