Canyoneering Permits

 
Canyoneering
 

Recreation.gov Links

Plan Ahead and Prepare

  • Canyoneering permits are required for all canyons in Zion requiring the use of descending gear or ropes, single-day through-hikes of The Virgin River Narrows, and all trips into the Left Fork of North Creek (The Subway).
  • Wilderness areas are subject to natural forces such as: wildfires, rockfalls, flash floods, and other related factors that may cause closures or changes to trip plans. An online reservation does not guarantee that a canyon or resource will be open at the time of the trip.
  • The purpose of the Wilderness permit is to protect resources, manage visitor encounter rates, and educate users on safety concerns and resource protection.
  • Wilderness Permits do not provide a safety net for park visitors. Visitors are responsible for their personal safety, making informed decisions, and managing individual and group behavior in the Wilderness environment.

The Seasonal Lottery

  • An online Seasonal Lottery is held for Left Fork (Subway) and Mystery Canyon trips, year round.
  • Online applications must be submitted during the open window, two months before each three-month hiking season.
  • Applicants can rank up to four dates during the three-month season, and rank them in order of preference.
  • Choose your four prioritized dates carefully so that you do not need to change your application.
  • Applicants will be sent a notification email on the 27th day of the month with information about the status of their request.
  • Successful applicants will need to claim their reservation on rec.gov within two weeks of the results notification email.
  • There is a $6.00 non-refundable fee for the Seasonal Lottery application. Apply for the Left Fork (Subway) Seasonal Lottery. Apply for the Mystery Canyon Seasonal Lottery.

Advanced Reservations

  • Online reservations for most canyons in Zion are available up to three months in advance on a seasonal timeline.
  • Advanced reservations can be made for All canyons other than Left Fork (Subway) and Mystery Canyon. Advanced reservations are made on the Canyoneering Advanced Reservations page.
  • If spaces are still available, reservations can be made until 5:00 pm MT, the day before your trip.
  • If the canyon you want a permit reservation for is not listed in this menu (for example: Kolob Creek) then you must obtain your permit in person, Advanced Reservations are not accepted.
  • There is a $6.00 non-refundable fee for each Advanced Reservation. Apply for an Advanced Reservation.
For a trip in: Seasonal Lottery applications
(for Subway and Mystery only) can be submitted:
Advanced Reservations for all other canyons
become available:
January November 1 - November 25 January 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
February November 1 - November 25 January 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
March November 1 - November 25 January 5, 10:00am Mountian Time
April February 1 - February 25 March 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
May February 1 - February 25 March 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
June February 1 - February 25 March 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
July May 1 - May 25 June 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
August May 1 - May 25 June 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
September May 1 - May 25 June 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
October August 1 - August 25 September 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
November August 1 - August 25 September 5, 10:00am Mountain Time
December August 1 - August 25 September 5, 10:00am Mountain Time

The Daily Lottery: 2 Days in Advance

  • An online Daily Lottery is also an option for Canyoneering trips when the Seasonal Lottery or Advanced Reservations are not available.
    • This is the only tool you can use to apply for a Mystery Canyon or Left Fork (Subway) reservation if you did not get a reservation through the Seasonal Lottery.
  • Individuals can apply for the Daily Lottery to make reservations for permits.
  • The Daily Lottery is limited to one request per individual, with the option to choose up to four canyons in the application. Applications can only be submitted two days before your desired hike date, between 12:00am and 3:00pm MT.
  • The lottery drawing is held at 4:00 pm MT, two days before the trip date. Applicants will then be sent a notification email with information about the status of their request.
  • Any spaces not taken through the Daily Lottery will be available as Walk-in Permits the day before a trip date.
  • There is a $6.00 non-refundable fee for the Daily Lottery. Apply for the Daily Lottery.

Obtain Your Wilderness Permit

  • Plan your trip itinerary to allow sufficient time to obtain your permit the day of, or the day before your trip during our Hours of Operation.
  • Allow for at least 20 minutes to obtain a permit. Come prepared with all vehicle(s) information: make, model, and license plate(s).
  • All Wilderness permits must be obtained in-person at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center Wilderness Desk.
  • The individual listed as the reservation holder must be the one to obtain the permit, please plan accordingly.

Permit Cost:

Lottery Application Fee: $6 lottery application fee (non-refundable) or advanced reservation fee.
Per Person Fee: $10 per person (refundable).
The reservation fee (in lieu of the lottery application fee) and per person fee are also charged for first-come, first-served permits that are issued in person. This fee supports the permit and reservation management system.

Wilderness Permits are Non-Transferable

Traveling in the Zion Wilderness requires careful planning and preparation. Permit holders assume the responsibility of ensuring that their group is aware of the risks involved, is self-reliant, has developed a back-up plan, and will follow park regulations. Because these are such important aspects of trip planning and resource protection, permits for trips into the Zion Wilderness are non-transferable.

If you cannot participate in your trip, please cancel your reservation to provide opportunities for others. If other members of your group still wish to participate in a planned trip, you may coordinate with a new prospective permit holder for them to immediately reserve the available spaces or sites, as soon as your reservation has been cancelled.

You may cancel your reservation online by logging in to your recreation.gov account. As soon as your reservation is cancelled, those spaces or sites will immediately be available for someone else to obtain through the calendar reservations page. New permit holders will need a Zion Wilderness Reservations Account prior to creating a calendar reservation.

Plan your trip itinerary to allow sufficient time to obtain your permit the day of, or day before the trip during Zion Wilderness Desk Hours of Operation. The individual listed on reservation must be the one to obtain the permit, please plan accordingly.

Zion Express Membership

  • Zion Express Membership allows visitors who regularly visit the park, and are familiar with the park resources, to obtain a login account to create online reservations and convert them into Wilderness Permits from home.

  • To become a member, applicants must watch three orientation films at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center Wilderness Desk. (Membership cannot be obtained in the Kolob Canyons.)

  • After watching the films, applicants will sign a Zion Express Program Agreement form and obtain a username and password for their member account.

  • There is no cost for enrollment. Membership is valid for the remainder of the current year and for the next two calendar years.

  • Memberships may be cancelled if any regulations are violated.

 
 
 
 
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A step-by-step guide for using recreation.gov to apply for the day use Advanced Canyoneering Reservation in Zion National Park. This reservation is not a permit. Pick up your permit at the Wilderness Permit Office located within the Visitor Center either the day prior or day of your trip.

 

Last updated: May 17, 2024

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1 Zion Park Blvd.

Springdale, UT 84767

Phone:

435-772-3256
If you have questions, please email zion_park_information@nps.gov. Listen to recorded information by calling anytime 24 hours a day. Rangers answer phone calls from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. MT, but a ranger may not answer if they are already speaking with someone else.

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