Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Pa'rus Trail (Zion National Park)

The Pa'rus Hiking Trail in Zion National Park is fun easy hike along the Virgin River that offers amazing sights of the surrounding mountains, including The Watchman. During our trip to Zion National Park, Ashley and I had the chance to hike the Pa'rus Trail at sunset.  The Pa'rus Hiking Trail in Zion National Park begins/ends at the Zion Visitor Center or begins/ends at the beginning of the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive where it intersects with highway 9. This hike in Zion National Park is one the whole family can do together and it is one of the best places to see a sunset in Zion National Park as you can see the ever changing colors on the canyon walls around you. For more pictures make sure to check out our Facebook Page.

Directions to Trailhead: Zion National Park is located just outside of St. George, Utah. To get from California to Zion National Park take the 15 freeway to St. George Utah. There you will take state highway 9 all the way to Zion National Park. The trailhead for the Pa'rus Hiking Trail is located at the either the Zion Visitor, which is right near the western entrance to the park or where the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive intersects with highway 9.

Description of Hike: This is an out an back hike on a paved surface. The hike along the Pa'rus Trail in Zion National Park is an easy hike with an approximate elevation gain of 50 feet and a roundtrip mileage of approximately 3.5 miles. The trail is well maintained by the National Park Service and you are likely to see others while on this hike in Zion National Park. This trail begins/ends at the Zion Visitor Center (The South Campground) or begins/ends at the beginning of the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive where it intersects with highway 9 (Canyon Junction). 

Further Thoughts: Ashley and I enjoyed our hike on the Pa'rus Trail as it was recommended as a great sunset hike, by a park ranger. We saw other hikers while out on the Pa'rus Trail as well as many photographers looking to capture that spectacular shot of sunset in Zion National Park. There is a relaxing atmosphere to the hike on the Pa'rus Trail as it follows alongside the Virgin River for a majority of the hike. Additionally, you can get excellent photographs of Watchman Mountain in Zion National Park while Hiking on the Pa'rus trail. This trail is suitable for bicycles as well, so there is a chance you will also see bicyclists while on this trail. 

Zion National Park is home to 69 species of mammals, 208 birds, 29 reptiles, 6 amphibians, and 9 different fish species. Commonly seen animals include mule deer, lizards, and many species of birds. We saw many deer while at Zion National Park as well as a ring tail cat while hiking in the evening near Zion Lodge. We did see several deer while hiking on the Pa'rus trail. Bottom-line is make sure to bring your camera with you while hiking here, as you have a great chance of seeing wildlife.

Zion National Park is a beautiful place that is a hikers paradise. It offers a wide range of trails from easy to very strenuous. Ashley and I are looking forward to our next visit to Zion National Park. We stayed at the Zion Lodge which we also highly recommend to visitors looking to spend quality time at Zion National Park. Zion Lodge is located along Zion Canyon Scenic Drive (Floor of the Valley Road) in the heart of Zion Canyon.

Rating:  Elevation Gain: 50 ft. (Easy), Distance: 3.5 Mile Roundtrip (Easy). 

Time to Complete Hike: 1.5 - 2 hours.


Pa'rus Trail (This Post)

View Pa'rus Trail in a larger map

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Ashley and I encourage and welcome our readers to submit comments about their experiences on the trails we have posted on our blog or about their own hiking experiences in general.