Protected within Zion National Park’s 229 square miles (593.1 km) is a spectacular cliff-and-canyon landscape and wilderness full of the unexpected including the world’s largest arch – Kolob Arch – with a span that measures 310 feet (94.5 m).
Wildlife such as mule deer, golden eagles, and mountain lions, also inhabit the Park. Formerly “Mukuntuweap National Monument” opening on July 31, 1909; incorporated in Zion National Monument March 18, 1918; established as a national park on Nov. 19, 1919. The Zion Natural History Association (ZNHA) is also a great source of information about the park.
Zion National Park is like the set of a movie that’s so grand you know it’s fake, but you don’t care because it’s delicious to look at; the kind of flick where the art director was given carte blanche and didn’t worry about believability. Something campy about chiseled space-canyoneers colonizing the loveliest side of the Red Planet.
Visit Zion National Park
Zion National Park is very near St. George, Utah and the well known Tuacahn Amphitheater. Don’t miss the chance to see a professional broadway style show in an unforgettable setting. Tuacahn is an absolute must see on your next visit to Southern Utah! There is so much to do in beautiful and sunny southern Utah. Only 90 minutes from Las Vegas makes getting here a breeze, and knowing that there are over 300 days of sunshine each year makes staying here.
From three miles up, the Zion National Park map looks like a naughty geometry student’s desk after protractor unit. The crosshatch of canyons scratched in this step of the Grand Staircase makes for a hundred trails in all kinds of contexts, at all levels of difficulty. To some, “hiking” means walking along sidewalk-grade paths into pretty nature. To others, a claustrophobic slot canyon to a chain-anchored ascent of a vertiginous pinnacle is a “hike.” Zion is for hikers.
Campgrounds in Zion National Park
Zion National Park has three campgrounds. South and Watchman Campgrounds are in Zion Canyon. The Lava Point Campground is about a 1-hour drive from Zion Canyon on the Kolob Terrace Road. There are no campgrounds in Kolob Canyons. Camping is permitted in designated campsites, but not in pullouts or parking lots. Camping is popular; all campgrounds are often full by noon on weekdays and in the morning on weekends. From mid-March through November the campgrounds are full almost every night. Reservations at Watchman Campground (see below) are recommended if you would like to guarantee a camping spot. If you are unable to make a reservation, the earlier in the day you arrive, the better your chance of getting a campsite.
Zion Canyon Campgrounds
Loop A in Watchman Campground will be closed starting October 1, 2016 for construction. Loop A will re-open for reservations in the 2017 season.
South Campground and Watchman Campground are near the south entrance at Springdale. This part of the park is desert. There are few trees to provide relief from the heat. Some campsites get shade for part of the day, but many get no shade at all. Summer temperatures exceed 95°F (35°C) and lows rarely dip below 65°F (18°C); staying cool is a challenge. Remember these temperatures and the possibility of a sunny campsite when planning. The Virgin River runs along the edge of each campground; there are a few riverside campsites.
Park Weather Information
All campsites are drive-up and allow a maximum of two vehicles. Only one RV or trailer is allowed. Any RV including motorhomes, cabover campers and camper vans, or any trailer including 5th wheels, pop-up campers, and cargo or boat trailers are vehicles and count toward the limit. Each campground has overflow parking for excess vehicles. Each campsite allows a maximum of six people and three tents; plan accordingly. Check out time is 11:00 a.m.
Comfort stations provide flush toilets, cold running drinkable water, and trash containers, but no showers or electrical outlets. Each campsite has a picnic table and fire pit with attached grill. Quiet hours are 10:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. Pets are allowed on a leash no longer than six feet. Hiking in the park with pets is allowed only on the roads and Pa’rus Trail.