- Shuttle Stop 7, [Weeping Rock]
- Estimated Roundtrip Time: 2.5 hours
- Distance: 2.4 miles/3.9 kilometers
- Elevation Change: 850 feet/259 meters
About the Hidden Canyon Trail
The Hidden Canyon was discovered during rescue efforts that recovered a failed climb on the adjacent Great White Throne. The climber was found and rescued in the green canyon between the Throne’s eastern wall and Cable Mountain’s western wall. A year later the trail to this elevated “hanging” canyon was manufactured and Zion National Park gained another wonderful hiking trail that brings hikers to new heights and allows a little more free exploration than many other of the official trails.
At the time of this writing, Hidden Canyon Trail is closed. Cable Mountain overlooking Zion Canyon has been very active in the last few years shedding rockfalls down onto the trails below. It seems that every time the National Park Service nears clearing the trails from the previous landslide, a new one reburies the trails again. Weeping Rock, Hidden Canyon, and any other trails that begin in this notch of Zion Canyon are closed for now but we will continue our virtual exploration here as we anticipate Hidden Canyon can’t stay closed indefinitely, it’s just too good of a hike to abandon!
It is just over a mile from the trailhead to the mouth of Hidden Canyon, however once you enter the canyon, the official trail may end but there is over another half mile or even a full mile of exploration available to you depending on your level of skill. This journey isn’t offering the sensational panoramic views of Angel Falls or even Canyon Overlook. You will be sandwiched between the towering walls of the peaks on either side of you as you venture into the crack between them.
Weeping Rock Trailhead serves as a launching point for multiple trails in this area. This spot will be a popular shuttle stop and parking area. Enter the canyon opposite the river’s Big Bend area and begin the paved East Mesa Trail as it alternates north and south driving deeper into the canyon and approaching the northwest face of Cable Mountain. The climb gets steep and the switchbacks are many, you will feel the strain on this trail but take your time and enjoy the scenery.
Turning that last switchback before butting up against the base of Cable Mountain you will see the unpaved, sandy Hidden Canyon Trail splitting off to your right. A series of smaller, tighter switchback steps are directly ahead of you and bring you up through the trees where you will emerge at the carved trail that hugs the sheer mountain wall. Safety chains are in place and the path is wide enough that it can be comfortably walked but will give you a view of the incredible exposed heights just off to your side.
The trail officially ends at the mouth of the canyon just after you cross the stream bed. Looking north you peer down at the trailhead and the Virgin River’s Big Bend just to the west. Upwards you see The Great White Throne to your right and Cable Mountain to your left. Beyond the available views, the canyon offers hidden sights as far in as you are able to hike.
Shaded from the hot desert sun, you may want to scramble the boulders or explore deeper into the canyon. About a half mile back there is a 20’ natural arch next to a large moss and lichen covered “green wall”. This typically denotes the end of the canyon as venturing beyond it requires technical skills.