Three Refreshing Hikes to Cool-off the Kids this Summer

Hiking in Southern Utah is a great way to explore the region and experience the beautiful scenery. Trails in and around Cedar City include everything from arches to hoodoos, ancient forests, narrow canyons and majestic overlooks. As the summer heats up (the kids start to get bored), we are all looking for ways to cool-off and recharge in the great outdoors. Check out these refreshing hikes leading to our favorite water features to lessen the boredom, cool off the kids and explore Southern Utah.

Hidden Haven (Benson Creek)

Tucked away in Parowan Canyon, this little gem is a perfect spot to spend the afternoon. The hike winds through a wildlife study area, forest, and meadows to a small hidden canyon highlighting a waterfall in the summer months and weeping rocks year-round.
Trailhead: Between mile markers 8 and 9 on Hwy 143 (Parowan Canyon).
Trail: This moderate trail is about 1 mile roundtrip. Use care the last 100 feet due to the uneven trail.

Cascade Falls (Dixie National Forest)

Complete with incredible views of Zion National Park and Kolob Terrace, this easy trail leads to a beautiful waterfall (the outlet of Navajo Lake). The route overlooks the southern edge of the Markagunt Plateau and ends at a rocky ledge with water tumbling down from a limestone cave. The water travels well over a mile through underground lava tubes before reappearing at the falls. This water then continues to become the north fork of the Virgin River and later a part of The Narrows.
Trailhead: End of Forest Service Road #54, just east of Navajo Lake (Cedar Canyon).
Trail: This trail is easy to moderate in difficulty and about 1.2 miles roundtrip. There are a few steep drop-offs, watch the little ones.

Kanarraville Falls (Bureau of Land Management)

A local favorite, Kanarraville Falls is a waterfall hike with the bonus of a slot canyon. Your feet will get wet (be prepared with the right shoes), but that is part of fun! With two waterfalls, and one that makes the perfect slide, the kids are bound to have a fantastic time. Note: leave the pup at home for this one; Kanarra Creek is Kanarraville’s water source and they like to keep it clean.
Trailhead: In Kanarraville, turn east at 100 North, continue to parking lot. (Be aware there is a $10 parking fee).
Trail: This moderate hike is about 5 miles roundtrip. Again, be prepared to get wet. Do not hike if raining; the danger of flash flooding is real.

Bonus: Playing Unplugged this summer? Hiking one of the above trails earns you a Trail Blazer Badge for the Cedar City Area Play Unplugged! Stop by the Iron County Visitor Center (581 North Main Street) and show us your favorite photo from your adventure in exchange for your badge! Learn more about Play Unplugged at here.

As always, be prepared with a good supply of water, hiking shoes, cell phone, maps, and sunscreen and remember to follow the Leave No Trace principles. For more information stop by the Iron County Visitor Center in Cedar City or visit our hiking page.

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