Zion National Park is a land of towering sandstone cliffs, winding rivers, and breathtaking scenery. Nestled within this stunning landscape is Angels Landing, a trail that takes you to one of the most dramatic viewpoints in the park. This hike is not for the faint of heart, but for those seeking an unforgettable adventure, Angels Landing is a must-do.
The Angels Landing trail is a 5.4-mile round trip hike that begins at the Grotto Trailhead and follows the West Rim Trail for 2.7 miles. The first part of the hike is relatively easy, with a gradual ascent through a picturesque canyon. Along the way, you'll pass by the towering walls of Zion Canyon and get a glimpse of the Virgin River below.
As you approach Scout Lookout, the trail becomes steeper and more challenging. Scout Lookout is a small plateau that marks the beginning of the final ascent to Angels Landing. The trail from Scout Lookout to Angels Landing is a narrow spine with steep drop-offs on either side, and chains have been installed for safety. The final half-mile of the trail is particularly challenging, with a series of steep switchbacks that lead to the summit.
The reward for completing the Angels Landing hike is an unforgettable view of Zion Canyon. From the top of Angels Landing, you'll have a 360-degree view of the park, with the towering cliffs and red rock formations stretching out before you. The view is particularly spectacular at sunset, when the colors of the canyon are at their most vibrant.
Tips for Hiking Angels Landing
While Angels Landing is a breathtaking hike, it's also one that requires preparation and caution. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your hike:
- Start early in the morning to avoid the crowds and the midday heat. The trail can get crowded, so it's best to get an early start to beat the crowds and avoid the heat of the day.
- Bring plenty of water and snacks to keep you hydrated and energized. The trail is steep and challenging, so it's important to stay hydrated and nourished.
- Wear sturdy hiking shoes with good traction. The trail is rocky and uneven, so it's important to wear shoes with good traction to prevent slips and falls.
- Be aware of your limits and turn back if necessary. The final half-mile of the trail is particularly challenging, and if you're uncomfortable with heights or narrow paths, it's best to turn back.
- Use caution on the narrow ridgeline and hold onto the chains for safety. The narrow ridgeline can be scary, but if you use caution and hold onto the chains, you'll be safe.
If you're planning to hike Angels Landing, it's important to know that the trail can be closed during inclement weather or high winds. Before you set out, check the park's website for current trail conditions and closures.
In addition to Angels Landing, Zion National Park offers a variety of other hikes and activities. Some of the park's other popular hikes include The Narrows, Observation Point, and Emerald Pools. The park also offers guided ranger tours, horseback riding, and river rafting.
Angels Landing is one of the most exhilarating hikes in Zion National Park, offering stunning views of the canyon and a challenging adventure for those willing to take on the trail. With proper preparation and caution, this hike is a must-do for any adventurer visiting Zion National Park. Whether you're an experienced hiker or just looking for a memorable adventure, Angels Landing is a hike that you'll never forget.