Hiking Angels Landing - Zion National Park
Angeles Landing is a bucket list hike that everyone should do at least once in their lifetime. Whether you brave the steep dropoffs and make it to the end, or you just go as far as you are comfortable with, this is a hike that will live on in your memory forever.
4.8 miles round trip
If you are looking for a good workout this is the hike for you. 1488 feet of elevation gain will leave your legs feeling like jello, but the views are more than worth it. I do not recommend this hike with young kids. With that being said, hiking to Scouts Lookout (the area before the chains) with kids is doable and totally worth it. Even halfway up the views are amazing!!!
This trail starts at The Grotto, shuttle stop #5. Cross the road, go over the bridge, go to the right and you are on your way. If you go to the left you will be on the Kayenta Trail. In the winter when shuttles are not going, there is a parking lot. Parking in the winter during the day will be hard to find.
The start of the trail will take you along the Virgin River. As you veer away from the river, you will begin the switchbacks and intense elevation gain. Before you reach the first top section called Scout’s Lookout, you will get the joy (haha) of climbing 21 steep switchbacks known as Walter’s Wiggles.
Scout’s Lookout offers some crazy beautiful views of the canyon from above. From here you will start on the real fun stuff.....the chains and steep dropoffs. As long as you hold on to the chains, go slow and are careful with your footing, there is nothing to be scared of.
Getting to the end of the trail is exhilarating! The views are just so freaking amazing, and there is such a huge sense of accomplishment. I think this is one of the reasons that this trail is one that will stick in your head forever. Scroll through for tips and additional information.
TIPS AND ADITIONAL INFO
My tip for hiking Angels Landing in the summer without the crowds.....go for sunset!!! You will miss the last shuttle out of the park this way but if you take a bike into the park you will only have a 3 mile ride to get out of the park and back to your car. Start the hike about two hours before sunset and come down the chains when it is still light and pull out headlamps for the last leg of the hike.
You can also ride your bike into the park super early in the morning and hike the first section of Angels Landing in the dark with head lamps and then hike up the chains when you get some sunlight light coming up but I like the sunset option a lot better.
Use the bathrooms at the Grotto before you go up! I can not stress this enough. There are bathrooms at Scouts Lookout but believe me, you do not want to use these, and the park does not want you to either.
Take plenty of water and snacks. There is a water fill station at the Grotto stop.
If you are in good shape and keep a moderate pace you can complete this hike in 2.5 to 3.5 hrs.
Good comfy hiking shoes with lots of traction will be your friend. A hiking stick might be a good option too for the downhill.
If you have hiked Angels Landing and you have any other tips or additional info we would love to hear from you in the comment section below.