Observation Point in Zion National Park

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Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point is one of our top favorite picks from our time in Zion National Park. The views are incredibly stunning in every direction, and there’s a few interesting attractions along the way to the top as well. This trail is also perfect for those who want similar views to the popular Angel’s Landing hike without the threat of a 1,000′ drop off.

That’s not to say there aren’t drop offs on this hike, but you’re not so close to them. The trail is quite wide wherever there’s a drop so it’s easy to stay on the inside, far away from the edge. This trail is also considered one of the more strenuous hikes in the park, and I can see why with the significant elevation gain. There’s also the element of the sun, whenever you go to Zion be sure to start early because that dessert sun can really get to you.

We visited in late October and it was still cooking hot on a few days, but then again we’re Northerner’s, so neither one of us handles the heat all that well. Regardless of what you’re used to, the temperatures here soar over 100ºF regularly, and you can quickly become dehydrated, so it’s super important to carry even more water than you normally would. We found ourselves drinking almost twice as much water while hiking in Utah than we would normally drink while hiking in Montana!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point starts from the Weeping Rock trailhead which is the 7th shuttle stop just before the Temple of Sinawava and the entrance to the Narrows. The trail gains 2,100′ over 4 miles to the lookout point. There are a few precious spots of shade when you get to the top that you might be able to eat your lunch in if you get there early enough.

You can also hike to the Weeping Rock and Hidden Canyon all from this same trailhead, and we’ll talk about both of them in greater detail in further posts. If you’re a really (emphasis here) strong hiker, you can probably do all 3 in 1 day if it isn’t the heat of summer. Hidden Canyon is a wild card because there’s no exact distance it’s just as far as you’re comfortable scrambling, and I do mean scrambling, it’s hand’s on canyoneering that gets more serious the further you progress. But if you’re only doing a small amount of Hidden Canyon, (we spent about 2 1/2 hours in there) you can definitely squeeze them all in, especially if you’re on a tight time schedule.

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

One of the parts of this hike I really enjoyed was the short stretch of canyon that you go through, which was one feature I thought set this hike above even Angle’s Landing for overall variety. Although that being said, you can’t beat Angle’s Landing for sheer amazing views if you don’t have problems with heights. Can you tell I can’t even make up my mind which hike I loved the best because they were so incredible!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Right about here we stopped to set up for a photo and Tyler stepped to the edge of the trail to make room for some passing hikers, only to step right into a cactus completely by accident, (obviously). Let me tell you what, you want to be careful about those little guys lurking right next to the trail. Once they offload their little stickers into the side of your barefoot minimalist shoes (um… ouch!), it’s really hard to get them all back out!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

There were a couple of things new to us hiking in Zion, for one, most of the trails have sections that have been paved to help with erosion. This can really get to your knees, especially when you’re doing more than one hike per day. The other thing was all the sand, sometimes you were ‘hiking’ in 3-4 inches of sand which wears you out over time. The sand is powder fine, and I’m still trying to get it out of my shoes!

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

From the lookout point, you can see Angle’s Landing which is the curving bit of rock jutting into the canyon on the far left side of the above photo.

Observation Point in Zion National Park | Get Inspired Everyday!

And just in closing, I was wondering if you’ve ever been hiking in Utah? We loved our time there so much we can’t wait to plan another trip, and we’re looking for recommendations.

4 thoughts on “Observation Point in Zion National Park”

  1. Did the Observation trail years ago. My favorite view. Was almost blown off the edge as you approach the top. The trail is not as wide there as you make it sound. Scared the crap out of me. My favorite section was where you complete the initial switch backs and cut through the rock to emerge in the back section that takes you around and then back to the left toward the last trail section to the summit. Absolutely LOVE Zion! Especially the northeastern section that you can only get to by driving out the Virgin River entrance, heading west and then north along a looong winding road up to that area. Zion is one of those parks that is a wonderful surprise around every corner!

    Reply
    • The wind does make a decently wide trail not so wide for sure! I was just comparing the trail to Angel’s Landing where the trail is just inches at points, where you can get similar views with this hike enjoying a 2+ feet of trail. We loved Zion too, so much to see and we would absolutely love to go back and explore some of the different trails we didn’t have time to hike. That section through the canyon winding around on this hike is so beautiful, would love to do it again!

      Reply
    • The great thing about Zion is that there’s so many great trails that are 8 miles or less which is a little easier going than some of the National Parks we’ve been to. I’ll be posting over the winter about a few hikes that are only a couple miles where the views are unbelievable, so there’s lots to do even if you’re not a big hiker!

      Reply

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