West Rim Trail to Lava Point

MODERATE 62 reviews
#13 of 82 trails in

West Rim Trail to Lava Point is a 29 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Springdale, Utah that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October.

29.0 miles
6223 feet




nature trips

trail running




wild flowers


no dogs

The West Rim Trail has some of the most spectacular views. There are beautiful canyons, springs, seeps, trees and flowers. You will not want to spend a lot of time looking at your feet during this hike. If you seek an element of danger then a side trip to Angels' Landing is for you. You can hike the West Rim Trail from the Lava Point trail head to The Grotto trail head or vice versa. You will need to rent a shuttle to take you to the trail head at Lava Point or pick you up from the trail head at Lava Point depending on which direction you hike. The shuttle can be rented from Zion Adventure Company. They have a store front near the Zion Visitor Center. The actual hiking starts at the point the road to Lava Point is closed, the road has snow and fallen trees on it. This adds about a mile to the trip. This guide details the hike from Lava Point to The Grotto trail head over the course of two days with a stop at camp site four. This direction is easier than going in the opposite direction. The guide also assumes a night spent camping at camp site four. This guide also has two dog legs: one to get water near camp site one, and one to go to Angels Landing. There is good cell service near the Zion Visitor Center, but for the bulk of the hike there is no cell service at all from any carrier. So, a PLB or Sat Phone is a good idea. Water can be pumped near camp site one and camp site eight. If you plan to do Angels' Landing make sure you leave enough time to get to the top. It is possible to do the entire trip as a day hike for those who are carrying not much and are in very good shape. If you are coming from out of town it is a good idea to camp at the camp sites near the Zion Visitor Center to acclimate before you set out to do the trail. Finally, you are in the desert so make sure you have enough water.

27 days ago

I did part of the trail from the Grotto through to the first campsite and back. Physically challenging trail due to multiple switchbacks and 3000 elevation gain but so worth it. It gets crowded on the first stretch up to Angels Landing. After that I only came across 6 people. One of them was returning from camping overnight. Another one was heading for camping. I booked one of the campsites too, but temperatures dropped to 26 F and I had to stick to a day hike and have no regrets. Gorgeous views on sunny chilly day. Due to snowfall and icing, recommend to wear some type of chains for the

2 months ago

Very nice trail to overlook Zion National Park

2 months ago

There is not a better way to see Zion than this trail. Expansive views of Zion to Cedar Breaks

trail running
3 months ago

Wow! Spectacular fall colors to go with the canyon colors made this run/hike totally amazing. We really did not expect the brilliant reds and oranges mixed with the yellows of the leaves. Totally awesome experience. We are already making plans to do it again next year.

We started at the West Rim trailhead and ended at The Grotto. We were able to run over half of it easily and hiked the rest. Measured the distance right at 17 miles so a bit longer than the advertised 13-14 miles. There was some water but it definitely requires filtering if you need to get it. We took 6 hours with hundreds of photo op stops. Had the whole trail to ourselves until we got close to the Angels Rest area and then it got a bit busy.

5 months ago

Nice trail with great views of the Canyon. Perfect if you aren't able to make it up Angel's Landing.

7 months ago

Amazing backpacking trip!

7 months ago

No words for this one but wow!!!

9 months ago

We went up from Grotto and after Angel's Landing continued past it to the West Rim. Incredible views and terrain just past the Landing and much less crowded as well. Ended up camping out at campground #1 that was close to some water. Very challenging but rewarding with gorgeous views along the way and the top.

