Canyon Overlook

Zion National Park

Short and sweet hike to sweeping views of lower Zion Canyon.

Hiking Moderate

Distance
1.6 km
Ascent
72 m
Descent
72 m
Duration
0-1 hrs
Low Point
1.6 km
High Point
1.6 km
Gradient
Canyon Overlook Map

Access to the Canyon Overlook Trail is at the east end of the Zion-Mt. Carmel Tunnel. It is highly likely that the main trailhead parking area will be full, but there is overflow parking just down the road.

Description

There is no way around the fact that this hike will absolutely, most definitely, be crowded. Despite the fact that this 1-mile roundtrip trek is a super-popular and very short outing, it is well worth doing.

This hike could easily be done on the way into Zion or on the way out—it is that short. Don't let the crowds or the brevity deter you, however: the views of lower Zion Canyon and the Pine Creek slot canyon are incomparable.

To begin this little adventure, ascend a well-built segment of rock steps and pass under some pretty rock overhangs. Be advised that this 1/2-mile route does involve traveling past some extremely steep drop-offs. Though there are railings, some people just can't handle the exposure-induced vertigo and can't go on.

It is impressive how much beauty can be packed into such a short distance, so take the time to appreciate the jaw-dropping display of geologic time en route to the overlook.

The Canyon Overlook is located at the incredibly steep edge of Zion Canyon. Be sure to take advantage of the interpretive signs while appreciating the railings that prevent that step-off-the-edge feeling.

Wander around and take in the views from various vantage points before hiking back to the trailhead. Ponder how amazing it is that so many people from all over the world can experience the magnificence of such a place. Doing so helps mitigate the impact of so many people.

Difficulty

Moderate

Hiking along trails with some uneven terrain and small hills. Small rocks and roots may be present.

Medium Exposure

2 out of 4

The trail contains some obstacles such as outcroppings and rock which could cause injury.

Remoteness

2 out of 4

Away from help but easily accessed.

Best time to visit

June, July, August, September, October

Features

  • Picturesque
  • Summit Hike

Similar routes nearby

Guidebooks in this area