Looking for an awesome hike in Zion, but don’t have much time to spend in the park?
The Canyon Overlook Trail may be a perfect stop for you!
Canyon Overlook Trail is only a one-mile round trip that provides incredible views of the lower canyon with quintessential Zion scenery! If you choose to hike it, you’ll climb gently along the Pine Creek Canyon and underneath some incredible sandstone overhangs, providing a spectacular short hiking experience.
The trail itself is not very difficult. You’ll start with some carved stairs that wrap around to a winding traverse along the Pine Creek Canyon that has some metal walkways and railings as guides. The path is well-traveled and very clear, so no need to worry about extensive planning for this hike! In fact, it is easily one that you can throw on the front or back end of your day. While hiking, we overheard that this trail is among the most sought out for recreationalists that are looking to get an epic view of the sunset, and photographers that are hoping to catch the moment, as well!
After climbing 163 feet (in elevation), you’ll arrive at the overlook, whcih has prominent railings and a landing pad with plenty of space to spread out and enjoy the views. As with anywhere in Zion, take proper precautions when hiking and site-seeing as there are exposed cliffs and fall potentials in several areas. This overlook is very impressive, but be sure to keep kids and youth close by if you are concerned about the hazards that surround the area and the exposed drops. That being said, you will have some incredible views from this area! Granted that you’d have lights and take the proper precaution, maybe it’s worth trying to hike it near sunset to enjoy the colors?
We would highly recommend checking Canyon Overlook Trail out, even if you have only a brief amount of time in Zion. One thing that we haven’t mentioned yet is that the trailhead is extremely close to the East Entrance of the park. The parking lot, traveling from the East, lies directly in front of the entrance to the famous 1.1-mile tunnel. Be sure to park here and use the restroom facilities if needed! There are great opportunities to lead a group up the trail and easily stay together for the duration of your time there.
Maps can be found online and at the park upon your arrival, although we found that no navigation piece is necessary for this hike! Check out http://www.zionnational-park.com/ or http://www.nps.gov/zion/index.htm for more maps and information on hikes in Zion, if this has piqued your interest!
Date Hiked: January 22, 2015