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kolob canyons reopens to visitors

Kolob Canyons Reopens to Visitors

by | Nov 30, 2023

There’s a lot to discover during a glamorous camping experience at Zion Wildflower Resort! Our resort is located just a short drive from the popular South Entrance of Zion National Park. This makes it easy to enjoy some of the park’s most popular features, like a ride on the Zion Canyon Shuttle, a hike to the peak of Angels Landing, or a picnic on the lawn of the Zion Lodge.

But what many first-time visitors to the best hotel Zion has to offer don’t realize is that there’s another section of Zion National Park. You won’t find a road or even signs directing you to this section when you visit Zion Canyon, which is where the Zion Lodge, the Zion Canyon Visitor Center, and many of the park’s most well-known trails and peaks are located. Instead, this other section of the park is located to the northwest of Zion Canyon, around a 45-minute drive away.

Kolob Canyon is the often-overlooked other half of Zion National Park. Here, you’ll find incredible views and challenging trails that rival those found in Zion Canyon—and far fewer crowds! But a rockslide in Kolob Canyons earlier this year brought visits to this beautiful canyon to a halt.

Rockfall Closes Kolob Canyon 

On Friday, May 12, 2023, tourists visiting Southern Utah captured an incredible natural event on camera. The group was making their way into Kolob Canyon when they captured a dramatic rockslide on the steep face of a cliff alongside them. In the video, rocks and debris tumbled down the rock face, sending a cloud of dust skyward.

No one was injured in the rockslide. However, it did cause significant damage to the main road through the area, Kolob Canyons Road. The road was closed, and with it, much of Kolob Canyons. It would remain closed throughout the busy summer season, and into the fall.

The National Park Service launched a project to repair the damage. They first had to excavate the rocks and remove any unstable materials. The road’s base was increased to a depth of eight feet with structural cloth, compacted soil, and geo-grid to reinforce and strengthen the road. Then, they repaved more than 6,000 square feet of damaged pavement. They also installed new ditches, gutters, and curbs to improve drainage on the roadways. 

Finally, on November 29, 2023, Kolob Canyon Road reopened. 

Visiting Kolob Canyons During Your Glamorous Camping Adventure

Kolob Canyons is just a 30-minute drive from Zion Wildflower Resort. This makes it easy to explore this beautiful section of the park during your glamorous camping experience.

The Kolob Canyons Visitor Center

Start with a stop by the Kolob Canyons Visitor Center. Here, you can talk to a ranger and get trail recommendations. This is also where you’ll pay the park’s entrance fee. If you’ve already purchased an entrance pass for Zion at the Zion Canyon South Entrance, you can use this pass to enter Kolob Canyon as well. You can also present a valid national park annual pass.

What to Do in Kolob Canyons

After stopping at the Visitor Center, take a cruise on Kolob Canyons Road to enjoy your first glimpse of this beautiful section of the park. The road is just five miles long, but it offers stunning views of Kolob Canyon’s crimson canyons. Along this road, you’ll also find a variety of scenic viewpoints and trailheads.

Unlike Zion’s Lower Canyon, Kolob Canyons does not have a shuttle system. This means that visitors can drive their personal vehicles and park in designated parking lots to access trailheads and overlooks.

One of the most popular things to do in Kolob Canyons is to go hiking. This section of the park is home to some 20 miles of hiking trails. This includes a mix of short, easy trails that are family-friendly, as well as more challenging trails.

One great trail to start with is Timber Creek Trail. This trail is located about two miles past the Kolob Canyons Visitor Center. It’s just a one-mile round-trip, and relatively flat. You’ll follow the ridgeline to a small peak, and enjoy incredible views of Timber Creek, the Pine Valley Mountains, and Kolob Terrace.

Taylor Creek Trail is one of the best hikes in all of Zion National Park, though it’s often overlooked because of its location in Kolob Canyons. The trail is five miles roundtrip and rated moderately difficult. On this trail, you’ll enjoy views of a landmark you won’t find in the Lower Canyon; a natural arch. Double Arch Alcove is a cave-like formation formed over thousands of years due to flash flooding. Also on this trail, you’ll pass two historic cabins, built in the early 1900s before the national park was formed. If you didn’t get a pass for Angels Landing during your glamorous camping adventure, this trail is another great alternative.

Planning a Glamorous Camping Adventure

If you’re looking for beautiful views, great hiking trails, and plenty of open wilderness, a visit to Kolob Canyons is a must during your glamorous camping adventure.

Because of its more remote location and higher elevation, Kolob Canyon often closes during the winter months due to snow and ice. While the section of the park is currently open, if you’re dreaming of visiting Kolob Canyons during your stay at Zion Wildflower Resort, you’ll want to plan for a spring visit. Our Zion cabins and glamping tents are open all year long, making it easy to plan a visit no matter when you like to travel.

Ready to experience Kolob Canyon for yourself? Book your next stay at Zion Wildflower Resort today!

Wildflower Blog

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