Zion: A Natural Temple

One of the most photographed views in Zion National park, and perhaps all of the parks, is the view of the Watchman from the Canyon Junction Bridge. Although it has been shot endless times, and you are sure to be shoulder to shoulder with other photographers during sunset, it is still something everyone must do when visiting the park. My favorite spot is right at the center of the bridge where the river leads the eye to the Watchman in the background. 

This year marks the National Park Service's 100th anniversary and Nat Geo photographer Jonathan Irish is celebrating by visiting every U.S. national park in the span of one year. Follow his travels as he visits 59 parks in 52 weeks.

The nine-mile roundtrip hike to the Subway requires route finding, boulder scrambling, and wet shoes as you cross the North Creek several times over the hike. 

However, the payoff is one of the most fascinating natural formations you will ever see. 

Best place to photograph the Subway is from the inside looking back down the tunnel-like formation. Because it can be hard for light to reach the area, a tripod is a must.

The West Rim trail is a classic Zion hike that starts at the Grotto and offers amazing views down Zion Canyon. 

Although the hike is great on its own, many people hike up the West Rim trail to reach one of Zion's most exciting places, Angel's Landing. 

Photography by Jonathan Irish 

United Photo Press 2016