Heading to Utah? Check out this epic list of the Best Hikes in Utah before you go!
Planning a trip to Utah? If you’re a hiking aficionado, you’re in luck! From narrow slow canyons to thundering waterfalls, snow capped mountains and sandstone arches, there are so many great hikes and outdoor adventures in the state.
This ultimate list of the 30 Best Hikes in Utah will show you both popular and off the beaten path hikes. From the iconic national parks, to the equally impressive hidden gems, there really is something for everyone! There’s also a variety of both short and long, easy and strenuous hikes. No matter what you’re comfortable with, there’s a great hike awaiting you1
So, ready to plan your Utah hiking trip? Keep reading to find out more…
Best Hikes in Utah
#1: Buckskin Gulch, Utah/Arizona
Does hiking the world’s longest slot canyon interest you? If so, you need to hike through Buckskin Gulch, which straddles the Utah and Arizona state line! Roughly halfway between Page and Kanab, then a few miles down a dirt road, getting here isn’t too hard. At over 14 miles long, this epic slot canyon will keep you occupied for a very long time!
Just be sure to call ahead to the local ranger station about the weather, and keep an eye out. As beautiful as slot canyons may be, they can be equally as dangerous during flash floods.
#2: Wire Pass, Utah/Arizona
The trailhead for Wire Pass slot canyon is just 4 miles south of Buckskin Gulch. In fact, the Wire Pass slot canyon actually dead ends into Buckskin Gulch slot canyon as well! The main difference is, Wire Pass is shorter but overall narrower and arguably the more beautiful of the two to visit.
#3: Cinder Cone Trail, Snow Canyon
This 1.7 mile hike has 500 feet in elevation gain, and will take you to the top of a cinder cone volcano (surprise!). Seriously though, if you’re looking to see a little more than the red sandstone terrain that southern Utah is so famous for, then you’ll enjoy this hike right outside of St George. If you’re planning a road trip from Las Vegas up into Utah, you’ll drive right by here.
#4: The Narrows, Zion
Without a shadow of a doubt, the Narrows in Zion National Park is probably one of the most epic hikes on this list! You can hike for as little as one mile out and back on the paved Riverwalk, or continue for miles up the icy cold waters of the Virgin River through towering sandstone canyon walls. Be sure to wear clothes you don’t care about, and old tennis shoes/water shoes so you can navigate over the smooth rocks in the river!
#5: Angel’s Landing, Zion
Another epic entry on this list is Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park. After ascending switchbacks on the canyon walls, and hiking up a narrow ridge-line, you’ll find yourself at an epic vantage point with views up and down Zion Canyon.
#6: Hidden Canyon, Zion
Yet another slot canyon to make this list (they’re plentiful in southern Utah) is Hidden Canyon. The 2.4 mile hike starts at the same tram stop as Angel’s Landing. You’ll ascend a steep climb up the canyon walls, with chains and all, before reaching the cool shaded canyon.
#7: Emerald Pools, Zion
Zion’s Emerald Pools hike is by far one of my favorite in the park, along with the Narrows. Be sure to hike this trail in Spring, so you can see the waterfalls in all their glory!
#8: Pa’rus Trail, Zion
This easy paved trail on the canyon floor of Zion is an excellent introductory to the park. For instance, if you drove up from Las Vegas, checked into your hotel and campground, and had an evening to spare, I would recommend this trail for people of all ages. Plus, you can also take your dog along!
Related: Zion National Park Hikes
#9: The Overlook Trail, Zion
Zion’s Overlook Trail is an easy hike that will showcase epic views over the Western portion of Zion Canyon. You’ll see them windows of Zion-Mt Carmel Tunnel carved into the cliff face, numerous towering sandstone monuments, and the highway as it switchbacks down the canyon walls.
#10: Pink Ledges Trail, Red Canyon
This short 0.7 mile hike will showcase some hoodoos in Red Rock Canyon, near Bryce Canyon. This is an excellent introductory trail to acclimate to the very high elevation in the area! You’ll drive right through Red Canyon if driving from Zion to Bryce.
