|Right Fork of North Creek
Length: 11.5 miles round trip
Photo Tour: - View
Trail Map: Zion National Park Trails Illustrated - Buy
Description: The Right Fork of North Creek is a marvelous waterway, full of sandstone and waterfalls. Greenery is everywhere in the canyon, lush and out of place in the desert—everywhere except for Zion National Park. There are dozens of plunge-pools and small falls along the route up to Barrier Falls, the most incredible of them being Double Falls, just over half a mile downstream from Barrier. This is an incredible canyon to explore, and has attracted many visitors for generations. Along the route, canyoneers can expect to gain approximately 750 feet in elevation. This is a canyoneering route that ensures that all who enter will get wet, scratched up, and tired. Water obstacles, boulder obstacles, and brush obstacles litter the rarely-used path. It is recommended to stay in the waterway as much as possible in order to keep the fragile ecosystem on the banks as pristine as possible. There are semi-slot sections of this canyon, where the walls become narrow and potentially flashflood-dangerous during storms.
Right Fork Trailhead
This is a parking lot on the Kolob Reservoir Road, 1.25 miles south of the Smith Mesa junction with the Kolob Reservoir Road. The road is located atop a large slope, requiring canyoneers to descend 200 feet into the river basin before they begin their trek upriver.
Right Fork and Left Fork Confluence
Only a little way down the trail, at the bottom of the river basin, the Left and Right Forks converge and flow south. Hikers who are intent on following Right Fork should stick to the eastern current, following it up into the canyon.
This wide canyon might seem more like a valley when hikers first encounter it off to their right as they hike and wade upstream. It is very wide, and only slightly deeper than it is wide, and if visitors have time on the route back, can provide some exploration.
This is considered the most scenic and photogenic of the falls within Right Fork. A decent-sized fall spills into a large pool, which then spills over the edge of a thin, overhanging shelf of sandstone to the second pool below. The trail continues above and to the right of Double Falls.
This marks the end of the route, as it is too dangerous to try to climb the slippery sandstone here. Hikers must turn and go back the way they entered. Take a few minutes to relax and enjoy the scenery.