Emerald Pools Trail - Hike near Hurricane, Utah
Hurricane, UT 84737, USA,Hurricane,Utah
37.25104941189239, -112.95878648757935
19.0 miles E of Hurricane, Utah
Address: Hurricane, UT 84737, USA
GPS: 37°15'3.8"N 112°57'31.6"W
Maps | Directions
State: Utah

Picnic Tables National Park

Hike

The Emerald Pools were named for their unusual color. At some times of the year, algae gives the water in these pools a distinctive hue. A series of basins have been carved into a rock ledge in the canyon wall by flowing, falling water. This is one spot in the park where you'll almost always find at least a small waterfall.

You can choose to visit one, two, or all three of the Emerald Pools. The shortest option is to the Lower Pool (first pool) and back: about 1 hour. Visiting all three pools takes about 2 hours.

This popular trail has a little bit of everything—a waterfall, hanging gardens, tall cliffs, and great views of the Virgin River. Three small pools create a stark contrast in this desert landscape, attracting a variety of wildlife. Water is vital for their survival, so swimming is not allowed. This classic Zion hike is great for all your senses.

The Lower Emerald Pool Trail is a short, easy hike on a paved trail. Listen for animals and see a year-round waterfall provide life for hanging gardens. The Upper Emerald Pool Trail climbs an additional 240 feet providing bigger canyon views and a springtime waterfall.

Taking the trail between the Emerald Pools and The Grotto shuttle stops will take you from wet riverbanks to dry hillsides. This popular destination is often crowded. Try hiking early or late in the day. Swimming, bathing, and wading are strictly prohibited in the Emerald Pools and associated creeks.

The Lower Pool trail is paved and accessible to strollers. It may be too steep for wheelchairs even with assistance.

The Middle and Upper Pool trail is steeper and more strenuous. Trails are well marked, but cliff edges may be unstable and slippery. Please stay on marked trails and keep well back from the cliff's edge.

There are two main trailheads for the Emerald Pools, the Northern Kayenta trail and the Southern Emerald Pools Trail.

Emerald Pools Trail

The South trail starts at the Zion Lodge and takes you through a dryer climate with more shade.

Roundtrip: 1 hour / 1.2 miles (Lower pool only), 2.5 hours / 3 miles (Middle and Upper Pools)
Elevation Gain: 200 feet (Lower pool only), 440 feet (Middle and Upper Pools)
Difficulty: Easy/Moderate

Kayenta Trail

The Kayenta Trail starts at The Grotto shuttle stop and follows a high ledge to the Emerald Pools. This trail gets the heat of the sun and is a dryer climate but has a beautiful view of the Virgin River and canyon.

35.4K Written by endovereric

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Be courteous, informed, and prepared. Read trailhead guidelines, stay on the trail, and don’t feed the wildlife.

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  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel & camp on durable surfaces
  3. Dispose of waste properly
  4. Leave what you find
  5. Minimize campfire impacts
  6. Respect wildlife
  7. Be considerate of other visitors

Directions

From Hurricane, Utah

  1. Head north on S 100 W toward State St (456 ft)
  2. Turn right at the 1st cross street onto State St (2.8 mi)
  3. Turn right onto UT-9 E/W 500 N
    Continue to follow UT-9 E
    (21.8 mi)
  4. Turn left onto Floor of the Valley Rd/Zion Canyon Scenic Dr (2.6 mi)
  5. Turn left
    Destination will be on the left
    (276 ft)
or

Park at the visitors center and take the shuttle to The Grotto or the Emerald Pools shuttle stop.

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Guest Review/Comments

/5

endovereric

5/8/17 1:14 pm 9/30/16
We hiked the lower pools starting from the lodge. The trail was easy enough for my pregnant wife. We saw a snake in the grass near the trail on the way there, probably a garter snake. He was just a little guy too. We saw a few lizards near the pools. It may have just been the time of year that we went but I thought the waterfall and the hanging gardens were the highlight. I wasn't too impressed with the pool. We went back on the Kayenta trail which had a lot more elevation than we were planning on. We had to take that one a little slower. The view was great but we were going back in the middle of the day and the sun was just baking that trail. I imagine it would be great earlier in the day when the sun isn't quite up over the canyon, yet. Also, if we would have known what it was, we probably would not have gone to the Weeping Rock as the hanging gardens were very similar.
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Behind The Falls At Lower Emerald Pool Behind The Falls At Lower Emerald Pool
Waterfall At Emerald Pools In Zion National Park1 Waterfall At Emerald Pools In Zion National Park1 Fall Colors At Lower Emerald Pool Fall Colors At Lower Emerald Pool Map Emerald Pool Trail1 Map Emerald Pool Trail1 Upper Emerald Pool, Zion National Park by Sheety33 Emerald Pools Hike -  Zion National Park by Larry Schwartz Utah Zion National Park: Hiking Emerald Pool Trail by toorima X Hike to Lower Emerald Pool, ZION NP by Sheety33

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