UPDATE: Zion-Mount Carmel Highway to close for 3 weeks for repairs

ROAD CONSTRUCTION UPDATE-  The Zion-Mount Carmel Highway will officialy reopen on Saturday, April 27th at 8 a.m. MST. During the first day of resumed operations, park rangers will be present on both sides of the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel to help escort oversized vehicles between the hours of 8 am and 7 pm. 

Starting Sunday, April 28th, the Tunnel will then be open to oversized vehicles from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and will continue with this schedule until the fall.

After rockslides occurred in Zion on March 2nd, leading to the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway being severely undercut, par officials have announced that the road will be closed for repairs starting April 9 for approximately three weeks. 

After the rockslides in March, the road was closed for roughly a week, while officials assessed the damage done. Since the rockslide, the popular route in Zion National Park was opened to one lane of traffic. Starting Saturday, April 6th, the road will be fully closed as crews prepare the area for repairs. The closure will stretch from the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel to Canyon Junction.

Based on the severity of the undercut on the road, a section of the remaining road will be removed completely so a new retaining wall can be built. The closure is anticipated to be in place for three weeks so Federal Highway contractors can complete the job without interruption. 

Vehicles can still enter from the east side of the park if they fit the criteria of being smaller than 7 feet 10 inches wide and 11 feet 4 inches tall. They will only be allowed to access the east side of the park from the entrance to the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel. All vehicles will have to turn around once they reach the tunnel due to the closure.

While construction will close a large section of the east side of the park, all hiking trails and canyoneering routes will remain opened. Those needing to obtain permits from the main canyon or those wanting to leave vehicles there will have to drive around. Permits can also be found at the Kolob Canyons Visitor Contact Station which is located off of I-15 Exit 40.
Zion Jeep Tour

Alternate driving routes that run east and west will be available from Hurricane to Fredonia, Arizona via Highway 59, as well as State Route 14 from Cedar City to Long Vally Junction and Highway 89. Those traveling to visit Zion via I-15 can still access the park as usual by traveling through Springdale on SR-9.

Park facilities will be running as usual within the canyon including facilities found at the Kolob Canyon are as well as the Kolob Terrace area.

Those visiting should continue to expect some trail closures within the main canyon as well. The Kayenta Trail and Upper Emerald Pools Trail remain closed after a landslide damaged both trails in July of 2018. As the area has continued to settle, these closures remain in effect for the safety of park visitors. The East Rim Trail, including total access to Hidden Canyon and access to Observation Point from the main canyon remain closed. As areas dry out, park staffers will be assessing each trail to determine the next steps and timelines in reopening the popular hiking areas.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.