Hiking in Utah

Utah is one of the most interesting places to hike in the United States. If you like geology and rock formations (or hiking in very hot temperatures), this is the place for you! Utah is home to some very popular national parks such as Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, and Zion National Park among others. All three are very distinct and unique in their own ways.

At Arches National Park, you will find some amazing arch formations and bright red rocks on the high plateaus. At Bryce Canyon you will be mystified at the interesting HooDoo formations and may not believe how they are able to stay standing. Zion has a number of great hikes including Angels Landing which climbs high up the cliffs and the Narrows which is a walk through the river upstream with canyon walls on either side. These three parks in southern Utah are highlights of any trip to the Southwest and shouldn't be missed.
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Navajo Loop and Queen's Garden Trail
Navajo Loop and Queen's Garden Trail
Tropic, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 3.5 miles, 1-3 hours
Hike into the canyon to experience Bryce Canyon's famous hoodoos; the best way to see the amazing hoodoos up close

This hike is hands down the best way to see the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon. The views from sunrise point and sunset point on the rim area stunning, but you will experience an entirely different bryce canyon from the canyon floor while looking up at the hoodoos. You start by hiking down Wall street a narrow canyon with high rock walls on either side....
Lone Peak
Lone Peak
Hidden Hills, Utah, United States
 
Climb to the top of this 11,000 foot Wasatch Peak which rises above Salt Lake City with a massive glacial cirque.

This is a fairly strenuous climb to the top of one of the tallest peaks of the Wasatch Range. Reaching the cliff-lined summit will require some scrambling up steep slopes and over boulders. Follow the track in this guide closely to find your way up a variation to the top that takes you up a steep coulouir. Bring a camera as you will have specatacular...
Delicate Arch
Delicate Arch
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 3.2 miles, 1-3 hours
A short hike in Arches National Park to Utah's most recognizable arch

Your trip to Arches National Park is not complete without first taking a trip to visit Delicate Arch. You will likely recognize Delicate Arch from the Utah license plate. The hike to Delicate Arch is just over 1.5 miles each way, totaling 3.2 miles all together. It is best hiked in spring and fall when the temperatures are cooler, or during the golden...
Devils Garden and the Primitive Trail
Devils Garden and the Primitive Trail
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 7.2 miles, 1-3 hours
Take a tour of the best formations of Arches National Park

Devils Garden is the second most-visited section of Arches National Park, after Delicate Arch, and home to the longest trail in the park: a 7.2-mile loop touring 7 different arches, all spectacular. Many visitors hike the shortened version of the loop: 1 mile along a paved path to Landscape Arch, with 2 short optional detours to Tunnel Arch and Pine...
Cecret Lake
Cecret Lake
Albion Alps, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 2.5 miles, Half day
A wonderful family hike to beautiful alpine lake in the Little Cottonwood Canyons Albion Basin

This is a very short 1 mile hike to a beautiful alpine lake in the Albion Basin region near Alta and Snowbird Ski Resorts. This area is very popular on summer weekends so parking may be difficult. Take the time to relax at the lake and take lots of photos of your family with the mountains as a backdrop.
Arches National Park Driving Tour
Arches National Park Driving Tour
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Drive through Arches National Park and see the highlights along the way, with a few stops for optional hikes to see more

This driving tour will take you to every major sight in Arches National Park and then some. Start at the Visitor Center to learn some background about the park and the area's history before driving along the main road through the park. Stop at Park Avenue to walk through a canyon with wild rock formations on either side, stop at several turnoffs...
Fins & Things 4x4 Trail, Moab, UT
Fins & Things 4x4 Trail, Moab, UT
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 9.8 miles, Half day
Cruise up and down incredibly steep, giant slickrock fins

The dominant feature of this trail is its steepness and great traction on the slickrock. Unbelievable fun and fantastic scenery. Best part is between Points 9 and 13. Small fee required to enter. Fee includes map with rules and regulations. Read and follow rules carefully. For information on this trail, contact the Sand Flats Recreation Area at (435)...
Windows Loop Trail
Windows Loop Trail
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 0.7 miles, 1 hour or less
An easy hike to see three massive arches up close in Arches National Park

