Zion National Park Accommodations, Hotels, Vacation Rentals & Lodging

5 days of Hiking, Camping & Backpacking in Southern Utah’s Zion National Park.

For this adventure, I’ll be spending 5 days exploring Zion National Park with my friends Derrick, Dave, and Tayson from Outdoor Vitals and Randy from Outdoor.Detour https://www.instagram.com/outdoordetour/

We’ll be doing 3 different trips:
A West Rim Backpacking Trip
Exploring & hiking the Frontcountry Zion National Park area while car camping in Springdale, Utah.
Backcountry camping on a top-down Narrows hike, ending at the Zion visitor center back in Springdale.

Note: All backcountry camping in Zion requires a permit. For details, visit the Zion NPS website: https://www.nps.gov/zion/planyourvisit/backpackingpermits.htm

For an easier read, check out my full blog post here: http://www.sintax77.com/hiking-zion-national-park/

Objective #1: Backcountry camp on Zion Canyon’s West Rim
Trailhead Used: West Rim Trailhead, Near Lava Point Overlook.
N37° 22.899′ W113° 01.370′

West Rim Itinerary, Day 1:

Park at the West Rim Trailhead near Lava Point.
This is a gravel lot with parking for a half dozen cars or so. It’s about a 40 minute drive from Springdale, Utah. The latter part of the drive is a dirt road, cars should be fine with a bit of care.
Head south on the West Rim Trail
Camp at West Rim campsite #4 N37° 17.144′ W112° 59.030′

West Rim Hike-In Mileage: 8 miles
West Rim Hike-In Gross Elevation Gain: 1,073

West Rim Itinerary, Day 2:

Backtrack north on the West Rim Trail
Return to the trailhead lot near Lava Point.
Ghost town pit-stop in Grafton, Utah
Continue on to Springdale, Utah.
Check into the Quality Inn campground in Springdale, within walking distance of the Zion visitor center and park entrance. https://www.zioncamp.com/locations/zion-national-park-lodging-quality-inn-springdale/
Have some tacos at the Whiptail Grill, right next door to the campground.

Objective #2: Explore Zion National Park’s Frontcountry & Springdale, Utah.

Zion Frontcountry / Springdale Itinerary. Day 1:

Take the free Zion bus, or a short walk north to the Zion National Park entrance.
Take the bus from the visitor center to Big Bend.
From the Big Bend bus stop, take the trail south along the Virgin River to Weeping Rock.
Road hike a bit along the Mount Carmel Highway.
Hop a bus back to the Zion Visitor Center.
Explore Springdale, eat some ice cream at the Zion Candy Company.

Objective #3: Hike and Backcountry Camp the Narrows, from the Top Down.

Trailhead: Chamberlain’s Ranch Trailhead (aka Zion Narrows Upper Trailhead)
N37° 23.121′ W112° 50.339′

Note: This was an end-to-end hike that required us to park a second vehicle at the Zion visitor center in Springdale to use as a shuttle back to the starting point.

Zion NP – The Narrows, Top-down Hike Itinerary, Day 1:

Park at the Narrows Upper Trailhead.
Head southwest on the trail, which is actually dirt road, for the first 3 miles.
Continue to follow the trail along the Virgin River, through the Narrows.
This trail is very easy to follow, as it is literally the river. A majority of the time is spent walking in the river bed in ankle deep to knee deep water depending on conditions, depending on current water-flow conditions.
Note for reference: The ccf reading during our trip was roughly 40 CCF. Anything under 50 ccf is considered ideal. Above 100 cfs, conditions can be difficult and hazardous. At 130 ccf, top-down narrows hikes will be closed. At 150 ccf, bottom up Narrows hikes will be closed. During a flash flood, flows can exceed 1000 cfs.
Setup camp at the Narrows campsite #12. N37° 19.982′ W112° 57.373′

Narrows Day 1 Hiking Time: 7 Hours

Zion NP – The Narrows, Top-down Hike Itinerary, Day 2:

Break camp & continue south along the Virgin River.
Exit the trail & catch a bus at the Temple of Sinawava shuttle stop.
Return to the Zion Visitor Center
Drive to retrieve starting vehicle

Narrows Day 2 Hiking Time: 4 Hours

Notable Gear Seen:

Outdoor Vitals Rhyolite Backpack, 60L https://amzn.to/2puySfz
Outdoor Vitals Ultralight Hammock w/ Whoopie Sling Suspension https://amzn.to/2DhNY1Y
Outdoor Vitals 30° Underquilt http://bit.ly/2xtLKaf
Outdoor Vitals 30° Topquilt http://bit.ly/2xtLKaf
Outdoor Vitals Pillow https://amzn.to/2pqZs9K
Outdoor Vitals Tarp https://amzn.to/2DfK7SY
Outdoor Vitals Hammock Bugnet https://amzn.to/2Nr6OIK
Outdoor Vitals Dominion 2.5p Tent https://amzn.to/2DloDUO
Outdoor Vitals 1p Tent http://bit.ly/2xtLKaf
Outdoor Vitals Sleeping pad, un-insulated https://amzn.to/2xDzEL8
Outdoor Vitals Sleeping pad, insulated http://bit.ly/2xtLKaf
Outdoor Vitals Aerie Underquilt / Sleeping Bag https://amzn.to/2ptJlrQ
Garmin In Reach https://amzn.to/2xCPhCF
Spot Messenger https://amzn.to/2NvExAL

Disclosure: This post & video contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission for purchases made through my links. Cross reference, do your own research and make your own decisions, duh 😉
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38 replies
  1. Danny Whitlock
    Danny Whitlock says:

    Awesome hiking adventure in Zion National Park with amazing panoramic beautiful scenery. I subscribed to your channel just last week and I’m enjoying watching your hiking adventures, I’m from Ga and I love the outdoors and especially the Smokey Mountains 🏔. Thanks for sharing, enjoy and have a Blessed Sunday !!! Danny

    Reply
  2. John Chrysler
    John Chrysler says:

    The OV guys are great and their stuff is solid. I have a bunch of their gear and I’m happy with it. The pack can carry a lot of weight and it’s very comfortable. Priced well too. Glad they gave you the opportunity! Keep it up!

    Reply
  3. dml505
    dml505 says:

    that "free" pillow is a scam….totally turned me off to buying anything from outdoor vitals ….small shipping fee is more that what that stupid pillow is worth and the "limited time" ya there's no limit…shame for a company to sink to that level..

    Reply
  4. Abigail Marie
    Abigail Marie says:

    Did you just say go #1 in the river??? No!! Never go on the river, it causes bacteria and disease to grow so people downstream get sick. Always go at least 200 ft room the river. That is like people who pee in the pool and think it is ok. Definitely not ok. That chlorine is ok on its own, but when mixed when urine, it becomes toxic with disinfection byproducts. Some of these compounds that are created are even used for warfare. Never go in the water, pee or poo, it doesn't matter. The best way is to dig a cat hole for BOTH #1 and #2, then burry it. Learn from the cats, that is what they do.

    Reply

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