This trail leads approximately one and a quarter miles southwestward from The Grotto Picnic Area to Emerald Pools. The route is easy for the first three quarters of a mile then climbs steeply to reach the upper pool. The pools are surrounded by white sand and a favorite place for photographers. Looking westward from the upper pool hikers can peer into Heaps Canyon. The views eastward include Zion Canyon. Expect to spend three hours along this trail.
Begin this hike from The Grotto. The trail begins on the western side of Zion Canyon Scenic Drive. Cross the river on a foot bridge then bear left at the fork. From this point the trail follows the river southward for three quarters of a mile. The trail ascends 150 feet as it follows the river and enters the forest approximately one quarter mile from the foot bridge.
Before the track reaches Heaps Canyon it turns westward and contours the mouth of the drainage. The trail splits shortly after entering Heaps Canyon. The left side of the fork leads to the lower pool. The right side of the fork leads to the middle pool. These trails eventually merge forming a loop that allows visitors to see both pools. The track leading to the right forks again after crossing Behunin Canyon. The right fork of this split leads along the Heaps Canyon drainage to upper Emerald Pool.
Directions: From South Entrance, Drive northward to the visitor center and park your car. Board the Zion shuttle and take it to The Grotto approximately five miles north in Zion Canyon. The trail begins on the western side of Zion Canyon Scenic Drive.
Elevation: 4,300 feet
Ending Elevation: 4,700 feet
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Zion National Park, Utah
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