The La Verkin Creek Trail
to the Kolob Arch
allows runners outstanding opportunities for solitude in a primitive area of Zion Wilderness. The trail begins at Lee Pass with stunning views of the Kolob Canyons as it crosses Timber Creek and continues to descend toward LaVerkin Creek. After seven miles, a spur trail leads to a viewpoint where they can see the Kolob Arch
. With a span of 287 feet and a thickness of 75 feet, the Kolob Arch
is one of the world's largest natural arches.
Parking for this trail requires a National Park pass which must be purchased ahead of time or in person at the Zion National Park office at the Kolob entrance en route to this trailhead.
This run The trail begins at Lee Pass and passes by the open canyons of the near by cliffs as it travels along Timber Creek. After coming around the corner and within view of La Verkin Creek, the trail descends the slope down to the creek bottom on a hard packed trail. Once on the creek bed, the trail heads up stream offering amazing views of the surrounding cliffs. The trail is 7 miles from Lee Pass to Kolob Arch
, one of the main destinations of the route and possibly the world's largest free-standing arch.
Located deep in the backcountry of Zion National Parks Kolob Canyons District, and hidden in a small side canyon, sits Kolob Arch
, perched high on the canyon wall with a majestic curve like a giant condors wing. Because of its remote location and virtual inaccessibility, Kolob Arch
for years has challenged cowboys, rangers, runners, climbers, and photographers alike. For most of the twentieth century many believed that Kolob was in fact the worlds largest freestanding arch, leading to years of debate and the motivation for various parties of adventurous thrill seekers to climb on and around the massive span in hopes of securing a defensible measurement.
Despite its isolated location, Kolob Arch
has become a favorite backcountry destination for thousands of visitors to Zion. They discover what most arch seekers will tell you: while beauty awaits every seeker at the end of the path, the reward begins unfolding at the trailhead. Along the trail to Kolob Arch
lies some of the most beautiful scenery in Zion.
Geology becomes art as the La Verkin Creek, with its soothing sounds of life-giving water, sculpts some of the most colorful canyon walls in southwestern Utah. Awe inspiring views of the Kolob Terrace along the trail give a tired runner many places to stop and recharge while gazing upon the high plateau country of Zion. Wildlife abounds in these protected canyons and runners will encounter reptiles, birds, and mammals.
Seven miles along the trail, one is rewarded with a sight not seen by most of Zions two and a half million annual visitors, the impressive expanse of Kolob Arch
. Most experts now agree that Kolob Arch
is not the worlds largest span in terms of measurement by width and size, but visitors concur with the claim that it is certainly one of the most beautiful and massive arches in creation surrounded and protected by the majestic scenery of Zion.
Visitors are often surprised by the relative lushness found in Zion Canyon. This riparian area of the Virgin River supports enormous cottonwood trees and a diversity of herbaceous plants and grasses. Nearby, saturated wetlands make nice habitat for cattails, willows, aquatic plants, and rushes. Water seeping out of the Navajo sandstone creates tranquil springs and the unique â€œhanging gardensâ€ for which Zion is famous, full of ferns, wildflowers, and mosses.
Moving up in elevation, the arid grassland and desert shrub communities give way to the pinyon-juniper community, a desert forest full of life. These slow growing evergreens are both cold and drought tolerant, supporting a diversity of wildlife to rival the riparian areas. Juniper trees, being more drought tolerant, dominate the transition zone between the lowland communities and the pinyon-juniper forests.