This short hike is a great way to first see the park on foot. The entire trail is gravel and there is only a very slight gain of elevation. First head to North WIndow where you can walk under the arch and stare up and the massive rock above. Then loop around to the South Windows where you will see a couple more arches. These windows are higher up...
False Kiva Hike
False Kiva Hike
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 1.6 miles, 1-3 hours
Island In The Sky District, Canyonlands National Park, Utah, United States

False Kiva is a Class II archeological site located in an alcove in Canyonlands National Park. It's also known from the famous photograph by Wally Pacholka, showing the milky way in all it's glory. When you get there you'll be amazed by the silence of the alcove and the view ahead. You'll have a view on the Canyons and the Candlestick tower in the...
Canyon Overlook Trail
Canyon Overlook Trail
Hurricane, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 1.0 miles, 1 hour or less
Hike up for a spectacular view of Zion Canyon on your entrance to Zion National Park

The Canyon Overlook Trail is a great introduction to Zion National Park if you are entering from the east. The trail is short--less than 1 mile out and back, and the elevation gains are fairly steep but not too exhausting. This trail takes you away from the road, through a large natural cave carved out of the rock walls, and eventually offers an...
Observation Point
Observation Point
Zion Lodge, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 8.1 miles, Half day
A hike to the highest point in Zion National Park

This is a strenuous hike to the highest point in Zion National Park. You look down on Angels Landing and have a sweeping vista of the main canyon that makes up Zion. It is a stunning view.
The Narrows - Zion National Park
The Narrows - Zion National Park
Zion National Park, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 3.1 miles, 1 hour or less
Walk through the water between high canyon walls as a nice way to cool off in Zion National Park

The Narrows is a nice "hike" if you are in Zion during a hot day (any time in summer). The trail starts art the end of Zion Canyon Scenic Dr, also called the "Riverside Trail". Go as far as you like up the river but step carefully, as the water can get chest high in some places.
The Subway (Top-Down) - Zion National Park
The Subway (Top-Down) - Zion National Park
Zion National Park, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 7.5 miles, Full day
This 7.5-mile trail takes hikers through one of the most beautiful sections of slot canyon in Zion National Park.

The Subway is a strenuous day-long hike with some beginner technical canyoneering aspects. The route involves several short rappels, some down-climbing, and a few cold swims. This route starts at the Wildcat Canyon Trailhead and ends at the Left Fork Trailhead. Much of the hike involves walking through shallow water.
Garner Cave
Garner Cave
North Ogden, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 1.9 miles, 1-3 hours

Garner Cave is a rather heavily visited cave since it's close to the city. This hike is said to be on the difficult scale, and I probably wouldn't disagree. I have personally gone up there 3 times now but it's not the hardest hike I've done. The cave has been visited by lots of people. There are a few spots that you could hurt yourself in there,...
Mount Olympus - Salt Lake City
Mount Olympus - Salt Lake City
Dublin Town, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 7.0 miles, Half day
Climb 4,000 feet on this great trail to fantatic views over the Wasatch Valley and Salt Lake City.

This is a steep, Class 3, climb up 4,000 to the top of a peak with great views over Salt Lake City and the surrounding Wasatch Mountains. You will be surprised at how abruptly you leave the bustling city below and find yourself high in an alpine environment. This is a good peak for budding mountaineers to start with. This Trip is about 7 miles round...
Many Pools - Zion National Park
Many Pools - Zion National Park
East Zion, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 2.3 miles, 1-3 hours
A nice moderate unmaintained trail on the East side of Zion.

For those who like the leisurely laid back trail of Emerald Pools, but could do without the bumper to bumper traffic, Many Pools is for you. Only sightly more difficult (not a maintained trail) Many Pools offers the beginner hiker (and family) a glimpse into how wind and water create slot canyons. Sometimes this hike is referred to as "Root Canal"...
Mossy Cave, Bryce Canyon
Mossy Cave, Bryce Canyon
Tropic, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 0.6 miles, 1 hour or less
A short and easy hike where you can see hoodoos, a small waterfall, and a mossy cave with icefalls.

