Before it became a national park in 1919, it was called Mukuntuweap National Monument, a name given by the Southern Paiute tribe that means “straight canyon”.
Some people thought that Mukuntuweap was too hard to pronounce and that Zion, a Hebrew word for “sanctuary” or “refuge”, would attract more visitors.
The park’s elevation ranges from 3,666 feet to 8,726 feet, creating different habitats for plants and animals.
The park’s varied habitats and location along the Colorado Plateau, Great Basin, and Mojave Desert regions make it a hotspot for birdwatching.
Bats are important pollinators and pest controllers in the park. They feed on insects, nectar, and fruit, and help spread seeds and pollen.
The park’s first human inhabitants were nomadic hunter-gatherers who left behind petroglyphs and pictographs on the canyon walls.
Around 500 CE, two groups of people settled in the area: the Virgin Branch Puebloans and the Fremont Indians.
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