2022 Field Guide - Zion National Park Forever Project

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Dear Friends, Welcome to the 2022 Field Guide. This book provides our intention and strategy towards some of our parks’ greatest needs, connecting us across the greater Zion landscape understanding conservation and visitor experience through a regional lens and collaboration across jurisdictional boundaries. Our approach is built upon the Forever Project’s 5-year strategic plan (2019-2024) which anticipated the need for new solutions to extend the integrity of the Zion experience for generations to come. At all levels of the program, you will see significant impacts emerging through these efforts. The sun is out and shining this morning at Park HQ. Our office frames Watchman, the cottonwoods just budding out, two young riders peddling the campground, a lingering scent of shoulder season, but we know what’s coming.

With you, we are growing generational-stewardship for our public lands. Zion is the sacred center of this work. As you know, we have significant work ahead of us. Thanks for rolling up your sleeves and getting your hands in the dirt. We’re just getting started.

Mark Preiss Vice President of Philanthropy

Stephani Lyon Director of Philanthropy


Like our gateway neighbors, we’re preparing, setting plans in place, and getting Zion ready. We do so with great resolve, understanding the importance of this shared responsibility, as a foundational part of who we are as citizens of the United States.

The Alter of Sacrifice, Zion Canyon

“Without a shred of disguise its transcendent form rises preeminent . . . To the eye prejudiced by the soft blues and grays of a familiar Eastern United States or European district, this immense prodigality of color is startling, perhaps painful; it seems to the inflexible mind unwarranted, immodest, as if Nature had stripped and posed nude, unblushing before humanity . . . There is almost nothing to compare to it.” – Frederick S. Dellenbaugh, 1904



Sunset at Kolob Terrace.


SUPERINTENDENT’S WELCOME Over the past decade, Zion National Park has faced numerous challenges ranging from landslides, aging and failing infrastructure, to assuring an authentic, quality visitor experience for millions annually. Meeting these demands and the increasing pressures stresses available resources. Through your generosity with the Zion Forever Project, our combined efforts, despite those challenges, strengthens our resolve and continues to affirm that partnership, collaboration, and a unifying desire to conserve these lands are a formula for continued success.

With funding and support from the Zion Forever Project and its partners, success for our parks means many things. For example, cleared, repaired, and resurfaced trails; Junior Ranger books and badges to guide our future rangers; continuing to tackle more than $60 million in backlogged maintenance projects; rangers engaging with eager students in the classroom and in the field experiencing the wonders of the parks for the first time. This support manifests in next-generation park facilities and transit; experiencebased college internships; scientific studies in the field and in the lab that apply to our long-term conservation of park resources; honoring the people and history of centuries before, and planning for the century ahead. This support fosters the conservation and management of more than 150,000 acres of land in our three parks and beyond, including the plants, animals, and cultural resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the American people. The National Park Service is honored to have a nearly century-long partner– the Zion Forever Project– to carry the park stewardship banner alongside us. I encourage you to read this year’s guide and discover how you can join in our efforts.

Jeff Bradybaugh Superintendent Zion National Park


The list of accomplishments resulting from these partnerships and collaboration could fill this book! They touch every aspect of your experience in Zion, Cedar Breaks, Pipe Spring, and the surrounding public lands and communities.

ZION FOREVER PROJECT EXECUTIVE COUNCIL Lyman Hafen, President / CEO Mark Preiss, VP of Philanthropy Jill Burt, VP of Retail Sales Tracy Jones, VP of Finance

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Billie Rayford, Chair Julie Saemisch, Vice Chair Jeff Carlson Dirk Clayson Scott Gubler Greg Last Shain Manuele Kyle Wells

ZION CIRCLE FOUNDERS Scott & Jesselie Anderson Kem & Carolyn Gardner Gail Miller Family Dave & Teri Petersen Tom & Jamie Love Mitt & Ann Romney Brian Donnell & Carla Sanda Kevin & Stacy McLaws Gertrude Corwin in memory of John Donnell – long-time supporter of Zion National Park

KEY SUPPORTERS Greater Zion Convention & Tourism Utah Office of Tourism Utah Clean Cities Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation Mystery Ranch Parks Project National Park Foundation National Geographic (Outside Academy) Concept 360 CSAA Insurance Group Impact Photographics Iron County Restaurant Tax Program George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Foundation

Raintree Foundation Peregrine Fund Gimbel Foundation The Conservation Fund Thomas O. Brown Foundation LeRay McAllister Critical Lands Fund Utah Tech University (formerly DSU) Southern Utah University Dixie Applied Technology College Utah State University University of Utah Brigham Young University Four Peaks Brewing Company Wild Tribute Zion Cycles Anonymous



