Day Trip Spotlight: Pipe Springs National Monument
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Day Trip Spotlight: Pipe Springs National Monument

Canyons Boutique Hotel’s location in Kanab Utah makes it the perfect basecamp for exploring all that Southern Utah has to offer. Enjoy a day trip to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, take a scenic drive through beautiful alpine mountain forests and red rock deserts, or spend a day giving back while enjoying some time with the adoptable animals at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary.

Visiting one of Utah’s Mighty 5 national parks is often on our visitors’ bucket lists. Zion National Park is the closest, at just over an hour from our Kanab lodging. Bryce Canyon is only a little further away, while Capitol Reef National Park is still close enough for a day trip, at around three hours from our Canyon Hotels.

But what many visitors don’t know is that there’s another National Park Service site located even closer to our hotel. Pipe Springs National Monument is just 25 minutes from Kanab Utah. This unique national monument has a long and complicated history and is a great spot to spend an afternoon during your stay. Keep reading to learn what you need to know to plan a visit during your Canyons Boutique Hotel stay.

A  History of Pipe Springs National Monument

Pipe Springs National Monument is located in Northern Arizona, just over 20 miles from our hotels near Kanab Utah. The location that is today the national monument has a long and storied history

For many centuries, the region was home to a number of Native American tribes. They frequented the area and even built small communities that relied on the freshwater spring located there. 

More than a thousand years after Native Americans first came to the area, the first European settlers arrived. During the mid-19th century, a group of Mormon pioneers from Northern Utah arrived in Northern Arizona. They settled near the spring and established a cattle ranch. 

Raids on the ranch by Native American tribes were frequent during the Black Hawk War, and tensions ran high between the tribes and these pioneers. A fort was soon built on the site to help protect the ranch and the settlers. It quickly became an outpost for travelers passing through the area, and a source of trade and commerce for the people who settled here. Eventually, members of the Paiute Native American tribe settled in the land surrounding the ranch. In the late 1880s, the Mormon pioneers lost ownership of the ranch, and much of the land became the Kaibab Paiute Indian Reservation. But in 1923, the site of the ranch and fort were set aside to become a national monument.

Pipe Springs National Monument Today

Today, Pipe Springs National Monument offers visitors a chance to learn more about the history of the site and of the many different groups of people who have lived in the region. 

Start your visit in the Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians Visitor Center and Museum. The museum is divided between information about the Native American tribes that first settled here and the story of the Mormon pioneers and the fort. 

Outside of the museum, visitors can wander the remnants of the fort, also known as Winsor Castle. You can join a ranger-guided tour to learn about the building of the fort and what life was like there. In the summer months, rangers lead additional talks and demonstrations, such as displays of pioneer and Native American tools and crafts. 

Besides the fort, there are also two preserved cabins that give visitors a chance to take a closer look at what the life of those early Mormon pioneers was like. An orchard and garden still grow on the property, with Native American and pioneer crops. There’s also a corral where you can see horses and cattle.

Entrance to the visitor center and museum is free. If you want to visit the fort and grounds, you’ll need to pay an entrance fee of $10 per person or present a valid national park annual pass, also known as the America the Beautiful Pass.

Planning Your Next Stay at One of the Best Lodges in Utah

A day trip to Pipe Springs National Monument is a great addition to your stay at one of the best lodges in Utah. If you’re short on time, its close location also makes it easy to spend a morning at the national monument before heading elsewhere for the rest of the day.

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