Trip Details

Type: Hiking & Basecamp

Days: 5 or 6 Days

Distance: 30 to 40 mi/ 48 to 64 km

Difficulty: Intermediate

Origin: St. George, UT

Cost: 5-Days: $1350/person, 6-Days: $1550/person

Trip Description

This classic Utah hiking tour is one of our favorites! Towering cliffs, sparkling waterfalls, deep & narrow canyons, slickrock expanses and unimaginable views await the hiker that visits Southern Utah. Our Best of Canyon Country Basecamp Adventure will take you to a number of the greatest destinations in the Southwest including Zion & Bryce National Parks, as well as the lesser known Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, home to incredible slot canyons, natural arches and innumerable ancient ruins. Spend your days exploring these outstanding destinations with a small day pack and relax each evening in a comfortable basecamp catered to by your expert guide. Enjoy 1 or 2 days in Zion exploring the famous Narrows and a summit of Angel’s Landing. Next, it’s off to Bryce Canyon for a hike through its unearthly landscape of hoodoos and rock towers. We top it all off with a few days exploring the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, with its incredible diversity of slot canyons, slickrock, arches and rich ancient human history. This trip is a guide favorite and we’re confident you’ll agree.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1:
Meet your guide for breakfast and a brief orientation at 6am. Depart St. George for the 1 hour drive to Zion National Park. Our first hike will take us into the famous Narrows of the Virgin River. This watery hike requires us to get a little wet as the “trail” simply follows the small river up an incredible, narrow sandstone canyon. We explore upriver until our heart’s content before returning the way we came. Next we will set up a comfy camp and settle in for the evening. Enjoy a delightful dinner prepared by your guide. *Please note: If the Virgin River is flowing at high rates or thunderstorms/rain showers are imminent, a different hike will be chosen. There are many options for excellent hikes in Zion.
Drive Time: 1 hour
Distance & Elevation: 6 to 8 miles, minimal elevation
Lunch, Dinner

Day 2:
Another day in Zion offers us the opportunity to hike the steep and exciting trail to Angel’s Landing, offering one of the best views in the park. Climb up to Refrigerator Canyon, through Walter’s Wiggles and past Scout’s Lookout to the final ascent to the Landing. This narrow trail offers many chains, guard rails and carved steps for your peace-of-mind but might leave those with a fear of heights with shaky knees! Nonetheless, the rewards from trail’s end are magnificent views of the canyon below and are well-worth the effort. We return the way we came and the afternoon offers some time to relax or explore a little further with your guide.
Drive Time: 15 minutes
Distance & Elevation: 6 miles, 1500 foot ascent/descent
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3:
Next it’s off to Bryce Canyon. Today we explore along and beneath the rim of Bryce Canyon. The Fairyland Loop offers all that Bryce is famous for: unique rock towers (hoodoos), natural arches and windows and spectacular views. And it’s also less crowded than some of the other trails in the park. You’ll enjoy the fascinating features like the Chinese Wall, Boat Mesa and Tower Bridge. There are plentiful ups and downs along the way making this a moderately strenuous hike but the rewards are plentiful! After our hike, we will head to our campsite near the town of Escalante.
Drive Time: 2.5 hours
Distance & Elevation: 8 miles, 2300 foot descent/ascent
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4:
Slot Canyons!!! Perhaps you’ve seen them in pictures but to walk through these spectacular, narrow canyons is an experience you won’t soon forget. Beautifully carved by endless centuries of rushing water, these sandstone canyons are a photographers dream. You’ve got to see it to believe it! A visit to Devil’s Garden with its unique rock formations will round out another fabulous day in Canyon Country.
Drive Time: 1.5 hours
Distance & Elevation: 6 to 8 miles, minimal elevation
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5:
Today is all about waterfalls! Calf Creek is a gorgeous canyon with lush vegetation, cool, clear water and the idyllic Lower Calf Creek Falls. Enjoy a dip in the creek while your guide prepares a tasty lunch beneath the shady cottonwoods. If time allows, there is an opportunity to visit Upper Calf Creek Falls, an equally breathtaking oasis.
Drive Time: 1 hour
Distance & Elevation: 6 to 8 miles, 400 foot ascent/descent
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6:
On our final day, we will pack up camp and head back towards St. George. A stop in Red Canyon State Park offers a final opportunity to get out and stretch our legs in this dramatic landscape. Stunning views and quiet trails are the flavor of the day in Red Canyon, a seldom-visited jewel of Canyon Country. Your guide will choose one of many great hikes to suit the desires of the group. After lunch, we will finish up the drive back to St. George for farewells.
Drive Time: 4 hours
Distance & Elevation: 6 miles, 500 foot ascent/descent
Breakfast, Lunch

