Trans-Zion Trek for New Years???

8:57 p.m. on October 18, 2012 (EDT)
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I am planning on going to Zion NP from 12/27/12 to 1/1/13. I am very interested in doing the Trans-Zion Trek a.k.a. Zion Traverse. However, after endless hours of searching I have been unable to find much information about this trip for that particular time of year. Info such as... Would I expect patches of snow or knee deep snow? Would we need show shoes or just micro spikes? I would anticipate 5 days & 4 nights of backpacking / camping. Any information would be greatly appreciated! Thanks Chuck

1:37 p.m. on October 19, 2012 (EDT)
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2,295 forum posts

Five days would be on the ambitious side in good conditions.  You can cross this off your tick list in five days, but this pace has you rushing through, too fast to really enjoy the surroundings.  Add two more days and you'll enjoy the basic thru hike a lot more.  Also you may want to consider additional time for all the great side hikes 

You can anticipate dry ground, at one extreme, or several feet of fresh powder at the other extreme.  Or rain.  If it is wet, the trials on top the buttes can get extremely muddy - sometimes the rangers close the trail due to this condition.  You may have icy trails making for dangerous passage on some of the more exposed trail section.  Potable water can be a problem, too, as the sustained drought may mean certain sources are dry until the season's precipitation replenishes those sources.  A sustained freeze can also affect ability to collect water.

I prefer full-on crampons over micro spikes when hauling a pack, as the bindings are more sturdy.

Ed

12:07 p.m. on October 23, 2012 (EDT)
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Thanks for the insight Ed! I guess the moral of the story is to expect the unexpected. We will plan accordingly.

October 2, 2014
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