The Best Waterfalls in Southern Utah
Kanarra Falls Hike
One of Southern Utah’s hidden gems streams just north of Zion National Park - Kolob Canyons in Kanarraville, UT. The trail starts out by hiking up the old access road (approx .8 miles) until you reach the canyon. This beautiful slot canyon features a photogenic hike upstream with the inspiring scenery. There are paths alongside most of the river stream, but in our hot summer months, walking through the stream might be just what you’re looking for! Soon enough, you’ll find the slot canyon and this is where the water gets colder. At approx 1.6 miles you’ll see the first of two waterfalls, a 15-foot gorgeous view! You can hike up over the waterfall with a leaning-log ladder and rope handrails to keep hiking up the canyon if you wish. However, the hike to this waterfall is beautiful enough if you did wish to turn around. Going on up, you would find a natural water slide and another waterfall! A $12 permit is required to hike this trail and is limited to 150 hikers a day. It is recommended to purchase in advance to guarantee you have a ticket the day you desire to go. Purchase permits online here.
Zion National Park
Emerald Pools is a great hike with different options, from strenuous and steep to short and easy. The hike offers 3 hikes; Lower (easy, 1.2 miles round trip), Middle (moderate, 2 miles round trip), and Upper (strenuous, 3 miles round trip) pools. The trailhead is across the highway from Zion Lodge inside of the park. The Lower Pools are suitable for young children and even strollers, while the Upper and Middle get steep and slippery as you climb in the ridge, but the trails are clearly marked and easy to follow. The Middle trail takes you to the top of the Lower Pools waterfall for viewpoints, and the Upper Pools takes you to a massive 300 ft cliff with a waterfall that pours into a beautiful pool of water.
This beautiful, isolated, casading waterfall is located about 30 minutes outside of Toquerville. It is about a 6 mile drive on a rough, bumpy dirt road and best found with a SUV, truck, or ATV with 4-wheel drive. The first 2 miles are the hardest. While the road to get there is a bit challenging, you will be welcomed with the rare beauty of Southern Utah. Toquerville Falls is a two-stage waterfall with a big swimming hole at the bottom. It can be slippery climbing down and around the falls, so be careful. But this waterfall is oh so worth it! If you’re feeling brave, the waterfalls give a great back massage, too! Typically, the falls may only have a few other people enjoying it, as it’s harder to get too and not that well known. There will be limited to no cell phone service. This is a a very fun 4-wheel afternoon trip with the surprise of the beautiful waterfalls to cool off in.
Duck Creek, Utah
Cascade Falls is an easy 1.2 mile roundtrip hike in Cedar Mountains west of Duck Creek, UT. This trail is well maintained and also has a platform for viewing the falls at the end. The cliffside trail provides great views over Zion National Park and Kolob Terrace and is also a great birdwatching hike from June-October. During winter months the hike is buried in snow, so the falls are only reachable in summer. The waterfall runoff is from sinkholes in the Navajo Lake and re-emerges where this hike is in the limestone cliffside and the best time to see the most water would be in spring and early summer.