Top three reasons to go hiking in Zion National Park
Explore the most popular national park in Utah
Experience the epic panoramas of Zion Canyon
Cool off with a water hike in the Virgin River Narrows
Thanks to the hidden creeks, lush foliage, and sky-splitting red cliffs that adorn its landscapes, Zion National Park is known as Utah’s hiking and backpacking mecca. Carved out by erosion over countless millennia, the park hosts over 100 spectacular hiking trails, ranging from family-friendly ridgeline strolls to upstream trudges through picturesque river basins. Whether you’re traversing the slippery river rocks of the Zion Narrows or trekking stunning alcoves overlooking the Emerald Pools, the hikes here never disappoint. Couple that with some of the greatest natural backdrops in the Western US, and it’s easy to see why Zion is a synonym for adventure. Learn more about hiking in Zion National Park from Maggie Slepian, backpacker, trail runner, hiker, and mountain biker.
March through October
Las Vegas, NV, is 3 hours away from Zion NP
Intermediate to advanced
Book This Adventure
Basecamp Hiking Tour of Zion National Park
Experience Utah’s most famous national park on an all-inclusive three-day hiking adventure! Join a seasoned local guide and explore Zion’s most iconic natural landmarks, such as the stunning rim of Zion Canyon or the cool waters of Virgin River Narrows. Unwind in luxurious campgrounds, indulge in fresh, local meals, and spend your nights under Zion’s starry skies!
Day 1: St. George to Snow Canyon State Park
Meet your guide in St. George and shuttle to Snow Canyon State Park, where most of the day’s hiking will be done. Crafted from the same Navajo Sandstone as Zion, Snow Canyon is a beautiful blend of lava and slickrock. Take in some stunning views of the park and visit young lava tubes before taking a lunch break and completing the loop. After a short drive to Zion, set up camp and enjoy a delicious dinner.
Hiking distance: 6 miles / 9.7 km
Elevation gain: 700 ft / 215 m
Day 2: Virgin River Narrows
On your second day, you’ll be hiking what’s arguably the most iconic part of Zion—the Virgin River Narrows. Stroll down the paved River Trail, buttressed by water on your left and a massive cliff on your right. When the sidewalk ends, you’ll enter the river, hiking in moving water until your turnaround point at Orderville Canyon. Take some epic pics and enjoy a relaxing shoreline lunch before returning to the trailhead.
Hiking distance: 5 miles / 8 km
Elevation gain: 60 ft / 20 m
Day 3: Zion Canyon, Scout Lookout, and Emerald Pools
After breakfast, break camp and embark on an exciting expedition to Zion Canyon. Kick off your day by hiking a hidden-gem trail through the lower canyon. Then, board the Zion shuttle to the trailhead. Hike up to Scout Lookout and relish in stimulating views of the surrounding canyon system before continuing along the canyon walls to the Emerald Pools complex. After taking some time to marvel at the pools, descend to the historic Zion Lodge for a late lunch. Head back to St. George, where you get to say your goodbyes and plan your next adventure!
Hiking distance: 7.5 miles / 12 km
Elevation gain: 2,100 ft / 640 m
Meet your guide
We have been extremely pleased with our Wildland trip! We chose the 3 days Zion/Bryce base camp tour. This was our first. We feel so grateful we chose to do it this way. We were able to see more and do more due to it being planned out for us. I had no worries or stress about packing food/snacks/tents. It was so nice to have all that done for us! Jennie was so knowledgeable and a great leader. She made fantastic meals and was able to help us navigate a busy holiday weekend. Would totally recommend this trip, and will book again!
I just went online and found Wildland Trekking…first of all, I have to say they went above and beyond to get us booked. There were 6 in my party and they were pretty booked up, but they managed to make a way for us to go to Zion for a 3-day 2-night basecamp trip. Our guide, Kelsi was AMAZING!!! I just had no idea what a difference she would make! She was so knowledgeable, so considerate, so attentive, so patient, and SO FUN!! We loved that we did not wait in a single line. Every meal Kelsi made was special and delicious! She carried our lunch on her back every day and then spread out her table cloth and whipped up a mouth-watering, healthy meal!! SOOOO yummy! She gave us lots of freedom too. My kids wanted to do angles landing which was not on the itinerary, and so WE DID ANGLES LANDING! It was awesome! I really can not say enough about Wildland Trekking. If all of their guides are like Kelsi, you will no go wrong!
