Biking the “unpopular” Moab trails
Unpopular is in parenthesis here because these trails are so spectacular that the fact they are less popular than some of the more recognized trail is simply a travesty. As you probably know, a mountain in Moab certainly isn’t one of the overlooked Southern Utah activities, but many of the mountain biking trails in Moab are sadly overlooked and underutilized. Slickrock Trail is great and all, but what about the Bar M Loop, or trails in Dead Horse Point? These are just two of many Moab trails that need more love by the mountain bikers of the world.
Canyoneering outside Zion National Park
There are a lot of people out there who have never been canyoneering but still think they know what it is, but they are largely incorrect. Canyoneering isn’t just repelling down and through canyons. It’s much more than that. It involves a lot of problem-solving and exploring because of canyons, in general, often change form due to water carrying debris. The main excitement of canyoneering is that even the guides sometimes are unaware of what to expect. Though Zion National Park has its own share of incredible canyoneering locations, there are many more locations just outside the Park and beyond that are just as wonderful and challenging. This is an excellent choice among Southern Utah activities.
Moab rock climbing
Have you ever heard of Indian Creek? It is a well known Utah area where experienced and seasoned rock climbers come and do their thing. However, there are many other areas in and around Moab where amateur and even first-time rock climbers can come and have a great time. This makes our list because there’s a big misconception that rock climbing is really hard, expensive, and is only for real thrill seekers and outdoor enthusiasts. That is not true. As long as you have the physical capacity to climb, you will have the time of your life on a rock climbing guided tour. Give it a try!
Colorado River rafting
River rafting is typically not something that an out-of-towner (and even locals, for that matter) would associate with Southern Utah activities. But the truth is that portions of the Colorado River come through the great state of Utah and river rafting through it is an unforgettable experience. There are enough sections that you can choose between very bumpy, white-water rapids to a mostly smooth journey.
Hiking some of the lesser-known trails in Zion
Scenic drives are great and all, but don’t make the mistake of never getting out of your car to enjoy nature. I think that locals are the biggest culprits of this. Hiking in the desert is a totally different experience compared to hiking in the mountains, which is what hiking is normally associated with. The animal and plant life are totally different and the natural landscapes, especially in Southern Utah, are just incredible. Zion National Park has both kinds of hikes. Angels Landing and Observation Point is phenomenal but don’t forget about hikes such as Taylor Creek Trail, Sand Bench Loop, and Deer Trap Mountain. These are just a few of the hikes that are breathtaking, but you won’t find them on a t-shirt in the gift shop.
The number of Southern Utah activities is so large that it would be close to impossible to write about them all in the same article, but add some of these ones to your itinerary the next time you come to Southern Utah. And of course, don’t forget about guided tours with Zion Helicopters. It’s more than likely that it will be the highlight of your Zion vacation.