• Michael O'Keeffe

Hidden Zion: Exploring a Secret Sandstone Wonderland in Zion National Park in UT

Earlier this fall Chyna and I took a road trip south and west to visit family in Las Vegas. Along the way we stopped in Utah to spend a few days camping and hiking in Zion National Park, a desert favorite of mine. My goal was to find a spot off the beaten path, in a park so busy was that even possible? Lots of research had me stumbling upon a spot in the park's less visited Kolob Terrace region. In order to retain its relative secrecy I will not get too specific on the details of where this place is. A bit of research and I'm sure you could find it yourself. Anyway, this spot was truly a sandstone wonderland! Spires and hoodoos were peppered among stands of ponderosa pines and blooming yucca with far reaching views of the deep remote canyons of Zion's interior wilderness. I saw nobody the entire time even when I returned to my car. The silence was so silent it was deafening yet oddly comforting. I had accomplished what I had set out to do, see Zion in all it's wild glory sans humans. Take a look at the photos from that day below.


Zion National Park
These first few shots were taken around our campground up on the Kolob Terrace.

Zion National Park
A juniper tree under stormy skies near our campsite in Zion.

Zion National Park
Red Cone stands alone under a fiery sunset.

Zion National Park
Looking south from the Terrace towards distant Canaan Mountain.

Zion National Park
And a colorful sunset to end the day.

Zion National Park
First light over the hidden sandstone paradise.

Zion National Park
A close-up reveals in the rugged terrain. Truly incredible!

Zion National Park
I may be weird, but I love the intricate subtle beauty of an old gnarly tree.

Zion National Park
Looking north towards Pine Valley Peak.

Zion National Park
Absolutely perfect morning in the desert.

Zion National Park
A colorful sunrise over colorful rocks.

Zion National Park
More of that old gnarled tree.

Zion National Park
Just an awesome place to explore!

Zion National Park
Looking out far behind the sandstone towards the distant desert canyons.

Zion National Park
A closer look at the distant desert.

Zion National Park
Wonderful wavy sandstone and a craggy ridgeline at sunrise.

Zion National Park
Sun breaks over the interior canyons of Zion.

Zion National Park
Looking out towards the massive peaks of Zion's Main Canyon.

Zion National Park
A wide shot of this sandstone wonderland.

Zion National Park
Dramatic hoodoo filled wilderness.

Zion National Park
A few ponderosa pines cling to the stunning wind sculpted sandstone.

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