Zion National Park

Cedar Breaks National Monument

Pipe Spring National Monument



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Introductory Letter Superintendent’s Message Founders Circle & Key Supporters Table of Contents

IMPROVIN G TO DAY 12 14 16 17 18 20 22 23 24 25

Improving Today 2021 Impact East Zion Initiative East Zion Mountain Bike Trail System Tribal Relations Gathering Pa’rus to Sinawava Trail Planning Zion Scenic Corridor Trail System Cedar Breaks Infrastructure Cedar Breaks Solar Power Cedar Breaks Volunteer Campsites Cedar Breaks Ranger Information Booth

INFO RM IN G TO M O RROW 28 30 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39

Informing Tomorrow 2021 Impact Ungulate-Carnivore Interactions in Zion Education Programs Concrete-to-Canyons Virtual Classrooms Field Trips Rangers in Classrooms Junior Rangers IIC Interns Teacher Workshops

P ROTECTIN G FO REVER 42 44 45 46 48 49 50 51 52

Protecting Forever 2021 Impact Pipe Spring Centennial - Longhorn Acquisition Tracking Bats Cedar Breaks & Pipe Spring Night Skies Paiute Youth Camp Ringtail Cats in Buildings Fossil Preservation Regional Recreation Management Planning Conservation Easements / Zion Regional Landscape

CLO SIN G 54 56 58 60 62

The Zion Regional Landscape Photos Partnership Spotlight Park Stores Letter from the President / CEO Ways to Give / Contacts

Top: Governor Spencer Cox at ground-breaking ceremony for the new visitor center at Cedar Breaks National Monument. Left: Vicki Varela, Managing Director of the Utah Office of Tourism, speaks at the ribbon-cutting of the first 10 miles of new mountain bike trail at East Zion.

Crews from the American Conservation Experience (ACE) work diligently on bike trails near the eastern border of Zion National Park.


Sustainability • Infrastructure • Maintenance Trails & Roads • Enhancements • Accessibility



Kathleen Gonder Superintendent Cedar Breaks National Monument

Thank you friends and neighbors for raising and donating over 3 million dollars toward the design and construction of our new Visitor Contact Station at Cedar Breaks National Monument. This gift was the largest donation to date for the Zion Forever Project. It unlocked matching grant funds from community partners like Iron County, the Visit Cedar City/Brian Head Tourism Office, and the Utah State Tourism Office. It also tapped into federal NPS Centennial Challenge matching funds that helped see the project through to completion. In 2023, we will be excited to welcome you to visit and enjoy this new facility. But we’re not done yet; there is always more work to do. Not just at 10,000 feet in Cedar Breaks National Monument, but in the plains of Pipe Springs National Monument and amid the majestic towers of Zion National Park. Please accept my sincere appreciation, not just for what you have already helped us accomplish, but for what we will continue to achieve together.

2 New


Visitor Centers in Development


kW of clean energy


Species of Plants & Animal Protected


Miles of New and Repaired Hiking & Biking Trails


Zion’s East Side Visitor Center Funding Needed: $300,000 Updated in 2013, Zion’s Foundation Document, created by park leadership, identified the need for additional visitor resources. In 2016, the park reaffirmed the need for a new visitor center to serve a growing population of visitors entering the park from its eastern border. Today, with more than 5 million park-goers, the call for relief is more urgent than ever. Approximately 20% or 1 million visitors annually, arrive in Zion from the east entrance. There are currently no resources to serve them. Thanks to the continued efforts of a dedicated group of stakeholders, donors, and supporters that is changing. With funding led by Kane County and supported by community partners, commissioners secured $15.5M through Utah’s Community Impact Board, now transferred to the local service district. This bond, along with gap funding provided by Zion Forever Project, will provide the base

needed to finish planning and ultimately constructing Zion’s new visitor center. Even though planning and construction are assured, additional support is required to complete all the accompanying details to fulfill the long-term vision. Staffed by National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management, Kane County, and Zion Forever employees, this multi-agency location will provide visitors everything they need to feel comfortable and connected during their trip around the region. “The only orientation available to visitors is the ranger in the park entry booth who can only spend one or two minutes with each car. Building a new visitor center will help extend and disperse visitation beyond the park gates, featuring four seasons of new programs, farmers market, orchards, and other place-based active learning experiences.” –Jeff Bradybaugh, Superintendent, Zion National Park More than just a building, the new visitor center will become a regional home for new trails, new experiences, next-generation learning, and a central transit hub with green shuttles transporting visitors around the southwest desert. With your donations

to this project, the next round of fundraising will complete interior displays, parking lots, restroom facilities, interpretive signs, park museum exhibits, and the high-tech equipment needed to make sure the park’s new theater is ready to share information about Zion with the world. The 17.7 acre site was donated by the McLaws family who see the gift as an inspiration to the next century of park planning. This new facility is fully aligned with the park’s general management plan and helps the land agencies respond to the growing visitor needs on Zion’s highelevation plateau. With a planned groundbreaking in 2023, this multi-year project leaves a legacy that will define the park experience for decades into the future.