#11: Rim Trail, Bryce Canyon
Bryce Canyon’s Rim Trail runs above the hoodoo amphitheaters for 5.5 miles, offering beautiful sunrise views and connecting various hiking trails. It starts at Fairlyland Point in the North and ends at Bryce Point in the South. Do beware, despite being a ‘Rim’ trail, it’s not very flat. You’ll lose or gain a couple hundred feet of elevation depending on which direction you go!
#12: Fairyland Loop, Bryce Canyon
This 6-mile hike showcases Bryce Canyon without the crowds. Not joking, I’ve hiked the entire 6 miles of this hike while seeing 20 or less people. To say it’s the hidden gem of Bryce is an understatement! You’ll see epic hoodoos, arches, and more along the way! Be sure to take plenty of water and snacks in your backpack.
#13: Navajo Loop – Queen’s Garden, Bryce Canyon
This is by and far my favorite hike in Bryce Canyon! At approximately 3 miles in length, it isn’t too long, although you will descend/ascend several hundred feet in elevation. Start of by descending into Wall Street, a slot canyon of sorts in the orange ‘hoodoos’ (rock formations), before slowly ascending the gradual Queen’s Garden Trail which offers excellent views. All around, you can’t go wrong with this hike!
#14: Mossy Cave Trail, Bryce Canyon
Right outside of Bryce Canyon is Mossy Cave Trail. A short 0.8 mile hike will crisscross a creek on metal bridges bringing you into the view of a lovely little waterfall. Continue up the trail to mossy cave, which as the name suggests, is a large, damp overhang with lots of moss!
All around, this is an excellent little hike. I would absolutely recommend it for families with kids.
Related: Bryce Canyon Travel Tips
#15: Bristlecone Loop, Bryce Canyon National Park
If seeing some of the oldest trees in the world interests you, then you need to hike the short and easy Bristlecone Loop in Bryce Canyon! At just 1 mile in length, this trail may not seem like much. But along the way you’ll see both 1,800 year old bristlecone pine trails and epic views over the Four Corners region.
#16: Grand Parade Trail, Kodachrome Basin State Park
This small park near Bryce Canyon is home to some of Utah’s strangest terrain. There are several trails that wind their way around the stone spires, but my favorite was the Grand Parade Trail. This 2.1 mile loop is fairly flat, and will showcase the epic scenery!
#17: Petrified Forest Trail, Escalante Petrified Forest State Park
Did you know Utah has a Petrified Forest? Neither did I, until driving past it! While the Escalante Petrified Forest may fly under the radar compared to the more popular national park in Arizona, it is absolutely worth the visit!
For one, it’s just off Highway 12, a scenic drive that connects Bryce Canyon with Capitol Reef. Also, it’s only 20 miles from Escalante Natural Bridge and Lower Calf Creek Falls (mentioned below). An easy 1.9 mile hike will showcase all of the colorful petrified wood, making it very accessible. All of these reasons make it worth the visit!
#18: Escalante Natural Bridge, Grand Staircase – Escalante
A 4.4 mile roundtrip trail will take you through a sandy canyon to the base of this 130-foot long natural bridge. Along the way you’ll need to cross a river, so keep that in mind when packing hiking shoes! You could also wear a day pack, and take a change of water shoes strapped to the outside.
#19: Lower Calf Creek Falls, Grand Staircase – Escalante
Calf Creek Falls is by and far one of the most epic hikes in Utah! The trailhead is only two miles up the road from Escalante Natural Bridge, so you could do both in the same day if you’re ambitious and in shape.
After walking through a sandy canyon, you’ll come to the base of a thundering 214-foot waterfall. Be sure to do this hike in the Spring to see the waterfall at its fullest. The hike there is flat, easy, and 5.5 miles out and back.