11 months ago

did this hike in Nov 2016. days were in the 60s and nights in the low 30s. did the top down route, staying over night at campsite 4. it can be done in one day but we wanted to take our time and enjoy the amazing views. pretty easy hike until the canyons with the 5000' decent. a little rough on my knees.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

We hiked from the Grotto trailhead up past Scout Lookout, turning around just before the trail veered away from the main canyon. Most everyone is familiar with the incredible views on the way up to Angels Landing. But it is amazing how few people head even a short distance past the Lookout. The views of the upper portion of the canyon, and of Angels Landing itself, are tremendous. The trail deserves five stars for just the short portion that we tackled. I can't fathom how amazing it must be to complete the entire 13 miles. I definitely envision a shuttle to Lava Point and a return hike being a top priority for the next visit, whenever that might be!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Did this one from the bottom up to Horse Pasture Plateau on a solo day hike. It was my favorite hike of the week we hiked in the area and top 10 of any hike I've ever done. There were some areas up top that were a little dangerous with huge drops and a lot of debris on the trails. There some very nice long climbs and some of the best views any where I've seen. Once I was a mile past Angel's Rim I never saw anyone until I came back down. My only regret for the week was not just putting on my backpack and just hiking everywhere we could..........#276

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Backpacked this and enjoyed it. The trail from Lava Point to Angels Landing was so quiet. It felt great to get away from the crowds. Stayed at campsite 2, excellent overlook. Was happy to explore a new trail at the park.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

We just did this hike last Saturday. Started at Lava Point and hiked to the Grotto Trail head with Tom Saxon, Karl Rosette and myself. According to the map and trail markings the hike is a little over 13 miles. It took us a little over 6.5 hours to complete we only stopped a couple times. Expect full sun exposure during the majority of this hike. I took 200 ounces of water and used almost all of it. The trail is well marked super easy to follow. I would rate this hike slightly above moderate in difficulty. There are a couple steep climbs but nothing crazy if you take your time. We only seen a couple other hikers until we got near Boy Scout overlook at Angels Landing. It got really crowded at Angels landing. The views are incredible 100% worth the pain.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Just backpacked this last weekend, and I can't even describe how incredible it was. The views just never stop hitting you. It seemed like every 15 minutes we were looking at a completely different and beautiful formation. We went from Lava Point to the Grotto, which is apparently backwards from the way I'm seeing most people do it. That being said, I don't think it really matters which way you go, as you see everything either way. Definitely not an easy hike, but it is 100% worth every step.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Definitely a workout to get to the top. But it is so worth it. There was a lot of traffic on the trail but that's expected given the popularity

Monday, May 23, 2016

My family shuttled to Lava Point and included Angels Landing. Angels Landing was a mess with people but the West Rim was amazing. When we get back to Zion, can't wait to do it again.

Monday, May 16, 2016

My son, wife, and I took a private shuttle near lava point and hiked down to grotto. The hike was gorgeous with high mountain ecosystem and everything in between. We pushed through and included angels landing in one day. The mileage was approximately 15.4 ml. We loved the trail and got some incredible views, can't wait to do it again

Monday, April 25, 2016

Very long 14-mile day hike, but such amazing views and changes in terrain!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

I made a loop out of the West Rim with the Telephone Canyon Trail for a 14 miler.

The section up to the Angel's Landing spur was a real zoo by 9am. I had planned to include it on my way up, but the traffic compelled me put it off til my return back down from the rim. Bad judgement. In retrospect, I should have realized the Landing would be much crazier by afternoon! I've felt less crowded in a mall on Christmas Eve.

No regrets though. The mobs evaporated instantly as I continued onward towards the rim. Lots of incredible scenery and the ascent actually seemed somewhat easier than the workout up to the Angel.

What started out as a beautiful, warm spring morning turned into a near blizzard on top of the rim, but the hike along it was stunning all the same.

If you are planning to camp, I recommend using the Telephone Canyon Trail to get to campsite 6 relatively quickly. Otherwise, I'd be inclined to do the rim trail as an up and back, simply to get the views both ways. The Telephone is more or less a forest trail with no outstanding vistas. In fact, it had a very muddy ridge section that turned out being the trickiest part of the hike.

I would have loved to have gone onto Lava Point, but was told the access was too snow-packed to arrange a shuttle. I would have far preferred doing that instead of being absorbed back into the swarm awaiting my return thru Angels Landing.

Highly recommended otherwise!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Didn't make the entire trail, but was beautiful and secluded.

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