In every wilderness area, stewardship makes a difference between resource degradation and resource preservation. CUSA encourages a reflective and thoughtful outdoor adventure experience, where we help preserve the extraordinary places we enjoy for ourselves and others, far into the future. Please consider the following ideas on impacts, ethics, and responsibilities to keep Zion wild and beautiful.

Rappel Zion.jpg

Practice minimum impact that all can enjoy Zion's beauty for years to come.


Please minimize your impacts in the canyons. Besides the usual obvious points, here are a couple of canyon-specific notes:

  • MYSTERY CANYON - In the upper canyon, stay IN THE WATERCOURSE as much as possible. Most of the short drops can be downclimbed fairly easily, or rappeled off available anchors. Cutting around the drops is making horrendous social trails in the soft, unstable soil.
  • BEHUNIN CANYON - Again, stay in the watercourse. In the middle part of the canyon, social trails cutting around obstacles are creating some real messes. By staying in the watercourse, you can minimize your impact - and have a good time. This might mean swimming a pool, but packs can be zipped across, and anyway, you're canyoneering - you're supposed to get wet. Folks will find that by staying in the watercourse, the nasty, two-stage rappel is replaced by a very easy and pleasant two-stage rappel.
  • SPRY CANYON - Stay in the watercourse. There's a really neat pool that you get to swim. At the end, when hiking down, do NOT cut left to the sandpile. Instead, descend directly down the watercourse. When you get to the 90' cliff, either rappel (a nice one) or walk right to the edge of the sand pile, and find a trail down and back into the watercourse.

Local Ethics

Zion's canyons have a lot of bolts already, and don't really need more. There are quite a few museum quality bolts out there, so please use caution. Other than maintenance of existing anchors, please do not add bolts to the canyons of Zion. The new ethic in Zion is to leave as little trace of your passage as possible.