Last Updated: January 2, 2018, 7:29 pm

Locals Only: Adventure to natural wonders within The Subway

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Video by Spencer Ricks

How to visit The Subway:

-First, you’ll need a permit to visit The Subway. Enter into the $5 lottery to win a permit for The Subway. The National Park Service only allows 80 people to visit The Subway each day, so it may take a few times before you win a permit.
-Once you have a permit, choose the kind of route you want to take to The Subway. You can either take the relatively easy “bottom-up” hike along the creek, or the technical “top-down” trek from the top of the canyon. The top-down hike is over 9 miles long, and requires a 60-foot rope. 
-Before you go, check the weather. Don’t attempt to reach The Subway if rain is in the forecast, as flash floods can be deadly. 

Bottom-up hike:
-Park at the Left Fork Trailhead, which is clearly labeled 8 miles up Kolob Terrace Road from Virgin. 
-Start hiking on the trail, which takes you down a steep hill and into the Left Fork creek bed. 
-When you reach the creek, turn left and start following the creek as it continues to the north east. 
-After 3.3 miles of hiking, you’ll reach The Subway.
-Follow the same path back to your car.

Top-down hike:
-Because this is a one-way hike, your group will need to have a car parked at the Left Fork Trailhead before you start hiking.
-Park your other car at the Wildcat Canyon Trailhead, which is clearly labeled 15.5 miles up Kolob Terrace Road from Virgin.
-Start following the trail through the forest.
-After hiking 0.2 miles, there is a fork that is clearly labeled as the Northgate Peaks Trail. Turn right here. A few steps further, there will be a sign that reads “Subway Route.”
-Follow The Subway trail down the hillside and across the slick rock. Watch for cairns to mark the path.
-The trail eventually leads down a steep hill into the canyon. 
-Follow the canyon for several miles. There are a few places where, depending on the time of year, you’ll need to swim through. 
-Right before you reach The Subway formation, there is a 30-foot rappel. Use your rope to descend into The Subway. 
-From The Subway, hike the 3.3 miles along the creek back to your car at the Left Fork Trailhead.

When hiking to The Subway, make sure to bring topographical maps and other route descriptions so you don’t get lost. The trail is fairly straightforward to follow, but there are a few places where it can be easy to take a wrong turn.

Locals Only is a series by the Dixie Sun News exploring unique places around DSU.

Ep. 1: Nudie Pools
Ep. 2: Little Black Mountain
Ep. 3: Snow Canyon Caves
Ep. 4: Warner Valley

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