I talk to people about the St. George area a lot—on Instagram, over the phone, at travel shows and many other ways—and the same questions come up in a variety of forms: “Where are the secret spots?” “Where are the really cool hidden places?” “What is a spot most people don’t know about?”
As a disclaimer, I would just like to point out that nothing in this series is going to be completely secret or new. I’m not literally exploring and discovering uncharted territory where no human has been before—sorry if that’s what you were hoping for. What I will be giving you is pretty great though, if I do say so myself.
The trouble with living so close to Zion National Park is that when people come here for outdoor adventure, they’re mesmerized by the siren of Angels Landing. It’s tough for other adventures to compete when stacked up against that hike, but I assure you there are some pretty amazing things off the beaten path in the St. George area.
The places I’ll be taking you in this series are where 98% of visitors will never go or even know about.
Our First Gem, Yant Flat
It’s a gem worth a king’s ransom and one that’s unlike the place I will shortly compare it to—and doesn’t require a permit to visit.
If you’re interested in exploring natural wonders in the Southern Utah area, then you’ve undoubtedly heard of The Wave—and for good reason. It’s one of a handful of iconic spots that everyone and their dog wants to see and photograph. I will admit that I haven’t been to The Wave yet, but it’s on my list—even I’m not above a cletie now and then. I have seen many shots of The Wave though, and the real selling point of it is the swirling colors and rolling shape of the rock in the area. It’s truly beautiful and worth all the praise it receives. It should also be noted that it’s extremely difficult to get a permit to see the way.
But enough about The Wave. What I’m really talking about is something akin to it. Yant Flat is located just north of St. George and takes 45 minutes to reach the trailhead. After an easy mile and a half hike, you’ll reach sloping and rolling rocks of swirling colors. It’s a thrill to climb among them, find unique spots, and see how creatively the rocks have been painted by nature. It’s a playground for adventure-seekers and an awesome photographic opportunity.
I’m planning to make more trips out there to explore the east of the main area and to catch “the golden hour.” Hopefully I’ll see you on the trail when I do.
Map & Directions
For a good map of the hike and specific directions visit our trails website and use the interactive map.