4 Day Itinerary For Hiking Zion, Bryce & Havasu Falls
Southwest Adventure – a detailed video from our trip to Utah and Arizona by Serge Pikhotskiy on Vimeo.
It was last minute, unanticipated trip. My friend and I were talking on the phone and I threw an idea of visiting Southwest and visit some places in the area. Two days later, we were on the plane flying from Philadelphia to Las Vegas. We arrived late in the evening, picked up our rental and spent a night at one of the cheaper hotels on the outskirts of Las Vegas strip.
ARRIVAL: The following morning we woke up before sunrise, grabbed quick breakfast and drove toward Zion National Park, which is about 2.5 hours away from Las Vegas. Along the way we stopped at St.George, which is a very large town that has plenty of specialized stores and large supermarkets. There we grabbed some last minute supplies and canister fuel (we brought most of our own food, including dry freeze meals from Philly).
When entering Zion National Park, you will be required to purchase a minimum 7 day pass ($20 per person or $35 per vehicle). It’s a popular location, so if you’re planing on camping in the park, make sure to reserve campgrounds in advance. There are first come first serve camping available, but there is a small chance that you might not be so lucky.
DAY 1: On our first day, the plan was to hitchhike all the way from Zion’s National Park South Entrance Ranger Station to West Rim Trailhead near Lava Point Overlook and hike to our reserved camping spot (plan ahead to reserve your campground, there are limited number of sites and they typically fill up months in advance) We were extremely fortunate to pickup someones cancelled online reservation two days prior to our arrival. Full blog for hiking the West Rim Trail
DAY 2: It was around 12PM when we got back to our car after hiking the West Rim Trail. Our plan was to drive NE for 2 hours to Bryce National Park and hike the Sunrise Point Loop of 6.8 Miles (be prepared to pay another fee of 35$ to enter the park)
TIP: If you’re visiting more then two parks, you should consider purchasing an annual pass for $80 that would cover all of the parks in the region and throughout the United States
Upon arrival, we parked our car near Bryce Canyon Lodge. We had plenty of daylight left, so we decided to do the full loop starting at Sunrise Point and visiting Bryce and Sunset Points along the way. It took us about 4 hours to do the loop and we returned to lodge parking lot at around 6:00PM. Full blog for Hiking the Sunrise Point Loop.
DAY 3: We arrived at Havasupai Campground Parking Lot around 2:30AM. The lot was full, but you could still park your car on the side of the road before entering the parking lot. We folded back our seats and slept for 2-3 hours before sunrise.
Havasupai Indian Reservation strictly requires permits for day hikes and overnight stay. This place is very popular and is very hard to reserve, especially two weeks prior to your trip. We were not able to make any reservation in time and decided to try our luck. Read the full blog here: Havasu Falls Day Hike
It was a long day and a pretty exhausting hike. Considering that we only slept for 2-3 hours in our car the night before, we felt a bit exhausted upon returning back Haulapai Hilltop parking lot. While we watched the sunset, the storm was rolling in on the horizon… Read the full blog here: Havasu Falls Day Hike
DAY 4: After spending a night at the hotel, we decided to take it slow for today. We visited some local historical sites & few local restaurants. We also stopped by the Hoover Dam and parts of Las Vegas before boarding our flight back to Philadelphia late in the evening.