Overview: This is a strenuous hike to the highest point in Zion National Park. You look down on Angels Landing and have a sweeping vista of the main canyon that makes up Zion. It is a stunning view. Tips: Bring plenty of water—preferably a backpack with a water reservoir—and some protein bars or other snack that you can enjoy at the Point. I did this hike at the end of September 2010. It was quite chilly in the morning and the wind was blowing very hard. I wore shorts and had layered my upper body. By the time I was at Observation Point, I was glad I wore my shorts and that I had on a short sleeve shirt under the layering. Hiking boots are good to use, but I did see people walking in sneakers. With an 8 mile hike, I think boots are almost a pre-requisite. I don't like hiking poles, but for those of you that do, I recommend you bring them along. Cell coverage in non-existent in much of Zion. When you are at the Point and in the higher elevations, you should have service. I have put a link to my EveryTrail trip for Observation Point so you can download the GPX coordinates. They really aren't needed. The trail is well marked and is quite obvious.
Lots of folks will debate between this and Angel's landing. I see no reason to, as both offer beautiful unique views of the canyon. Observation Point takes you much higher above the canyon than Angel's Landing does, though it does not offer the unique hiking experience of Angel's Landing.
Essentially, look at it this way: Observation point is a great hike to take if your fear of heights keeps you away from Angel's landing.
It's a longer hike, but there are some beautiful views along the way, particularly Echo Canyon, which you can explore quite easily without having to wander to far from the trail.
Everyone is always talking about Angel's Landing, but this hike is easier and less crowded. It's less steep, rather. Don't let the "strenuous" or "difficult" ratings throw you, it's doable, but take your time and know your limits. It's like 8 miles round trip, should take about half a day, maybe more, maybe less. The view at the top, I think, also beats Angels Landing any day. So pretty.
Did 6 parks including Grand Canyon, Brice Canyon and Yosemite National Park. The best was clearly Zion. I did a combination of Observation Point and the Hidden Canyon, which is best done on the way down from the Observation Point.
The views are amazing!
And the Hidden Canyon is a true gem. Specially if you make it to the end of the unmaintained trail. You will have to free climb some larger rocks and other obstacles but it’s absolutely feasible and definitely worth the hassle.
This place is stunning!! Park as soon as you exit the tunnel. Very little parking though. You cross the street and start the little hike. Its short and sweet, maybe 2 miles one way. I saw Kids, parents and grandparents hiking it. Def recommend it.
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Observation Point - Zion National Park
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