This was a repeat trip for us with Wildland. We backpacked rim to rim before, and this time, we took our kids. We had a private 3-day trip and our kids loved it. This meant a lot to us. We look forward to backpacking with them next time. As the mother, I enjoy no guiding, no cooking, no packing, no worries. It’s better than any other vacation!
What an incredible experience! Our guide Rosie was encouraging and provided informative commentary. She prepared the healthiest meals and accommodated dietary requests. This experience has inspired me to take more active vacations. I will absolutely use Wildland again in the near future.
My Zion National Park trip with Wildland was fantastic. Everything was well organized and the guide was a pleasure. The organization has been a pleasure to work with and I am already thinking about my next trip.
Get complete checklist for hiking and camping equipment.
Things to know
Covid measures in Zion National Park, Utah
57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.
We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Zion National Park, UT, please refer to the official US guidelines for international travel and Utah’s COVID-19 travel guidelines.
Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!
What you get on this adventure:
- An experienced, local hiking guide with extensive knowledge of the area
- Three days of hiking and backpacking
- Transportation from St. George, UT, to the park and back
- Round-trip transportation
- Campsite accommodations for the duration of the tour
- All meals and drinks for the duration of the tour
- National park entrance fees
- Trekking poles, personal and group camping equipment
What’s not included:
- Transportation to St. George
- Hotel accommodations in St. George
- Personal hiking equipment
How fit do I need to be?
This trip is meant for hikers with decent fitness levels and prior hiking experience. You’ll be hiking for 6-8 hours a day on a mix of well-maintained trails and rugged terrain, overcoming moderate distances with some height exposure and up to 2,100 ft (640 m) of elevation change. Keep in mind, the weather in summer can be very hot and you’ll also be packing an 8-12 lb (3-5 kg) backpack filled with water and other things you’ll need throughout the day.
What do I need to bring?
Here’s a list of the equipment you need to bring:
- Day pack large enough to carry all the items listed (around a 25-40L bag)
- Hiking poles — optional
- Water bottle or hydration bladder (2L capacity)
- Sturdy hiking boots or shoes
- At least three pairs of wool or synthetic hiking socks
- Spare clothes for layering and three days of hiking
- Waterproof hiking pants
- Waterproof rain jacket
- Toiletries (sunscreen, hand sanitizer, bug spray, toilet paper, etc.)
- Headlamp or flashlight
- Camera — optional (but recommended)
Personal and group camping gear will be provided by your guide. Dress comfortably and for the weather in clothes you can move in. We suggest bringing clothing appropriate for the season. Layers are best and don’t wear jeans.
Group sizes and age requirements
Group sizes and prices:
- For this adventure, the usual client-to-guide ratio is 6:1, with a maximum of 12 participants per tour.
- A minimum of 4 participants is required for the tour to run. The cost does not decrease as the group grows.
Hiking in Zion National Park can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.
Min. age requirements:
- If you are older than 12, you’re good to go.
- Minors between the ages of 5 and 12 may be permitted to join private hikes on a case-by-case basis, with final approval and specific logistical requirements.
If your group has hikers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.
Deposits and cancellation policy
A $250 per person deposit to secure your place is due upon booking. The remaining amount is paid 2 months (60 days) prior to departure. Once the trip is confirmed by the guide, the cancellation policy stated below applies.
- If Client cancels the Booking prior to sixty (60) calendar days in advance of the trip contemplated by the booking and within ten (10) days of making the reservation, Client is entitled to a full refund minus a $50 administrative fee.
- If Client cancels the Booking prior to sixty (60) calendar days in advance of the trip contemplated by the booking and after ten (10) days of making the reservation, Client is entitled to a full refund minus a $50 administrative fee.
- For cancellations fifty-nine (59) to thirty (30) calendar days in advance, Client is entitled to a refund in the amount of fifty percent (50%) of the total trip cost.
- After that deadline, Client is not entitled to any refund. Any reimbursable expenses arising out of the Booking incurred by Guide prior to the date of cancellation (including but not limited to plane tickets, car rental payments, and lodging or transportation fees) are non-refundable as soon as they are incurred by the Guide.
Getting there and meeting location
To get to Zion National Park, most people fly into McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, NV, 3 hours away. From there, you can rent a car or take a bus to St. George, UT, where you’ll be meeting your guide the evening before the tour.