Hidden Canyon hike in Zion

Originally we had planned to head to Bryce in the morning, but Mark really wanted to hike to Hidden Canyon. So, as quickly as we could, we loaded up, checked out of our motel, and headed for the Zion visitor’s center to board the shuttle.

The trailhead at Weeping Wall serves Hidden Canyon, the East Rim, and Observation Point. The trail heads up almost immediately and soon begins switchbacking as the canyon wall becomes steeper. The trail is excellent—it has been paved in a fashion so that it is relatively smooth. After gaining a few hundred feet in elevation, the trail junction to Hidden Canyon is reached.

At this point the trail becomes rougher and narrower. In a few spots with significant exposure, chains have been installed to hang on to. One of the first rough spots is traversing a narrow chute which was still packed with snow. Karen and I had come this far a few years ago, and turned around at this point. There wasn’t any snow then—it was just an uncomfortable, off-camber sand-covered rock trail. We don’t regret that decision because we then chose to head up to the east rim and Observation Point. By the way, the girls (6 and 8 years old) showed no fear. I do have a queasiness about heights, but managed OK by just concentrating on where my feet went on the trail in front of me. I didn’t spend a lot of time gazing over the edge.

Hidden Canyon trail

After wrapping around the cliff face, the trail finally enters Hidden Canyon where except for a couple of minor obstructions, the trail is an easy, flat walk. Eventually the canyon becomes choked with boulders, and while I suppose one could scramble further up the canyon, we did not.

By the time we got back to the visitor center, we realized we should eat dinner. For a converted gas station, the Whiptail Grill was quite good. Sitting outside, the view is magnificent, but it was too breezy to be totally enjoyable.

Finally, we got on the road eastbound to Escalante and did not arrive until after 9:30 pm. This was tough on the kids, but the excitement and accomplishment of the hike made it worth it.

Zion Hidden Canyon photo gallery

1 comment to Hidden Canyon hike in Zion

  • What a wonderful place! Great photos too. And so nice to be able to share with children like that. I’m pretty sure my wife would freak out if I tried to bring our daughter on trails remotely like those… 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

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