Middle Emerald Pools Trail at Zion National Park To Be Restored Thanks to $1 Million Grant

The George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation has awarded the National Park Foundation a $1 million grant – the largest private contribution ever awarded to the foundation to enhance the national parks in Utah. The grant, part of the National Park Foundation’s Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, is earmarked not only for extensive critical repairs and upgrades at Zion National Park, but also for programs to provide Utah’s youth with opportunities to visit the parks and programs in their home state.

The Middle Emerald Pools Trail – one of Zion National Park’s most beloved hiking trails – has been closed since December 2010 when heavy rain caused rockfalls and extensive mud slides destroying much of the trail. The Eccles Foundation grant will fund needed repairs and improvements to the trail. With constraints requiring extensive reengineering, realignment and reconstruction, the anticipated completion date for the trail project is in December 2019, at which time it will reopen to the public.

The grant will also make it possible for up to 20,000 school children from throughout Utah – including many who have never before visited a national park – to participate in engaging, hands-on, in-park experiences through programs such as the National Park Foundation’s Open OutDoors for Kids initiative and Concrete to Canyons.

“Thanks to funding from the Eccles Foundation, Middle Emerald Pools in Zion National Park will get an essential infusion of support to restore and reopen the trail,” said National Park Foundation President Will Shafroth. “Private support like that from the Eccles Foundation plays a vital role in meeting critical needs within our parks.”

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