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Zion - The Subway (June 28, 2009)

Hiking in Zion National Park: “The Subway”. Crossing the park by Scenic Byway 9 toward Bryce Canyon.

The Subway


The Subway is a very nice location, a narrow canyon that has been carved in a tunnel-like fashion. The many pools of azure and green make this canyon one of the most beautiful places in Utah.
There are two different trailheads to reach the Subway: one comes from the bottom, the other one comes from the top and is more technical, you need canyoneering gear and experience for this second one. So we took the bottom way which is accessible by walk.
To reach the Subway we started by walking Left Fork trailhead, located about 8 miles north-west of Virgin. From there we had to go down into a canyon where there is a river, Left Fork North Creek; then we followed the creek up.

It was still dark when we got up. The goal was to start hiking before 8 am when temperature is still cool.
The hike was quite long and technical. Often there was no visible trail so we crossed and re-crossed the river many times; we progressed slowly. After 3 hours we reached the first waterfalls and river terraces made of red sandstone, the Subway was not far from there.
When we reached the Subway we were alone to enjoy this fantastic place. Natural pools dug into the rock and filled with clear water forms almost perfect circles.

We had to go back as it is impossible to move forward, a waterfall blocks the path. The way back was difficult, it was hot and we had to go up to the plateau at the end of the trail. On the right bank we located dinosaur tracks, mentioned in some articles. Finally it took us 8 hours to go and back, including time for shooting pictures and taking a quick picnic break.

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah


Zion, Utah Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah
Natural pools in the Subway.

Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah


Zion, Utah Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah
Dinosaur tracks.

The Zion-Mount Carmel Highway


Then we went toward Bryce Canyon by the Scenic Byway 9, this road allows us to drive across the Zion National Park plateau. We went through rocky landscapes, rocks have rounded shapes and white, ochre and red colours.

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah

Zion, Utah Zion, Utah

Information


  • A permit is needed to do the Left Fork North Creek hike to the Subway. The number of permits is limited to 80 daily; a lottery allows distributing them. Draw is performed 3 months before.
    https://zionpermits.nps.gov/lotteryapply.cfm
city Kolob Reservoir Road, Virgin, Utah trend Profil
mountain 1650 m dl GPX
km 12 km (asc 450 m desc 450 m) ge KML

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