5-Day Option: For those looking for a shorter trip, our 5-day itinerary spends one less day in Zion National Park. We will embark on a hike to Angel’s Landing or Observation Point on Day 1. All other days are as described above.

*Final itineraries are occasionally subject to change due to permit/campsite availability, park restrictions/closures, weather conditions and/or road closures.

What’s Included:

  • A professional, licensed and medically trained guide
  • All necessary gear: backpack, tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad, trekking poles
  • All cooking/eating gear: bowls, cups, utensils (your guide will prepare all meals)
  • All meals from a light breakfast on Day 1 through lunch on the last day + trail snacks
  • Rountrip Transportation from your hotel in St. George, UT
  • Entrance fees, camping fees and backcountry permits

What’s Not Included:

  • Transportation to/from St. George, UT
  • Lodging the night before/after the trip
  • Clothing, raingear, and footwear
  • Personal toiletries, sunscreen
  • Water bottles/hydration bladder
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Guide gratuity (suggested 10-15% of trip cost)

*Upon booking you will receive a detailed trip information packet

How many people are in the group?

Most trips in Utah will accommodate 5 people plus one guide. On occasion, a group may be as large as 9 people plus 2 guides.

Are there age restrictions?

Children under the age of 12 are generally not permitted on regularly scheduled trips. This restriction may be negotiable on private tours. Please contact us with any questions regarding this policy.

How do I sign up?

In order to confirm a reservation, we require an initial deposit of $250 per person, with the final balance due 90 days prior to the trip’s departure. If you book a trip within 90 days of the trip’s scheduled departure, then full payment is due at the time of booking.

Your deposit is payable over the phone by Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, or Discover. Checks by mail are fine as well, as are bank transfers ($35 transfer fee). Call our office Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm Arizona time. 1-877-272-5032

Where does the trip begin/end?

This trip will begin/end in St. George, UT and you will need to spend the night prior to your trip’s scheduled departure in St. George. You will want to fly into either Las Vegas (2 hour drive) or St. George. Please visit our Travel Resources page for information on airports, shuttles/rental cars and recommended hotels.

Where do meet our guides?

We will meet for at 6:00am the morning of your trip’s departure at the Best Western Abbey Inn in St. George. It is best to plan on staying at this hotel the evening prior to your trip’s departure.

What do we do with our car and extra stuff?

We will provide all transportation to/from trailheads for the duration of the trip. We will pick you up at your hotel in St. George and return you there at the trip’s conclusion. Guests staying at the Best Western Abbey Inn (recommended) can leave their cars at the hotel. The hotel will often store your luggage for you, as well, but please confirm this option in advance. If you are staying at a different hotel, you will need to check with them as to whether you can leave your car/luggage there.

What time will we get back on the last day?

Expect to be back in St. George by 5pm at the latest on the last day of the trip. Many trips will return earlier but we cannot make any guarantees. In general, it is recommended that you do not plan to fly home on the same day your trip finishes. Since each trip has slightly different logistics, feel free to contact us with specific questions related to the expected return time for your trip.

 

2017 Dates

September: 24-29

October: 1-6

 

2018 Dates

April: 16-20, 23-27, 29-May 4

May: 7-11, 14-18, 20-25

More dates to come soon…

Don’t see your dates? Custom dates may be available!

Call 1-877-272-5032 or email us for details.