Utah: Lower Emerald Pool at Zion National Park

The good thing about being close to Zion National Park is that we can easily go for just one trail or viewpoint, and take our time instead of rushing from one shuttle bus stop to another. This is a good thing, since visiting Zion National Park in the summer months means you are dealing with crowds and long lines.

Today’s trail was Lower Emerald Pool, which is available from Stop 5 (Zion Lodge) on the shuttle bus.

Views from the trail

There are some amazing views along the trail, mostly within the .10 mile closest to the waterfalls and pool.

A little hazy in the distance, but majestic all the same.
Amazing view.
The blue skies were an awesome complement to the rocks today.
Another amazing view.

The main waterfall

We discovered today that summer is not the best time to see the pool or the falls. Minimal waterfall action, and the pool was eerily stagnant, though it had some water. So I focused on the waterfalls instead of the pool – there was a main waterfall and a secondary waterfall a little further down the trail.

View of the main waterfall from the secondary waterfall further along the trail. The drops on the left side are from the secondary waterfall.
A close up of the water coming over the rocks.
A wider angle shot to show the water on the rocks with more rocks and trees.

The secondary waterfall

The secondary waterfall was located very close to where the Lower Emerald Pool trail closes down. The Middle Emerald Pool and the Upper Emerald Pool were closed due the rock and land slides.

Looking through the water with the trees as a backdrop.
Before you get to the waterfall, there’s an amazing view of it cascading over the rocks.
A view of the waterfall from where the trail closes.

You would think that this trip couldn’t have taken very long at all, but when you add up the time spent waiting for the shuttle bus, waiting for the shuttle bus to get to our stop, walking the trail round-trip, and taking the shuttle back to the parking lot, it took 4 hours. For a less “photography oriented” person, it would probably shave about 20-30 minutes off, but you still need to invest some time in hiking any trail in Zion National Park.


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