Behunin Canyon

Location: Zions National Park
Rating: Intermediate 3B III
Length: 5-9 hours
Longest Rappel: 165ft (50m)
Start: The Grotto (West Rim Trail)
End: The Grotto (West Rim Trail) North Canyon of Emerald Pools.
Permits: Required
Wet Suit: Not needed
Shuttle: No

** Permits can be obtained from Zion National park through an online lottery system. The lottery is 2 days, 7 days or 3 months in advance. Mystery and Subway are the only canyons with a lottery 3 months in advance. Click here for site lottery.

Overview: Begin hike up to Angles Landing (West Rim Trail). Canyon approach is 3.8 miles with 2000ft ascension. Many are deterred because of the difficult hike up to the canyon. 8-9 rappels. Water pools can be avoided with some difficulty. Wet Suit not necessary, but advisable in cold weather. Rope snagging possible – be prepared. Good idea to bring extra rope and possible ascenders. Never climb a snagged rope!


Take Zion shuttle to Grotto shuttle stop. Head up the West rim trail. You will pass the Angels landing split off and continue forward. The trail will veer west after a short jaunt and through a nicely forested area, (forested for a desert anyhow).  Once the trail veers north again up a step set of switchbacks - you’ve found the mouth of Behunin Canyon.  The 3.8 mile trek may prove disheartening for some. At this point do not head up the switchbacks but drop into the canyon and begin following it down southward. A trail guide is handy to have at this point. There are 9 rappels. The first is the most difficult to find as it is found a little ways along the steep slope.


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