The Watchman Trail

Location: Zion National Park – Park Shuttle Map

Distance: 3.3 miles

Type: Day-hike; Out-and-back

Rating: Easy to Moderate

Permits & Fees: $35 pass for one vehicle (good for 7 days). If parking in the town of Springdale, UT, right outside of the entrance, it is $10 to park and $20 per person (good for 7 days) if walking into park by foot. More information can be found here.


Plenty of water, shoes with excellent grip and warm clothing in the fall and winter months are essential.

The Hike

No shuttle ride is required. This trail starts at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center, just across the road and near the RV Park. The trail begins on the right-hand side of the Virgin River. The dirt path leads to a paved road. Just across the road is the official starting point of the Watchman Trail where this sign is located:


The hike is very simple to follow with a few steep inclines up to the main lookout. There is also an optional loop ( I highly recommend) that offers different views of the canyon. This hike isn’t nearly as popular as the other hikes, but it is truly a hidden gem. The view was beautiful and there were hardly any other hikers. This is a great hike to end the day with, or if you’re looking for a cool down after a more strenuous hike.