#20: Hickman Natural Bridge, Capitol Reef National Park
Right in the middle of Capitol Reef National Park is Hickman Natural Bridge. A short, easy 1.7 mile out and back hike will take you to this incredibly epic and beautiful natural bridge. While heading back you’ll have excellent views of the ‘Capitol Dome’ (a rock formation that resembles the US Capitol Building in Washington DC), and the red sandstone cliffs.
#21: Cassidy Arch Trail, Capitol Reef National Park
Another arch in Capitol Reef to visit is Cassidy Arch, which is named after the infamous outlaw Butch Cassidy who hid out in the region. A steep 3.5 mile roundtrip hike ascends the ‘Waterpocket Fold’ (the long jutting cliffs Capitol Reed), before reaching the arch. Be prepared to be met with excellent views over the entire area.
#22: Capitol Gorge Trail, Capitol Reef National Park
This interesting hike will take you down a sandy wash right into the heart of Capitol Reed’s sandstone rock formations! Shortly into the canyon don’t miss the Pioneer Register, where many pioneers coming out west wrote their names and the date into the cliff walls.
#23: Mesa Arch, Canyonlands National Parks
Moving on to Eastern Utah, we’re now at Canyonlands National Park. By and far my favorite hike in the park has to be Mesa Arch. While the trail is short, flat, and fairly unimpressive, the very end view is absolutely breathtaking! An 80′ long arch frames the wide expanses of the Colorado River-carved canyons, with the La Sal Mountains in the distance. This hike is great for the whole family.
#24: Grand View Point Trail, Canyonlands National Park
Another Canyonlands hike is Grand View Point Trail. From this point you’ll have epic views in 270 degrees over wide canyon expanses below you. The best part is, it’s only a 1.8 mile out and back trail to get to this point!
You’ll be several hundred feet above the Shafer Canyon floor, which in turn is high above the Colorado and Green River Canyons. You quite literally are on top of the world at this point!
#25: Delicate Arch, Arches National Park
Of course Delicate Arch had to make the list of Utah’s best hikes! Perhaps the most iconic site in the entire state, you jut can’t miss it on your visit to Moab. A 3 mile roundtrip hike will take you up the sandstone terrain, before reaching the stunning arch.
#26: Devil’s Garden Trail, Arches National Park
Aside from Delicate Arch (which is a world famous attraction!), Devil’s Garden Trail is probably the most interesting in the park. Along the way, you’ll see Landscape Arch (pictured below), one of the longest in the world! Also, you’ll see Double-O arch, Tunnel Arch, Pine Tree Arch, Navajo Arch, and more!
#27: Sand Dune Arch, Arches National Park
At just 0.3 miles roundtrip, I think this qualifies as the shortest hike on this entire list! However, don’t be fooled. Sand Dune Arch is tucked away in a sandstone canyon, and is absolutely beautiful around sunrise and sunset when the sun glows on the rock walls.
#28: Corona Arch, Moab
Want a fun hike without too many crowds? You’ll enjoy Corona Arch, which is just outside of Moab! The 3 mile roundtrip hike will have you crossing live railroad tracks, scrambling up sandstone, and climbing ladders, before arriving at the stunning destination! I must admit, Corona Arch is by far my favorite hike in the Moab area, and would recommend it to anyone looking for an adventure.
Related: Moab Utah Travel Guide
#29: Grandstaff Canyon Trail, Moab
Another free hike near Moab is Grandstaff Canyon. You’ll park at the banks of the Colorado River, before hiking 5.7 miles out and back through a canyon before reaching Morning Glory Arch. Like Landscape Arch, it’s one of the longest in the world!
#30: Rainbow Bridge, Lake Powell
Phew, if you’ve made it this far, I’m impressed! You’re a dedicated hiker. The final entry to this list is Rainbow Bridge by Lake Powell, which by the way can only be accessed by the lake. To get here, you can take a boat tour from Page, Arizona, and hike another mile to reach the arch.
So, looking for even more Utah travel tips and hikes? Now that you’ve seen this epic list of the Best Hikes in Utah, go check out even more below…
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