Hiking The Narrows:
I’ve always had my eye on The Narrows ever since my husband and I visited Zion National Park last year. The weather was uncooperative that day and we weren’t going to risk hiking it when there’s flash flood warning signs all throughout the park. Last month, two of my friends and I hiked The Narrows for the very first time. I couldn’t contain my excitement because somehow I knew this was going to be an epic adventure.
Preparing for the hike:
For every hike that I’ve done, I always make sure to plan ahead. This hike was no exception especially because of how unconventional this type of hike was. Hiking in waist-deep water wasn’t something you get to do or see everyday. Perusing through a couple of guides and articles online, I found out that we need to rent gear for our hike. Some advised against it saying that it was unnecessary but I didn’t want to risk it. I chose Zion Adventures because they offer rental packages at affordable prices. [I wrote a review for Zion adventures. Read THIS]. Aside from the gear, I also packed some lunch and snacks for us. Nothing too fancy, just something to keep us from fainting in the middle of the trail.
We left Vegas around 6 am feeling extremely confident that we’re right on schedule. Unfortunately, we forgot that Utah and Vegas are on different time zones and we just lost one hour. 2 1/2 hours later, we finally made it to Zion and went straight to Zion Adventures for our rentals. Armed with our gear, we headed for the shuttle bus.
The trailhead for The Narrows can be found in Temple of Sinawava. From here, we walked for about 1 mile till we reached the Virgin River. This is when we realized that our little time mishap had cost us some alone time with The Narrows. The trail had become very busy and too crowded for our liking. However, we noticed that the more we hiked upstream, the less crowded it became. Thank goodness! The water was cold but not freezing. It was rather pleasant given that it was hot that day. It was also murky. I wondered how many people
peed in the river. My feet were warm thanks to the neoprene socks and the shoes prevented me from falling flat on my face. The walking stick was a life saver! I used it to feel for rocks before I took a step.
Photo via Flickr
It was uneventful for an hour. We were busy focusing on navigating the river and avoiding loose, slippery rocks. After we got used to it, we found ourselves happily wading through the flowing water. I felt so small next to the 1500-foot walls surrounding me. I found solace despite having all these people around me which made this experience unique and incomparable to most of the hikes I’ve done. As we approach Wall Street, I felt the canyons “narrowing” down. Wall Street is a 2-mile section of the canyon that is the true definition of The Narrows. Photos don’t do it justice. You have to see it for yourselves!
Photo via Flickr
After taking a bunch of pictures, it was time to head back. It started drizzling so we had mini heart attacks. Rivers tend to rise quickly during sudden rainstorms that occur between July-September. As we reached the trailhead, there were a bunch of people starting their hike unaware of the risks. It was already late in the afternoon and the clouds were approaching. My advice is to always be prepared by educating yourself about the trails you’re hiking.
Photo via Flickr
Although The Narrows, Wall Street in particular, was beautiful, the journey itself made the trip memorable. I enjoyed laughing and sharing stories with my friends. Always remember, as great as the destination is, what matters most is the people you share it with. 🙂