Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Jug Handle Arch - Zion NP

I visited Zion National Park last week and it was very relaxing.  Although, my muscles are still sore.  One of my hikes was to Jug Handle Arch.  I've seen this arch on many of my recent trips and when hiking South Ariel Peak it was clear that I could hike up close to the arch.  Joe Braun has a great description of this hike on his site.  He also includes directions on how to get above the arch for a different perspective.  I chose not to do that on this hike because I was saving my legs for the very strenuous hike I planned for the next day.

I didn't take the same route Joe shows.  Instead, I started my hike on the same path I took to hike South Ariel last month.  Joe's route might be easier.  I was just familiar with my route.  Here's the view from where I parked.

The arch is visible when you reach the small ridge above the Keyhole Canyon crossover.

Here's a nice looking hoodoo I passed along the way.  Maybe it's not technically a hoodoo, since it doesn't have a harder rock on the top.

The hike is easy enough.  After crossing Keyhole Canyon and reaching the eastern side of Aires Butte, just walk up the ridge.

I could have hiked closer but my knee was already hurting and I didn't want to jeopardize my hike the next day when I'd be visiting Nippletop, Separation, and Lost Peaks in one big loop - all visible in this photo.

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