Riverside Walk (with assistance) and Pa'rus Trail are the only trails that are wheelchair accessible.
Angels Landing Trail
A popular though strenuous hike that is most certainly not for anyone with even a mild fear of heights, this trail climbs 1,488 feet to a summit that offers spectacular views into Zion Canyon. Be prepared: The final half-mile follows a narrow, knife-edge trail along a steep ridge, where footing can be slippery even under the best of circumstances.
After crossing the footbridge over the Virgin River, turn north through a riparian woodland of cottonwood, box elder, and tamarisk, beneath Angels Landing. The trail climbs to the mouth of Refrigerator Canyon, around the west side of the monolith. Grottos and overhangs dot the red sandstone canyon walls.
Right before the head of the canyon, the series of 21 switchbacks built into a cleft in the wall is regarded as one of the engineering marvels of the park. At the top of the switchbacks, you begin the gradual ascent to Scout Lookout, the saddle behind Angels Landing, from which you get spectacular views into Zion Canyon. Here, the West Rim Trail heads off to the left, while the Angels Landing Trail turns southeast and begins the final brutal climb along the spine of a razorlike ridge. From this point, many stretches have support chains to hold on to, though there are no guardrails on Angels Landing itself. The views are stupendous, with the Virgin River gently bending around three sides at the bottom of the canyon, the Great White Throne and Red Arch Mountain to the southeast, and the entrance to the Narrows beyond the Temple of Sinawava to the north.
5.4 miles RT. Difficult. Access: Grotto Picnic Area along Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
Canyon Overlook Trail
Panoramic vistas are the lure on this self-guided trail that takes you to an overlook offering a magnificent view of lower Zion Canyon, the East and West temples, the Towers of the Virgin, and the Streaked Wall. The trail, which is sometimes slippery because of sand, begins with a series of uneven steps cut into the sandstone. There are long drop-offs into the narrow chasm of Pine Creek Canyon. The hike has an elevation gain of 163 feet.
1 mile RT. Moderate. Access: Parking area at the east terminus of the Zion-Mt. Carmel Tunnel.
Court of the Patriarchs
This short, steep, paved trail leads to a viewpoint that provides vistas of the Streaked Wall and the Sentinel to the south, the Court of the Patriarchs and Mount Moroni straight ahead (west), the Spearhead and Angels Landing to the north, and Mountain of the Sun and Twin Brothers above and behind (east). A footbridge crosses the river and connects to the Sand Bench Trail. See map above.
300 ft. RT. Easy. Access: Court of the Patriarchs parking area along Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
Emerald Pools Trail System
This can be either an easy 1-hour walk, if you just visit the Lower Pool, or a moderately strenuous 2-hour hike, if you decide to continue to the other pools. A .6-mile paved path leads from the Emerald Pools parking area through a forest of oak, maple, fir, and cottonwood, to several waterfalls, a hanging garden, and the picturesque Lower Emerald Pool. From here, a steeper, rocky trail continues .25 miles to Middle Emerald Pool, and then climbs another .3 mile past cactus, yucca, and juniper to Upper Emerald Pool, with another waterfall. As you climb the trail, there are views of soaring stone formations such as Lady Mountain, the Spearhead, Mount Majestic, Red Arch Mountain, Deertrap Mountain, and the Great White Throne. From the Middle Pool there is a long drop-off leading to the Lower Pool; the Upper Pool is enclosed on three sides by sheer cliffs and on the fourth by boulders. Total elevation gain is 69 feet to Lower Emerald Pool, 150 feet to Middle Emerald Pool, and 400 feet from the trail head to Upper Emerald Pool. Swimming or wading is not permitted in any of the pools.
1.2-2.5 miles RT. Easy to moderate. Access: Trail head across from Zion Lodge.
Hidden Canyon Trail
A particularly scenic hike along a paved trail that's sometimes cut from solid stone, Hidden Canyon Trail climbs 850 feet to the mouth of a narrow water-carved canyon. You'll pass slickrock formations, or smooth wind-polished rock formations, and sheer cliffs -- stay back from the edges, as they may be unstable and slippery. Walking up the dry streambed into the canyon, you'll pass grottos and other water-formed decorations on the canyon walls, including a small natural arch about a half-mile upstream. This trail is not recommended for anyone with a fear of heights.
2.4 miles RT. Moderate to difficult. Access: Weeping Rock parking lot, along Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
This easy, paved trail (suitable for wheelchairs and baby strollers) follows the Virgin River, crossing it several times. It provides views of the rock formations in lower Zion Canyon, including the West Temple, Watchman, Bridge Mountain, Sentinel, and East Temple formations. The trail has a 50-foot elevation gain and, unlike other park trails, is also open to bicycles and leashed pets. Watch for stop signs, where the trail crosses park roads, stay alert, and be aware of vehicles whose drivers may not easily see you on the winding roads. This trail links the campgrounds and south park entrance with the beginning of Zion Canyon Scenic Drive (closed to private vehicles, except in winter), and the rest of Zion Canyon.
3.5 miles RT. Easy. Access: Either the entrance to Watchman Campground, near the amphitheater parking area; or near the Nature Center in South Campground.
