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Top 5 Recreation Spots In Zone 6

The newest extension of the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve

Delicate species like the dwarf bear-poppy and the desert tortoise aren’t the only things the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve protects – access to recreation hotspots are maintained and protected by this organization as well. Beloved by locals and visitors alike, you can find several popular recreation spaces within the reserve – in Zone 6, specifically – as well. Here are a few of our favorites:

1. Bear Claw Poppy Biking/Hiking Trail System

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Bear Claw Poppy is a versatile, multi-entry network of trails with varying options for all skill sets. You can enjoy the trail on bike, on foot, as a loop, or as an out-and-back. Entering at the Gap Trailhead is the best way to have an enjoyable, downhill cruise. If you’re up for something more challenging, opt for more technical routes featuring steep hills such as Acid Drops, Clavicle Hill, or the 3 Fingers of Death.

2. Green Valley Gap

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Green Valley Gap has several hiking and biking options, but most notably, it has an excellent climbing area. You can take on several moderately challenging routes that traverse sandstone formations reaching up to 2,870 feet in elevation. This area is ideal for leisurely climbing. But, if you prefer machinery over manual navigation, you can close the gap via 800 feet of zipline

3. Moe’s Valley Bouldering

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This world-class bouldering spot is well-known and well-loved, as its placement in Climbing Magazine’s top 25 bouldering locations list reflects. With its easy accessibility and routes graded from V0 to V14, climbers of all skill sets are welcome. Here, you can clutch killer crimps on classic Utah red rock. Trust us – it’s even cooler than the license plate. 

4. Stucki Springs Biking/Hiking Trail

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This trail is a lesser-known part of the Bear Claw Poppy trail network. Great for biking and hiking, Stucki Springs is 14 miles long with cliffside views and frequent encounters with the threatened desert tortoise – keep stewardship best practices in mind if you see one. The tortoises might be the only other creatures you encounter on this trail though, as traffic is so minimal that it’s almost spooky. (If ‘spooky’ didn’t rhyme with ‘Stucki’, you’re saying it wrong!)

5. Zen Biking/Hiking Trail

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Though this is a hikable trail, Zen is best known and most frequently used for biking. About six miles of moderately strenuous trail take riders around and through towering rock formations, like the Hippopotamus Caves, while offering a bird’s eye view of the city of St. George. Find your inner zen and go with the stellar flow this trail offers. 

Getting to know Zone 6

Zone 6 is the newest addition to the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve, spanning over 6,000 acres. This acreage was granted in 2021 as part of the Northern Corridor roadway agreement in order to protect delicate species and preserve recreation opportunities. 

The Zone 6 expansion isn’t physically connected to the original, northern section of the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve. It’s closer to the Arizona border and lies just south of Santa Clara, as illustrated here

The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve is about so much more than borders, though; recreation, stewardship, and environmental preservation are key aspects of Greater Zion’s culture. The Zone 6 expansion is just one example of locals’ and visitors’ dedication to putting the Land of Forever first and preserving it for future generations. 

We encourage you to visit every fascinating edge of the Red Cliffs Desert Reserve from Zone 6 and beyond. Learn more about other recreation opportunities this area offers here.