OUTDOORS + RECREATION

Holiday plan for shuttles, personal vehicles in Zion National Park

Dec 21, 2023, 1:25 PM | Updated: 2:02 pm

Image of visitors viewing wildlife on Pa’rus Trail on Dec. 20, 2023 in Zion National Park, which ...

Visitors view wildlife on Pa’rus Trail on Dec. 20, 2023. (National Park Service, Jonathan Shafer)

(National Park Service, Jonathan Shafer)

SPRINGDALE, Utah — Zion National Park will offer a shuttle service for visitors who want to hike some of the park’s most popular trails between Friday and Dec. 31. 

Park officials anticipate larger crowds due to the holiday season. The shuttle is intended to help keep traffic in the park to a minimum.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2024, people who want to visit the park and the trails along Zion Canyon Scenic Drive will be able to drive their own vehicles. But between Dec. 22 and Dec. 31, the park will not allow personal vehicles on that drive.

Visitors who are interested in visiting or hiking Angels Landing, Emerald Pools, the West Rim Trail, and the Narrows between Dec. 22 and Dec. 31, 2023, will have to use the shuttle service.  

How to visit Zion National Park in the winter

You do not need to get a permit or make a reservation to enter the park or to ride the shuttle.

You will need to pay the park’s entry fee.

Park officials have closed the Big Bend Shuttle Stop, temporarily, because of construction.

The first shuttle will arrive at the Visitor’s Center at 8 a.m. The last shuttle will leave the Visitor’s Center at 3 p.m.

According to a press release from the National Park System, the last shuttle leaving the Temple of Sinawava is at 5:45 p.m.

The park service said that if there are more people in line at 3 p.m. than the shuttle can seat, “those who do not board can return another day to ride up-canyon.” They will also be prompted to visit areas other than Zion Canyon Scenic Drive.

Access more shuttle information at the Zion National Park website.

Weather and planning

Zion National Park is located in southern Utah, which typically features temperatures much higher than those in the central and northern portions of Utah. However, temperatures are much cooler in December even in southern Utah.

The park asks visitors to be aware of daytime and water temperatures and to dress and recreate appropriately.

Visitors should be prepared for crowds according to the park. This includes being aware of pedestrians and bicyclists.

Finally, the park asks visitors to please adhere to the national Leave No Trace program.

Related reading: Zion National Park announces lottery info for Angels Landing hike

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Holiday plan for shuttles, personal vehicles in Zion National Park