Taiwanese-American blogging about his travels outdoors and occasionally his thoughts on life.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

Hiking The Narrows, Zion National Park, Utah

Trail Description

Length:  Up to 16 miles
Difficulty Assessment: Easy - Moderate
Trail Type: Out and Back

For more information, see:

1) Utah.com
2) Zion National Park

The Hike

On Thursday, we all awoke at around 630am and got to the park around 830am.

No traffic, very little crowds.

No indication of bad weather.

Before the park, we made a quick stop at Zion Adventure Company, a great little shop with various outdoor gear. It was here that we rented our neoprene socks, shoes, and walking sticks. Although you can hike the river in shoes and use trekking poles, I suggest renting the previously mentioned items for convenience. The socks keep your feet warm, the shoes grip the rocks great, and the sticks are long enough so you don't fall into any surprisingly deep holes while river walking.

Their site is: http://www.zionadventures.com/ and the cost for all three items (basic package) is 23.00. Consider it.

After grabbing our rentals, we paid for the parking permit (good for 7 days, 30.00 dollars), parked at the station, and took the shuttles to our stop. Everyone has to park near the entrance. There are a few stops further up the road that you can park at but more or less the bulk of the park can only be accessed by shuttle system. Refer to the map to identify which stop your trailhead begins at. For the Narrows, the stop we were looking for was Temple of Sinawava.

From the station to the Temple of Sinawava stop, it was roughly 30-40 minute, but the time passes quickly as you are left breathless by the sights that encompass you.

From the Temple of Sinawava, it is a 1 mile hike to the river entrance that most people take to begin their Narrows hike.

As you can see, even on a weekday, the Narrows is a popular hike. Plan accordingly. This was probably around 9-930am.

Once in the river, everything was just peachy. Around you are stunning examples of natural shapes while beneath you the river cools your body. When we went, temperatures were 90-100F but the Narrows was shaded during the morning.

Once in, your options are limited. You either can go all the way to the top, which you would need a permit for, you can go halfway, or you can branch off to the east. I have no recommendations which path to take, I am sure they are all amazing.

To return, simply retrace your steps. So keep that in mind when you hike through the canyon. However far you hike in, you need to hike that much back. Hiking back is easier though because by that point, you have an idea of how to cross rivers and avoid deep holes.

After finishing our hike by around 4-5pm. We ate dinner locally and headed home for an early bedtime.

The next day, we were going to hike Angel's Landing.
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