Contact: David Eaker, 435-772-7811
Contact: Cody Cole, 435-772-7826
Starting today, Zion National Park will reopen most of the backcountry areas in the park including The Narrows and Orderville Canyon. Park officials issued an emergency closure of all its backcountry areas on July 18 for visitor safety due to the danger from wildfires burning in the park. These fires are now contained and pose no direct threat to visitors. There is an increased risk of flash flooding though, due to the loss of vegetation in the burned area and the prediction of possible thunderstorms through this week. The West Rim Trail, which passes through one of the fire areas, remains closed along with all canyons that are accessed by the trail including Heaps, Behunin and Imlay.
Trails and canyons still temporarily CLOSED in Zion National Park
Visitors should be aware that recent rains and the prediction of more in the following days have increased the potential of flash floods, especially in areas where the fires have burned. Hiking The Narrows and other canyons in the park can be dangerous and should not be underestimated. Flash floods, with strong currents and possible debris in the water from the fires, present real dangers that can be life-threatening. Good planning, proper equipment and sound judgment are essential for a safe and successful trip. Permits are required for hiking the Narrows from Chamberlain’s Ranch down and for most other canyon routes in the park. Backcountry users should check at park visitor centers for weather forecasts and flash flood predictions before starting their hikes.
The two fires in the Dakota Hill Fire Complex were fully contained on Sunday, July 29. Some smoke may still be visible from areas within the fire perimeter as it burns out some of the larger fuels. Hikers in The Narrows and Orderville Canyon may occasionally smell smoke during their hikes. The remaining closed trails and canyons in the park will reopen as soon as park officials feel the danger from the fire has been eliminated.
Last updated: February 24, 2015