At 9:00 a.m. this morning, Zion National Park temporarily suspended the “24-hour” rule to allow hikers into The Narrows via the Bottom-Up hike. Kudos to the Park Service for allowing hundreds, if not thousands, of people to hike the Narrows while the Virgin River flirts with the 140 CFS level for a few days, en route to its normal summer volume. Had the Park decided to strictly enforce the “under 140 CFS for 24 hours” rule, many, many people would have missed a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see one of the most stunning hikes in the world.
While the Bottom-Up Narrows hike is now open, those wishing to hike The Narrows in its entirety, from the top-down, must wait a few more days. The Park predicts issuing top-down day hike permits beginning Thursday, 6/30, and overnight backpacking permits Saturday, 7/2. If your group is planning a top-down Narrows hike soon, be sure to make a Chamberlain’s Ranch shuttle reservation soon, as we are likely to book up quickly.
On a related note, now that the Bottom-Up Narrows is open, the technical canyoneering route down Mystery Canyon should also be open – if you can get a permit. ZNP allows 12 people into Mystery Canyon daily. The ZNP website calendar shows Mystery permits are not currently available, but I think there’s a good chance the site may not be up to date. If you’re gunning for Mystery, check in with the Backcountry Desk and see if you can grab a spot.