Best hike in Zion National Park? – Backpacking the West Rim Trail

Best hike in Zion National Park? – Backpacking the West Rim Trail

We’ve been all over Zion National Park. We’ve been in the depths of Pine Creek Canyon and the peak of Angel’s Landing. The diversity is absolutely incredible, and it keeps drawing us back. But there aren’t that many backpacking options in Zion. Or are there? Yes, there is the famous Zion Narrows, but for the most part, they’re day trips.

So I did some research and found the Zion West Rim Trail. The first article I came across said it was the best hike in the park. That’s saying a lot. But I was intrigued, so I read on. The more I researched, the more it sounded like a must-do hike. So I figured out the permit system and got our permits.

The Zion West Rim trail can be done two ways; start at the Grotto and hike up Angel’s Landing….and then keep hiking up. Or, go up to Lava Point and hike in from there, going down Angel’s Landing at the end of your hike.

Down sounded better to me, so that was our itinerary.

First thing you need is a shuttle. We used Red Rock Shuttles:

We left our car at the Zion Visitor Center, hopped on the shuttle and were on our way. We’ve made this drive many times before. You leave the lower section of the park and get up into the pine trees. It’s absolutely gorgeous. And again, diverse.

We started our hike around 7AM from Lava Point. It’s maybe 5~6 miles on a mellow trail through the pines and, honestly, not that remarkable. And then you hit Potato Hollow and the views just open up. You have the white stone peaks of Zion, overlooking many of the technical canyons. It just makes me want to explore more and more of the park.

Soon enough, we got to our campsite. We chose Zion West Rim trail camp 2 because it was a) as close as you could get to the exit and b) by a fairly reliable spring. The other campsites looked fine, but camp 1 & 2 were protected from the wind and closer to the spring, so I recommend those if that’s up your alley.

The next day, the REAL fun begins as you descend down into the canyons. At first it’s the white rock of upper Zion, but eventually the Zion West Rim Trail gets down into the red rock.

And then, there it is. The bucket list Angel’s Landing trail. And it’s BELOW YOU. West Rim Trail brings you in for the most amazing views of the iconic Angel’s Landing…You will definitely feel accomplished as you walk past all the day hikers heading to the Angel’s Landing peak, knowing you slept nearly 1,500 feet above their goal.

That’s about it. The video will speak for itself. This was an amazing hike that got added to our yearly rotation.

Can’t wait to do it again.

Music by Epidemic Sound:

Black Hole – Tommy Ljungberg
Vapour – Osoku
Blue Skies Turning Red – Vulcan Peaks
All But Me (Luwaks Remix) – OTE
A New Sleep – Arden Forest
Oh My – Las Lunas
Dreamy – Megan Wofford
It’s a Beautiful World Out There – Nashional
Now We Do It Again – Duplex Heart

If you click on the links below – and especially if you buy from these links – I’ll get compensation. So that would be cool. No, I’m not sponsored by them, but I love the products.

Filmed on:

GoPro Hero 9 Black:

Canon EOS R:

Weebil S gimbal for your DSLR:

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