This was a two day one night backbacking trip. We parked our car at canyon junction and hitchhiked out to the east entrance of the park. Hitchhiking is legal within Zion park’s boundaries, but it took about an hour until we got a lift for the two of us, and our gear.
We started the east rim trail from the east entrance of the park. The east rim starts out very easy with gradual climbs. The first highlight you will hit is Jolley Gulch. It’s a very nice view, and will give you a good taste of the canyon’s to come. We continued trek until we came to the branch to go off and view Deertrap and Cable Mountains. We decided to explore these two mountains and setup camp not too far from the fork between Deertrap and Cable Mountains.
After setting up camp we hiked out to Deertrap Mountain, this hike was a race against the sun. We knew the sun was setting soon, and we wished to avoid hiking back in the dark. As a result we had to turn around a little less than a mile before the end of the trail. We did make it back to camp just a little after the sun had set, so it was good that we turned around when we did. The views from Deertrap Mountain were okay, nothing fantastic, maybe it would have been better if we made it to the end, but there were a lot of tree’s blocking the views of nearby mountains.
The next morning we hiked out to Cable Mountain. When you get to the end of the trail you get a spectacular view of Zion canyon. On top of Cable you will see the remains of a cable works device that was used to lower tree’s down to the canyon floor. If you look down from Cable Mountain you will see the set of switch backs. These are the same switch backs we exited the east rim trail later on in the day.
After Cable Mountain we returned to our camp site, packed up, and continue our hike. The east rim trail continued on into Echo Canyon. Climbing down and around Echo Canyon is a real treat. The canyon walls and views allow for a fantastic end to the hike.
As we were exiting out onto Zion Canyon, we could look back up and see the cable works on top of Cable Mountain, a brief reminder of where we were earlier in the day. Overall a great hike with some fantastic views.
If you are going to Hitchhike out to the east entrance, give your self at least an hour to wait for a ride.
Zion, Deertrap, Cable, East Rim, Echo Canyon