An easy stroll in Bryce next to a creek that brings you past hoodoos, to a waterfall, and then to a mossy cave where icicles hang in the shady places. If you feel adventurous, climb to the hole in the wall above the falls. Mossy Cave is the trail you want to go to if you have a very short time and want to do a little hike. Or, if you have guests...
Queen's Garden Trail, Bryce Canyon Utah
Queen's Garden Trail, Bryce Canyon Utah
Tropic, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 0.8 miles, 1-3 hours
A video tour of the Queen's Garden Trail at sunrise. Enjoy the sights and sounds along the waypoints of this hike.

This is a short 0.8 mile hike down into one of the most beautiful places in Bryce Canyon, Queen's Garden. It's an easy trail with only 320 ft. of elevation loss on the way down and the same back up. I recommend going down before sunrise via headlamp so you are well down the trail when the sun comes up. You will beat the yelling crowds and be down...
Kings Peak - High Point of Utah
Kings Peak - High Point of Utah
Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 23 miles, Multiple days
A beautiful 2 day climb in the High Uintas Wilderness to reach the ceiling of Utah

This 13,528 ft peak towers above 3 distinct valleys of open alpine meadows and lakes. In this guide you will ascend via the Henry's Fork valley and camp overnight at Dollar Lake. In the early morning you will then head up the steep Gunsight Pass and then head to Kings Peak. Definitely bring your camera for this one.
Lower Calf Creek Falls in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Easy: 5.9 miles, 1-3 hours
Calf Creek Falls is one of the most well known and unique features in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.

Calf Creek Falls is one of the most well known and unique features in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The trail follows Calf Creek to the 126' high falls. The hike is 6 miles round trip and takes average hikers 3-4 hours. Elevation change on the trail is minimal, but the trail is sandy and walking can be strenuous, especially in hot weather....
Fifth Water Hot Springs in Diamond Fork Canyon
Fifth Water Hot Springs in Diamond Fork Canyon
Diamond Fork Canyon, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 2.3 miles, 1-3 hours
These hot springs are a very fun and scenic attraction. There are several pools of varying temperatures and a waterfall.

Fifth Water Hot Springs are located in Diamond Fork Canyon, which splits off from Spanish Fork Canyon. Total drive time from Spanish Fork, Utah is about a half hour on paved roads. At the trailhead, there is lots of parking and a bathroom. From the trailhead, follow the trail southeast along the east bank of Sixth Water Creek. Do not cross the foot...
The Narrows (Top-Down) - Zion National Park
The Narrows (Top-Down) - Zion National Park
Zion National Park, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 15.5 miles, Multiple days
This unparalleled overnight or extended day hike follows the Virgin River through almost 16 miles of beautiful canyons.

The Narrows is perhaps the most famous hike in Zion National Park. Most visitors take the day hike starting at the Temple of Sinawava, but they only get a small taste of this remarkable canyon. A more adventurous option is to take a shuttle to Chamberlain Ranch and walk 15.5 miles through the entire Narrows. This hike requires a Zion backcountry...
Sardine Peak - Ogden Outlook
Sardine Peak - Ogden Outlook
Snowbasin, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 22 miles, 1-3 hours
Snowbasin / Cache National Forest -Maples to Wheeler Creek to Sardine Peak to Ogden Canyon Overlook & back to Snowbasin

This trail takes in the best of Snowbasin and the Cache Nation Forest. The trail is 90% covered by trees. At the top of Sadine Peak you can see over pinview reservoir. At the top of Ogden Overlook you have a 360 degree view over ogden canyon. The climbs are switchbacks with easy very few obsticles. Sardine is a newer trail so not as traveled as other...
Bull Canyon 4x4 Road, Moab, UT
Bull Canyon 4x4 Road, Moab, UT
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 17.7 miles, 1-3 hours
This trail provides access to bottom of Gemini Bridges

Fun drive through narrow canyons and sandy swales that takes you to hiking trail to bottom of impressive Gemini Bridges. Continue west beyond hiking trail parking lot through another impressive canyon. After finishing Bull Canyon, continue south to Day Canyon overlook. Fun area for ATVs. Open all year weather permitting. Best time to go: Spring and...
Lady Mountain - Zion National Park
Lady Mountain - Zion National Park
Main Zion Canyon, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 1.3 miles, Full day
Demanding summit hike on an unmaintained but well marked trail.

