Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
200.00 ft (60.96 m)
Trail type
7.00 mi (11.27 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Red Cliffs Desert Reserve is a fantastic recreational area located right in St. George, Utah. This is a great place for some safe desert activity that you can experience without feeling like you have to be somewhere remote. Here you can mountain bike, hike, rock climb, ride horses or take the dogs on a walk. The views from above the city are really great, and you can see down into Snow Canyon State Park and even overlook old lava fields. Within the small network of trails in the reserve is the 7-mile round-trip hike to Scout Cave using the Chuckwalla Trail.

Starting out on the Chuckwalla Trail from the parking lot, you'll immediately encounter a large area designated for rock climbing. After a short while you'll reach a fork in the trail; take the North Crossing Trail, which is clearly marked. Soon you'll pass the Turtle Wall Trail, which has some terrific sandstone formations. When you reach Paradise RIm Trail you will encounter the views of the town below and begin to walk along the canyon edge. Stay on the canyon rim heading north and you will see a marker for the Scout Cave Trail.

The coolest feature on this trail is definitely Scout Cave and the section of the trail leading up to it. The route descends a bit into a ravine where the features become more surreal and unique. The cave itself is tall and not terribly deep, but the view from inside looking out is quite impressive, especially considering the easy access and proximity to town.

There are some back country campsites available in the reserve, and these are marked on the informational sign at the trailhead.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Not Required


Close to town. Lots of options. Unique features.


Exposed hike.

Trailhead Elevation

3,103.00 ft (945.79 m)


Backcountry camping
Rock climbing
Bird watching
Big vistas
Geologically significant

Suitable for



Nearby Lodging + Camping


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