One of the most popular hiking areas and a top of the must-do list in Zion National Park is the Narrows. This is the narrowest section of Zion Canyon, stretching for 26 km and narrowing up to six meters in some spots, and what's more, the hike involves wading or even swimming across the Virgin River. Known as one of the world's best slot canyon hikes, it annually attracts thousands of tourists who come for the most dramatic and inspiring sceneries in the whole country.
There are different ways to hike the Narrows. Bottom-up is the best choice for the first-time river hikers and people who don't have too much time to enjoy the park. This trail will take you from the Temple of Sinawava via the Riverside Walk to the section, known as Wall Street where the walls are higher than 600 metres. It takes from two to three hours and almost 2/3 of this time for the way back.
Another and longer way is to hike the Narrows from the top to bottom with a starting point at Chamberlain's Ranch. It could be a one day hike best suitable for experienced hikers, or you can split it in two days and overnight in the canyon.
The season lasts from late May to September. Winter is too cold to walk across the river. In spring, the trail is closed as the water level is too high for flash flooding. The best season for this refreshing experience is summer and early fall. The best time to make fascinating light pics is usually between 10 am and 3 pm during the summer season. Sometimes flooding can also occur after thunderstorms in July and August. Thus, the water level should always be checked in the visitor centre while planning the hike.