Lady Mountain is the southern peak overlooking the Emerald Pools. It was the first official trail in Zion National Park that went from valley floor to summit, but it was closed in the late 1960's because it was so steep and dangerous. The trail is no longer maintained but for those with some climbing experience, the old route can still be followed...
Bristlecone Loop Trail
Bristlecone Loop Trail
Kanab, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 1.0 miles, 1 hour or less
Take an easy 1-mile stroll to see flora and fauna unlike anywhere else in Bryce Canyon National Park

If you are looking for an easy hike in Bryce Canyon National Park they don’t come much easier than the Bristlecone Loop Trail. The trail starts in the southern end of the park, 18 miles from the park entrance, near Rainbow. It is also the highest point in the park at 9,100ft, which means that you will see plants and animals not seen in any other...
Snowbasin - Needles Trail
Snowbasin - Needles Trail
Snowbasin, Utah, United States
 
Needles trail, 18 mile round trip, 7,000 feet climb, thru aspen trees, to needles lodge. Epic downhill ride.

Snowbasin - Needles trail is the main artery which divides into many smaller trails - Needles trail #1 (Each trail has a designated number) starts at the Snobasin Resort and one can climb all the way to the Needles Lodge 7,000 ft of elevation change. Trails transecting from Needles including: Maples #13; Green Pond Loop #11; Porcupine #3; Sunshine #6;...
Red Butte - Kolob Terrace
Red Butte - Kolob Terrace
Kolob Terrace, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 2.7 miles, Full day
Technical summit hike. Stunning views. Challenging route finding required. Includes the beautiful Red Window Arch.

Driving along the Kolob Terrace section of Zion National Park I am reminded, the vast majority of scenery, canyons and peaks reside outside of the main Zion canyon. North and South Guardian Angels, The Subway, and others offer a more primitive recreation to those seeking a road less traveled. Red Butte is located just outside of Zion National Park...
Cassidy Arch - Capitol Reef National Park
Cassidy Arch - Capitol Reef National Park
Fruita, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 3.1 miles, 1-3 hours
This 3-mile hike takes you to the top of Cassidy Arch, which is situated 500 feet above the road and trailhead below.

Named after the famous Butch Cassidy, Cassidy Arch is located in the central portion of Capitol Reef National Park, specifically just within the western walls of Grand Wash, beside the Scenic Drive. The arch trail is a spur off of the larger Frying Pan Trail, a route that climbs northeast atop the Waterpocket Fold before dropping down into Cohab Canyon...
Hickman Bridge - Capitol Reef National Park
Hickman Bridge - Capitol Reef National Park
Fruita, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 1.8 miles, 1 hour or less
The Hickman Natural Bridge trail is a very relaxing and scenic trail in Capitol Reef National Park.

The Hickman Natural Bridge trail is a very relaxing and scenic trail in Capitol Reef National Park. A trail brochure - available at the trailhead - points out 17 things to observe along the hike. Notable among these are an indian granary, a small natural bridge called Nels Johnson Bridge, and, of course, Hickman Bridge.
Box Canyon
Box Canyon
Wales, Utah, United States
 
Slot Canyon off of Maple Canyon

Box Canyon is a classic Maple Canyon hike, with no rock climbing gear required. There are three places that have fixed ropes to help you out. Beautiful undulating canyon walls, which makes the canyon look like it is melting butter. Of course, the walls like the rest of Maple Canyon are the unique conglomerate rock, with granite and quartz cemented...
Sand Flats 4x4 Road, Moab, UT
Sand Flats 4x4 Road, Moab, UT
Moab, Utah, United States
 
Easy: 19.2 miles, 1-3 hours
Four-wheel drive is usually not required except at east end

Road traverses entire length of Sand Flats Recreation Area and climbs into the Manti-La Sal National Forest. Make a loop by circling either direction on La Sal Mountain Loop Road back to Moab. Side trip to Porcupine Rim Campground has great views of Castle Valley. Fee required for Sand Flats Recreation Area if you stop. Home to the famous Slickrock...
Spectra Point Trail - Cedar Breaks National Monument
Spectra Point Trail - Cedar Breaks National Monument
Cedar Breaks National Monument, Utah, United States
 
Moderate: 1.9 miles, 1-3 hours
Two mile round trip hike along the rim of Cedar Breaks amphitheater.

