We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Toronto/Ottawa
posts: 20
reviews: 48
Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

My husband and I are on a really tight schedule during a trip to Vegas. We are planning to do ZNP as a day trip. Given our jet lag and past performance, I expect we'll hit the road around 6am, Vegas time. That would put us at Zion at 10am, right?

I don't know what the conditions and lighting are like, but I was thinking we could leave ZNP to return to Vegas as late as 5 or 6pm (to be back in Vegas around 8-9 pm).

Here's a description of us and what we're expecting:

*Two adults, love to drive and see beautiful things, LOVE to take beautiful pictures.

*Enjoy easy to moderate hikes, but understand we may not have too much time for that in a day trip to Zion. One short one might be nice, though….

Given these things, I was wondering what you think of this day trip. Feasible? What would you recommend we do as an itinerary in the park? With just one day and a tight schedule, what should we skip (recognizing that it's all awesome and NOT to be missed….we'll still have to make some tough choices!)

Thanks

Bedford,U.K
posts: 770
reviews: 5
1. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Put it this way, if it was me taking a guest to show Zion for a day trip, then as much bang for the buck is what id try to achieve.

Not sure when you're going but either a shuttle or drive top to bottom of the drive to see the lay of the valley is a must.

Personally i'd take them up to Scout Lookout and get them up out of the valley floor and take a peek down. If your adventurous enough, carry on to Angels Landing for an unforgetable experience. The view will be remembered for a lifetime.

Probably a peek at Weeping Rock is on the cards.

Even if you dont do a trail, a day visit to soak up the environs is well worth it.

..........wish i could make a day trip out of it.

Encinitas...
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park, Joshua Tree National Park
posts: 13,347
reviews: 9
2. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

The shuttle starts March 30. Until then, you can drive your car into the canyon.

I would drive to the end of the canyon and do the Riverside walk to the start of the Narrows.

Then drive back down canyon,stopping at all the shuttle stops/trailheads.Big Bend, Weeping Rock to do the short walk to see Weeping Rock,The Grotto.The Lodge, Court of the Patriarchs...

At the Grotto, you could take a few hours and hike to Scouts Lookout or if you have no issues with heights and drops, Angels Landing.

I would want to see the Emerald Pools.

At some point you need to drive out thru the tunnel to the east side of the park. Do the Canyon Overlook trail just east of the tunnel. Its one of the best ways to see the canyon from above without a steep hike out of the canyon.Then continue out to Checkerboard Mesa and turn around.

As I said in your PM, stay in Springdale for sunset. The restaurants(almost all)have incredible views of the canyon walls from an outdoor patio or inside. The drive back to Vegas is really easy(mostly interstate)and you gain an hour going back.

Toronto/Ottawa
posts: 20
reviews: 48
3. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Dez40,

Thanks for your reply. I was wondering if you could give me an estimate of how long we'd need to do each of the hikes/visits you're suggesting. Given that we'd just have the day, we likely wouldn't be able to do everything fully, but given that we're most interested in easy/moderate hikes and walks, and taking lots of nice pictures, how long do you think each would take?

Encinitas...
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park, Joshua Tree National Park
posts: 13,347
reviews: 9
4. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

The Riverside walk is about 2 miles r/t from the Temple of Sinawava parking area to the end and back. Figure1.5 hours.

Weeping Rock will take about 10-15 minutes.

Angels Landing takes about 4 hours. Cut that about in half if just going to Scouts Lookout.

Lower Emerald Pool takes about an hour.

Canyon Overlook trail takes about an hour.

Add in some time for just staring in amazement and taking pictures.

When you arrive at the park, they give you a map with hiking travel times and difficulty of hikes.

Kipling. SK
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park
posts: 3,584
reviews: 97
5. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

West rim trail to Scouts Lookout would be the most strenuous of all hikes mentioned, due to the gain of elevation. The tradeoff is that it offers the best of the views.

Riverside Walk, Canyon Overlook, and Lower Emerald pools are the essential hikes in Zion that rank in the Easy category,IMO

Any additional questions, the forum members will help

Austin, Texas
posts: 1
6. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Does the park supply shuttles all day or how is best to see it?

thanks!

Kipling. SK
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park
posts: 3,584
reviews: 97
7. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

@ pickbry0n

The park shuttles run roughly during the daylight hours, and in all seasons except late fall and most of winter. You can expect a shuttle to arrive at a stop every 10-15 minutes. The shuttle runs from the visitor center to the temple of sinawava, and then back again in a loop>> nps.gov/zion/planyourvisit/shuttle-system.htm

Fairhope, Alabama
posts: 227
reviews: 17
8. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Spokesmom, I hope you don't mind if I piggyback your thread.

We're also thinking about doing a one day trip from Vegas the first week in November and I have a few questions.

- we'll be driving a car do we need 4 wheel drive or an SUV?

- is there a place where we can park and take a shuttle to view the park? if no shuttle, which parking lot should we head to first for the best hike? Wife and I hiked Glacier NP and lots filled up quickly.

- what kind of weather can we expect that time of year?

Thanks!

Kipling. SK
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park
posts: 3,584
reviews: 97
9. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

@mobilebarna

The route to Zion is via I-15 and SR9 to Zion's SW entrance. After you pass La Verkin on SR9(near Hurricane), then the route you will take is mostly flat to visit the main canyon of Zion. However, SR 9 from the main canyon up to the Zion/Mt carmel Tunnel involves some steep grades and switchbacks. Zion sits on the edge of the same desert that Las vegas is situated in, so heavy accumulations of snow in Nov is not very likely. If there does happen to be widespread snow in the forecast for the day you want to travel, travelling the I-15 through the Virgin River Gorge(between Mesquite and St George)is not a good idea, IMO. So if the weather is favorable, a car is suitable to visit Zion all year round.

The park shuttle ends on November the 3rd, but is stated to be running on the weekends through to the end of November. If you arrive when the shuttle is not running, the Grotto parking lot(trailheads for Kayenta/West Rim trail/Scouts Lookout/Angel's landing is usually packed solid by midday. If the shuttle is running, you park at the large parking lot by the visitor center/Parus Trail/south campground.

Normal high/low according to park statistics(in Springdale and the main canyon) is 65/35 F. It can be cooler in the higher portions of the park, such as the East Mesa and Kolob Canyons

Further info can be seen and answered fro m the current park newspaper(which you receive when you arrive at the park)>> nps.gov/zion/…ZionFallMG2013.pdf

Uden, The...
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
posts: 53,631
reviews: 42
10. Re: Packed one-day visit from Vegas??

Yes, any car will do. No need for awd or SUV.