Riverside Walk & Gateway to the Narrows
The sound of the rushing Virgin River and the intriguing hanging gardens of wildflowers make this easy paved trail a favorite of ours, as it follows the river upstream to the beginning of the Zion Canyon Narrows. It's best in spring and early summer, when the river is at its peak, but the cooling breeze off the river is also refreshing in the summer heat, and the trailside exhibits add interest at any time. Accessible for wheelchair-bound travelers (with some assistance), the trail has an elevation change of only 57 feet over its 2 miles. The pavement ends at the Narrows, and here you can either turn around and head back, or continue upstream into the Narrows, where the canyon walls are sometimes less than 20 feet apart but more than 1,000 feet high. You should have a sturdy hiking staff for wading into the cold river over slippery rocks. Before entering the Narrows, check the weather forecast (posted at Zion Canyon Visitor Center) and discuss your plans with park rangers -- during rainstorms (common in July-Aug), flash floods are a serious threat.
2.2 miles RT. Easy. Access: Temple of Sinawava at the end of Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
Sand Bench Trail
This trail is most popular with hikers in the off-season, as horseback riders use it heavily from March through October. After crossing the river on the footbridge, this sandy trail turns left and meanders through a sagebrush meadow in the Court of the Patriarchs. It's not always well marked, so watch carefully for the junction, where you'll take the left fork across a small streambed -- after which, the 500-foot climb to the top of the bench begins. Soon the loop splits; if you choose the right fork, you'll pass under sheer stone walls and stark towers until you come out on top, where the Streaked Wall dominates the near view and the Watchman stands sentinel in the distance. As you approach the base of the Streaked Wall, you'll come to a rest area and corral that mark the end of the loop. The trail back takes you along the edge of an escarpment above the river, offering magnificent views of the Twin Brothers, Mountain of the Sun, and East Temple. If you choose the left fork, you'll see all these sights in reverse order, because the trail is a loop. Remember, horses have the right of way, so step to the side of the trail and stand quietly while they pass.
3.4-mile loop. Moderate. Access: Court of the Patriarchs Viewpoint, along Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
Taylor Creek Trail
You will probably get your feet wet as you hike along the Middle Fork of Taylor Creek, fording the water several times. Following the creek bed upstream, you'll have views of Tucupit and Paria points directly ahead, and Horse Ranch Mountain to the left. The Gustav Larson cabin is near the confluence of the North and Middle forks, after which the trail begins its ascent into the canyon between Tucupit and Paria points; it levels out as it follows the creek bed. The Arthur Fife homestead cabin is perched on a bench above the north bank of the creek. The trail ends at Double Arch Alcove, a large colorful grotto with an arch high above. The trail has an elevation gain of 450 feet.
5 miles RT. Moderate to difficult. Access: Trail head parking area along Kolob Canyons Rd., about 2 miles from Kolob Canyons Visitor Center.
This moderately strenuous trail gets surprisingly little use, possibly because it can be very hot in the middle of the day. Climbing 368 feet to a plateau near the base of the Watchman formation, it offers splendid views of lower Zion Canyon, Oak Creek Canyon, the Towers of the Virgin, and the West Temple formations. Stay on the main trail, created by the National Park Service -- it's 3 feet wide -- and avoid the smaller crisscross trails, created by mule deer seeking water and food. The area traversed by the trail is a spring seepage/riparian area rich with a variety of plants -- walk quietly and watch for wildlife, especially birds.
2.7 miles RT. Moderate. Access: Zion Canyon Visitor Center and Transportation Hub.
Weeping Rock Trail
This is among the park's shortest hikes. A self-guided nature trail, with interpretive signs explaining the natural history of the area, takes you through a mixed forest to a rock alcove with lush hanging gardens of ferns and wildflowers. The mist that emanates from the Weeping Rock above is delightfully refreshing on a hot afternoon. Although paved, the trail is relatively steep (gaining 98 ft.) and not suitable for wheelchairs.
.4 miles RT. Easy to moderate. Access: Weeping Rock parking lot, on Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
West Bank of the Virgin River
A pleasant hike along the river, this trail affords views of Zion Canyon plus the opportunity to see a myriad of birds, and an occasional mule deer coming out for an early evening drink After crossing the Virgin River at the Court of the Patriarchs Viewpoint, turn left into the middle of the Court to gaze up at the awe-inspiring stone monoliths. Leaving the Court, the trail turns north, levels out, and winds near the river, where you'll be walking amid cottonwood and box elder. As you trek northward, Cathedral Mountain and Mount Majestic slowly rise above you. This section of the trail is used heavily by horseback-riding groups.
Once you're past the spur leading east to Zion Lodge across Zion Canyon Scenic Drive, horse traffic comes to an end, and you embark on the wide, paved trail to the Emerald Pools. Follow the main trail up, around, and down to the Lower Pool, bypassing the spur trails leading to the Upper Pools. Follow signs for the Grotto Trail Head as you leave the Lower Pool, winding through lovely rock gardens and past delightful waterfalls. As the trail angles northward again to follow the river, the Great White Throne gradually emerges into view across the river; cross the bridge to the Grotto Trail Head, the end point of your hike.
2.6 miles one-way. Easy. Access: Court of the Patriarchs Viewpoint at the south end, the Grotto Trail Head at the north end, both along Zion Canyon Scenic Dr.
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.