The Emerald Pools located in Zion National Park are some of the most beautiful natural wonders in the world. It’s like an oasis hidden in the middle of the desert. Every year, hundreds of thousands of visitors hike to the pools, which has three levels: the Lower, Middle, and Upper. Those who have hiked the trail to all three pools say that it’s the experience of a lifetime. But adventuring through Zion isn’t without risks.
Unfortunately, it’s also an experience that has proven to be fatal. On average, about two to three people die in Zion each year, and a great number of rescue calls rangers receive are from the Emerald Pools trail.
What can begin as a memorable family vacation or epic bucket-list adventure can soon turn into a nightmare.
Although the trail is not all that strenuous, there are still steep drop-offs and slippery terrain. One false move and you can go tumbling down an embankment of get swept down a steep cliff. Even a seasoned hiker or canyoneer can plummet to their death from just a simple stumble on the rocks or slipping on algae.
Throughout the years, about a dozen people have lost their lives while exploring the Emerald Pools, mainly from getting too close to the ledge and falling over the ledge.
There is also the risk of a flash flood. When hikers get caught in a flash flood, they are often flushed down the canyon and either drown or plummet off sandstone cliffs to their death.
Of course, countless people hike this trail every year without any problem. When you decide to enter into wild country, you must enter at your own risk. Nature is unforgiving and unpredictable.