Guide to Angel's Landing Permit System

Have you heard? There’s a new permit system in place for the infamous Angel’s Landing hike in Zion National Park. As of April 2022, you can no longer hike Angel’s Landing without proper permitting through the National Park service. This is largely due to the overall popularity of the hike, crowds, and risk involved when large crowds meet such narrow, deadly drop-offs. 

 


If you’re unfamiliar with this hike, Angel’s Landing is possibly one of the most well-known National Park hikes. Located in the extremely popular Utah park, Zion National Park, tourists come from all over the world to see the grand red rock formations towering above, and many to hike Angel’s Landing. The main draw of this hike is that it leads you to one of the highest points of the park, with the most iconic view looking down into the valley. The view is truly breathtaking, however it is also considered to be one of the more dangerous hikes in all of the National Parks. This is due to the extremely narrow, steep ridges towards the top that require the use of chains. Typically the hike gets so crowded that on these sections, there will be lines formed of people waiting to take their turn carefully navigating the chains. Hence this new permit system. 

 


How It Works:


In order to complete any portion of the hike, you will first want to start by going to this website to check for permit availability. The permits can secure up to 6 people. There are two options when it comes to obtaining a permit: a day-before permit or securing one 2 months in advance. 


Day-Before Lottery Permitting


For the last-minute, spontaneous trip planner, this may be your best bet at obtaining a permit. There is a daily lottery for the following day that you can apply for through the website linked above. This needs to be done between midnight and 3 PM the day before. You will first need to create an account through recreation.gov and pay the application fee. This fee is NOT refunded, even if you do not win the lottery. Once you enter the lottery, you can expect to receive an email by 4 PM that day indicating whether or not you won a permit for the following day. Obviously this is not a guaranteed way to obtain a permit, but if you miss the window for obtaining a permit in advance, it’s the last option. 


Seasonal Lottery Permitting


The other option for securing a permit further in advance is through the seasonal applications. On the recreation.gov website, there is a schedule listing the exact time windows for application for future season dates. Here are the dates you need to know for obtaining a permit in advance:



January 3, 2022 - January 20, 2022

Seasonal lottery for spring dates (hikes on April 1 – May 31, 2022)

January 25, 2022

Notification of results of spring seasonal lottery

April 1, 2022 - December 31, 2022

Day-before lotteries (apply one day in advance of desired hiking dates)

April 1, 2022 - April 20, 2022

Seasonal lottery for summer dates (June 1- August 31, 2022)

April 25, 2022

Notification of results of summer seasonal lottery

May 11, 2022

Planned trail maintenance (no permits issued)

July 1, 2022 - July 20, 2022

Seasonal lottery for fall dates (hikes on September 1 – November 30, 2022)

July 25, 2022

Notification of results of fall seasonal lottery

October 1, 2022 - October 20, 2022

Seasonal lottery for winter dates (hikes on December 1, 2022 – February 28, 2023)

October 25, 2022

Notification of results of winter seasonal lottery


The permits are also divided into three different time categories for starting time: before 9 AM, between 9AM-12PM, and after 12 PM. For a stronger likelihood of securing a permit, the seasonal lottery is recommended, especially if you apply the very first possible day for the dates you’re visiting the park. 

 

Tips for Lottery Success:


  • Set a calendar reminder to apply for the seasonal lottery as soon as you possibly can. Stay on top of it so that you can increase your chances of scoring a permit.
  • Be flexible with your dates/time slot. You may not be offered your ideal day/time slot but try to plan your other park activities around your permit slot. 
  • If you’re doing the day-before lottery, apply for each day you plan to be in the park. This will increase your odds of winning it once. 
  • Know that even if you don’t obtain a permit, there are still plenty of other incredible hikes and sites to see within the park. For other ideas and a detailed park itinerary, check out our Woman’s Guide to Zion.


We hope this proves helpful in navigating this new lottery permit system. Is Zion National Park on your adventure bucket list for 2022?

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