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The Greater Zion Visitor Center is a must for anyone interested in exploring the natural wonders of southwest Utah.

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Gunlock State Park

Gunlock Reservoir and Gunlock State Park lie just far enough away from the hustle and bustle of the metropolitan areas of St. George. With incredible views and warm water, this remote lake is the perfect spot for a day in and around the water. Bring your own water toys or rent onsite.

This Utah State Park recently gained acclaimed with its waterfalls – an occasional and temporary occurrence when rain and runoff cause overflow of the reservoir. Although it doesn’t happen every year, you’re most likely to see it in late winter and early spring.

Things To Do

Paddleboarding and Kayaking

Thanks to the size of the lake and its more off-the-beaten-path location, this is a great spot in which to use paddleboards and open kayaks. Fewer boats make for calmer waters. Take off from the sandy beaches and explore all the popping-out-of-the-water rock formations. Bring your own water toys or rent kayaks, paddleboards, and water carpets from the park.

Man kayaking at Gunlock State Park

Boating in Gunlock

Gunlock may be the smallest of the three state park reservoirs in Greater Zion, but there’s still plenty of room for speed boat activities and jet skis. Boat rentals can be obtained from local shops.

Fishing in Gunlock

There’s also plenty of fishing to be done here. Take advantage of the cooler early mornings and late evenings when the lakes largemouth bass are more active and feeding. A Utah fishing license is necessary; a nonresident three-day permit is $24, and seven-day is $40.

Swimming in Gunlock

A generous portion of the lake is set aside just for swimming. For hours of enjoyment, bring a picnic lunch and set up a spot under one of the shade pavilions. Take a boat or kayak to the far side of the lake and jump off the fun rock formations. Parking is conveniently located right next to the water and pavilions.

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Camping in Gunlock

Gunlock State Park offers the darkest skies of all the state parks in Greater Zion. Come wish upon a shooting star or bring your camera and tripod for some Milky Way photography that will make all your friends jealous.

Gunlock State Park’s new campground allows online reservations, Gunlock offers travelers in tents, RVs, and trailers access to 30 new campsites complete with water, power, and a nearby dump station. 

Purchase a State Park Pass

Day and annual passes to Utah State Parks are available at the gates of most parks. Day-use passes for Gunlock State Park are available online and can be purchased before you arrive, but are only valid for the day of purchase. Purchase does not guarantee entry if the park is temporarily closed due to capacity, special event or other reason.

Learn More

For more details on Gunlock State Park, visit their website.


Vortex Trail

Only 11 minutes away from the lake, this hiking trail sweeps you away from the beautiful water into a world of red sandstone and strange rock formations. Large patchwork patterns on the sandstone surface give the appearance of scales on some giant dragon’s back. Two large towers of stone with rounded tops sit adjacent to one another and look like a double-humped camel at the midpoint of the hike. The ultimate destination of the hike is a large, stone bowl that looks like a sinkhole, roughly the size of a small house.

Kayenta Art Village entrance sign

Kayenta Art Village

This incredible village is set at the foot of towering red cliffs and is only 16 minutes from Gunlock. Grab lunch at their restaurant, Xetava Gardens Cafe. Drop in on painters or potters and see their genius creations coming to life, or pick up a framed photo of the area as a souvenir. With a handful of fine art galleries, arboretum and labyrinth, and other sculptures, there’s lots of art to see here. 

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(801) 538-7220
– Shade pavilions
– Bathrooms
– Boat launch and dock
– Paddle board and kayak rentals

Park Hours: 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

– $10 day use per vehicle
– $5 per day per vehicle for seniors 62+
– $100 Resident Annual Pass
– $150 Non-Resident Annual Pass (No senior discount)
– $50 Resident Senior Annual Pass
– $20 per night for camp sites
– $15 five-day drone permit