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Heavy Traffic Expected in Zion on Weekends Through March

March 14
23:43 2014

Thanks to spring break, unbeatable weather and the sold-out Zion Half Marathon, Zion National Park expects heavy traffic on weekends through March. Be prepared for long lines at the entrance stations and limited parking. Carpooling is strongly encouraged.

Zion TrafficShuttle bus service in the park doesn’t start until April 1, so Zion Canyon is open to traffic through the rest of the month. Parking lots and pullouts in the canyon fill fast on weekends. Parking outside of designated areas could lead to a costly citation, so don’t even think about it. Illegal parking causes safety hazards, impedes emergency response and can damage drainage systems and vegetation.

The park service warns that active traffic control may be in force along Zion Canyon Scenic Drive over the remaining weekends in March. That means up to 2-hour closures at the turn-off onto Scenic Drive from Highway 9. Park visitors should be prepared to visit other areas of Zion and to park further away from their planned starting point when parking areas are full.

Zion Half Marathon

Zion Half Marathon

Zion Half Marathon

With the Zion Half Marathon on Saturday, March 22, it’ll be easier to get around on foot. In fact, that’s what they say.

A man on foot will see more, feel more, enjoy more in one mile than the motorized tourists can in a hundred mile.”–Zion Half Marathon website

The 2014 race is sold out. While the race itself takes place outside the park, people coming to the area for the race won’t miss out on Zion. Runners, their families and friends will all want to experience the Zion National Park that weekend.

The Zion Half Marathon was started in 2012 by Vacation Races, the same folks who bring the Lake Powell Half Marathon to the Page Lake Powell area in the fall.

Zion Shuttle Service

The Zion National Park shuttle system was implemented in 2000 to alleviate traffic in Zion’s main canyon during the busy season. It currently begins in April. As park visitation keeps growing, the busy season gets longer every year. A transportation study by park management is currently underway to possibly expand shuttle services in 2015. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, be prepared for heavy traffic and parking problems in Zion Canyon through the next three weekends.

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