Located at 10,350 feet elevation, Cedar Breaks National Monument makes a nice reprieve from the summers heat found at Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon. Cedar Breaks is host to only two trails, the Ramparts Trail which includes Spectra Point and a circular 2 mile Alpine Pond Trail. The National Monument makes up for the lack of "in-house"...
Cockeye Falls - Zion National Park
Cockeye Falls - Zion National Park
East Zion, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 4.7 miles, Half day
This 5 mile loop includes a wonderful view into remote Parunuweap canyon, and ends on top of Cockeye Falls.

The remote East side of Zion National Park presents a wonderland to the adventurous hiker. Unlike the main canyon, the East side contains a landscape of gradual slickrock and slot canyons. If a person has the proper skills (and footwear) the slickrock can lead to remote areas where few will ever venture. Cockeye Falls is one such hike. Starting...
Progeny Peak - Zion National Park
Progeny Peak - Zion National Park
East Zion, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 1.6 miles, 1-3 hours
Short but challenging summit hike. Includes the beautiful Two Pines Arch along the way.

Located in Zion National Park are massive monoliths of rock. Some peaks, like Angels Landing, can be reached by park maintained trails. Others, like Lady Mountain can be reached by unmaintained trails requiring technical knowledge. Most require the use of climbing gear and a lifetime of experience to reach the top. Of all the mountain tops in Zion,...
The Subway - Zion National Park
The Subway - Zion National Park
Zion National Park, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 4.0 miles, Half day
Long day hike to dinosaur tracks, keyhole falls and subway

Long day hike to dinosaur tracks, keyhole falls and subway. The subway is a pipe-like gorge. The trail is not maintained. The beginning is steep. The trail follows a creek. Hikers have to pass the creek a couple of times. In order to do the subway-trail hikers need a permission from the administration of Zion National Park
East Temple Saddle - Zion National Park
East Temple Saddle - Zion National Park
East Zion, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 3.1 miles, 1-3 hours
The East Temple Saddle route is a backcountry extension turning the Canyon Overlook trail into a loop.

One of the most popular hikes in Zion National Park is the Canyon Overlook Trail. This well designed and well protected trail allows even young children the chance to witness dizzying heights more common on the difficult trails in the park. From the Overlook, the East Temple sits to your right. It was named by John Wesley Powell and the summit resides...
Bartizan Arch - Cedar Breaks National Monument
Bartizan Arch - Cedar Breaks National Monument
Cedar Breaks National Monument, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 5.4 miles, Half day
A 2 mile round trip extension from Ramparts Trail. This Backcountry route includes the beautiful Shooting Star Waterfall

Located at 10,350 feet elevation, Cedar Breaks National Monument makes a nice reprieve from the summers heat found at Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon. Cedar Breaks is host to only two trails, the Ramparts Trail which includes Spectra Point and a circular 2 mile Alpine Pond Trail. The Bartizan Arch, a unique triple arch, rests at the western...
Mount Kinesava - Zion National Park
Mount Kinesava - Zion National Park
South Zion, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 8.1 miles, Full day
Inspiring summit ascent. Long difficult approach to the prominent peak beside West Temple. Petroglyphs.

Resting in the southern section of Zion National Park, where daytime summer temperatures climb into the triple digits, is Mount Kinesava. Native Americans named the peak after the mischievous Paiute God "Coyote God of the Canyon." Blamed for many misdeeds the peak still shows the petroglyphs written by those brave enough to make an ascent of this fitful...
Noah's Ark Trail - Dixie National Forest
Noah's Ark Trail - Dixie National Forest
Parowan, Utah, United States
 
Difficult: 3.0 miles, Half day
Three mile round trip hike on a maintained trail. Beautiful views of Noah's Ark and Vermillion Castle rock formations.

The origin of this namesake rock is as lost to history as the original Ark is lost to the world. It is presumed that much like the rock pinnacles of Zion National Park which were named by a traveling Methodist Minister who, on a whim, started naming the spires of Zion. Some early settler startled by the similarities of the shape started calling the...