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Checkerboard Mesa

Zion-Mount Carmel Hwy., 1 mi west of the East Entrance, Zion National Park, UT
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Type: Geologic Formations, Mountains
Activities: Hiking, Watching sunrise/sunset
Description: Mesa country that is laid out in a checkerboard pattern and is a photographer's delight.
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27 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Ubud
Top Contributor
81 reviews 81 reviews
42 attraction reviews
64 helpful votes 64 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2013

Checkerboard Mesa is an iconic part of the Zion experience, whether your are entering or leaving from the east, and is worth stopping at for a quick look. The small parking area near it is a good place to take a quick view and shoot a few photos is you are short on time however its worth getting out and... More

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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
14 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

I see there are mixed reviews but to me Checkerboard Mesa is almost iconic for the park, perhaps because it is included in many guides and geology textbooks. Furthermore, the character of the scenery to the east of the tunnel has smaller details with the weathering accentuating the ancient sloped dune beds in the sandstone and smaller erosional features. This... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Loveland, Colorado
Top Contributor
183 reviews 183 reviews
61 attraction reviews
774 helpful votes 774 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2013

These Mesas are one of my favorite landforms in Zion National Park. They are not the most majestic or mammoth, but I think they are the most interesting. The cracking in the rocks is caused by the slowly changing pressures as each layer is buried and exhumed. The colors, when viewed with the other pinks and the green trees are... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 4
Avon, Ohio
Top Contributor
658 reviews 658 reviews
438 attraction reviews
769 helpful votes 769 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

The Checkerboard Mesa is just inside the eastern entrance of Zion NP and will be the first attraction you reach arriving from the east or the last as you leave for points east. In either case, it is worth a short stop to see the unusual erosion pattern giving this mesa its name and which even geologists do not fully... More

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Raleigh, North Carolina
Top Contributor
450 reviews 450 reviews
227 attraction reviews
210 helpful votes 210 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

This is good for a quick photo if you are driving by but I would not drive out there just to see this. If driving on the Zion-Mount Carmel highway, which I highly recommend, this does not take much time to see.

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Santa Clara, Utah
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
11 attraction reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

It is a large sandstone hill with some cracks running up and down and across. It mackes a nice photo stop.

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Lake Forest, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2012

You can drive by this and take a look. No reason to stop and take a picture. Looks cool but you will see much better rock formations in the canyon and narrows. Cool to see if you dont pland on hiking at all.

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Millers Creek, North Carolina
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
9 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2012

The checkerboard mesa was interesting. There is a pull off area to see the way the checkerboard is formed into the mountain. Very interesting.

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Sydney, Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
33 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2012

Remarkable viewpoint to the east of the Tunnel. It's a tough climb that despite appearences definitely needs a rope and gear as it steepens towards the top. We then found some side canyons away frm the carpark where again it was very easy to get away from other tourists.

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Boulder, Colorado
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
32 attraction reviews
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2012

Nice to see but there are many places in park to see the same thing. I didn't like the parking area.

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