Thursday, July 9, 2009

Wildfire closes the West Rim Trail in Zion National Park

A wildfire, named the Horse Fire, is currently burning in the high country of Zion National Park near the West Rim Trail. The fire is approximately 1.5 miles southeast of Lava Point. The fire was started by a lightning strike on the 4th of July. The National Park Service has closed the trail from Lava Point to Potato Hollow. The small fire has burned 20 acres and is being managed by a multi-agency team including the park service, BLM and Utah state officials.

Here's the view down into Zion Canyon from Lava Point, where the fire is burning.

If you've got a trip planned to Zion, don't panic. This is a small fire in the northern part of the park. Unless you're planning on backpacking the entire length of the remote West Rim Trail, the fire probably won't have a significant impact on your visit. Zion Canyon (the main attraction in the park) is still open and as accessible as ever. The park service expects some smoke may settle into Zion Canyon at night, but doesn't predict it will be a major concern. If you'd like read the official park service report on the fire you can see it here.

If you're heading to Zion, pick up a copy of our camping guide, Moon Utah Camping. The book has all the info you'll need for camping in the park as well as recommended hikes in Zion Canyon.


  1. We were planning to hike the entire West Rim trail from Lava Point trailhead, but had a backup hike in the Kolob Canyons section (the La Verkin Creek trail). It seems there is another wildfire so officials closed the entire Kolob Canyons section! We are at a loss what to do...any suggestions?

    We did The Narrows top-bottom a couple of years ago. Orderville Canyon and The Subway top-bottom are both (semi)technical, we have limited rappel experience and no equipment anyway...

  2. Thanks for sharing on this great info with us for sure a lot of reader really love this too.

    National Park Utah