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Scout’s Lookout

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Scout’s Lookout is most of the way up the famous Angel’s Landing, but doesn’t require a permit. It is still an incredible hike in Zion National Park!


Zion National Park has a shuttle system and cars are not allowed in the main canyon unless they are staying in the Zion Lodge. You can drive the scenic drive towards the east entrance.

The shuttles in Springdale and in the main canyon make for a great experience to be able to hop on and off the shuttle and not have to fight for parking.

Scout’s Lookout and Angel’s Landing trail begin at shuttle stop #6 The Grotto. This is also the stop for the Kayenta Trail to Emerald Pools.

The trail heads to the right after the bridge and the trail is beautiful right from the start!

There were a few wildflowers!

The trail slowly winds up higher and higher, but the views are incredible!

Some of the rock textures along this trail are amazing!

Soon you get to a mostly flat section that heads through to the backside. This section is the habitat for Mexican Spotted Owls. I would have love to see one, but we were just quiet for them.

Walter’s Wiggles

At the other end you wind up a couple more times and then you get to the famous Walter’s Wiggles. Walter Ruesch was the first super intendant of Zion National Park. The 22 sharp switchbacks were created in 1926 and paved in 1986. You can’t quite appreciate the scale while on the hike, so I will include a photo by Julie Kerr of Water’s Wiggles from above and then mine from the trail. Julie’s photo also shows how much of the hike still remains if you were to continue onto Angel’s Landing. Scout’s Lookout is that flatter area at the top of Walter’s Wiggles.

Scout’s Lookout

When you get to the top of Walter’s Wiggles you arrive at Scout’s Lookout. If you don’t have a permit, then this is your destination. The views don’t disappoint!

There is a restroom here if needed. It has to be emptied by helicopter so it’s pretty stinky.

If you do have a permit you can continue beyond to the chains section. I describe it in this post on Angel’s Landing.

Here is another amazing view from Scout’s Lookout!

Stats: Distance – 3.8 miles round trip
Approximate hiking time – 2-3 hours
Elevation gain – 1115 feet
Difficulty – Difficult
Trail – steeply paved
Bathrooms – At trailhead and Scout’s Lookout
Seasons to hike – Year-Round (use micro-spikes in winter)
Permits needed – $35/vehicle for 7-day pass or National Parks Pass to enter Zion
Pets allowed – No


We have so much beauty in Utah to explore! I love hiking and photography and can help you find your next favorite hike! All photos were taken by me!

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