Angels Landing trail closed after damage to metal chains

Hikers walk along the narrow fin of Angels Landing in Zion Utah
(Image credit: Jordan Siemens)

The Angels Landing trail at Zion National Park has been closed due to damage to the safety chains that help hikers ascend the sandstone mountain. National Park officials haven't revealed the extent of the damage, or what it believed to have caused it, but as KUTV reports, the narrow trail is closed until further notice. 

The National Park announced the closure on Twitter, but has yet to give an indication of when the trail might reopen. 

The closure will be bad news for anyone planning to strike the hugely popular trail off their bucket list this week. If you have a permit to hike Angels Landing over the coming days, we'd recommend contacting the park by phone on 1-435-772-3256, or by sending an email using its online form.

Angels Landing is Zion's most popular trail, but also its most deadly, with 14 deaths reported since 2000. The route is extremely steep and narrow, with hikers often forced to walk in single file as the trail gains 1,500ft n elevation over just 2.5 miles.

Chains run along the exposed ridge to provide a handhold, but the trickiest part of the route comes earlier, beginning at Scout Lookout, the saddle that connects the West Rim Trail to the ridge.

The popularity of the trail led to the introduction of a permit system in 2020, but it was temporarily closed at the height of the coronavirus pandemic due to concerns about lack of room for social distancing, and the risks of the virus spreading via people touching the chains.

The permit system is now back in place. The park holds seasonal lotteries for visitors who want to plan their trip in advance in the knowledge that they'll be able to hike Angels Landing on a particular day, plus a day-before lottery that allows you to apply for a permit to hike the next day. You can enter both lotteries online once the trail is reopened.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.