Funding Needed: $45,000 This past October, a historic ribbon cutting opened the first 10 miles of new mountain biking trail situated beyond the park’s borders on Zion’s east side. Utilizing a coalition of unprecedented land and trail easements donated by willing landowners, the trails are free to ride and fully open to the public. Alongside Zion Forever donors, the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation, the National Park Foundation, and Utah’s Kane County supplied a combined total of $1 million to complete the first phase of trails. With the first section of trail laid and features complete, this second fundraising phase seeks to continue with an additional 25 miles of

mountain-biking trail and trailhead parking, signage, and restroom facilities. With the first ten miles completed, the American Conservation Experience (ACE) have already broken ground on phase II and your continued support will provide trail crews and engineering experts to make trail in some of the nation’s most rugged terrain. The new trails will include routes for riders of all abilities, distinct trail features, and offer previously unseen viewsheds as riders wind their way along the eastern borders of the park. Once the mountain bike trails are complete, crews will focus south of the Zion Scenic Byway planning and constructing more than 40 miles of new hiking trails joining existing trails in the park. These new trails will offer visitors meaningful access to Zion that protects the land resource and encourages responsible use. Without your donations, trail and accessibility projects would not be possible. Your gift enhances the legacy of the East Zion Initiative helping visitors connect with the land while having worldrenowned outdoor recreation experiences. “When we talk about the reason the Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation exists, projects like this define our purpose. Creating meaningful access to Utah’s amazing landscape and doing it through partnership with so many amazing stakeholders, it is a fulfillment of our purpose. We can’t wait to see the progress continue and seek new ways we can continue to work together.” –Pitt Grewe, Executive Director, Utah Office of Outdoor Recreation


A Zion Group Gathering

Funding Needed: $24,000 Zion National Park is the ancestral homelands to numerous Native American Tribes. Evidence for human occupation in Zion Canyon spans thousands of years. Zion National Park communicates with at least twenty-seven affiliated tribes ranging from the nearby Southern Paiute, to tribes and pueblos across the western states. Seldom do opportunities arise where park leadership has the opportunity to meet with tribes in person to informally discuss a variety of topics related to the park. This project would provide for a much-needed informal gathering to continue growing relations with the associated tribes. “Relationships with Native American tribes are critical to our success. Their knowledge and insights are invaluable in park planning. Collaboration and on site communication with subject matter experts about best practices allows for fully informed decisions for the future of the park.” –Courtney Mackay, Cultural Resource Program Manager, Zion National Park The idea for this program came from a 2020 project where tribal leadership

gathered in the park to discuss best practices for the management and treatment of archaeological sites with rock writing, modifications and inscriptions. The gathering was beneficial in understanding the similarities and differences between park policies and tribal policies concerning these resources as the two management styles are not always aligned. One example presented at the gathering included the challenges for site management. A sandstone rock writing panel had broken off of a wall and fallen to the ground within a documented archaeological site. Park archaeologists intended to retrieve the segment and place it in collections, concerned it would be vandalized or stolen. However, Native American tribal leaders offered a different perspective. Rather than collect the panel, they suggested it be left in place to allow natural erosion to occur. The removal of the panel from its original location would cause more damage than leaving it to natural processes. With your support, park staff and tribal leaders will congregate for a three-day meeting in Zion Canyon, where they will discuss future park plans and share insights. They will have the opportunity to discuss best practices on several subjects while gathered on ancestral lands. Your gift supports the future of Zion’s management planning, ensuring the Native American perspective is welcomed and respected.



PA’RUS TO SINAWAVA Planning a Multi-Use Trail

Funding Needed: $750,000 Constructed in 1932, and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Floor of the Valley Road, also known as the Zion Canyon Scenic Drive, provides direct access for millions of visitors each year, deep into the heart of Zion National Park. The distinctive red cinder road runs alongside the waters of the Virgin River where guests can experience some of the most diverse flora, fauna, and geology found anywhere in the world. Along the awe-inspiring drive, millions of park-goers discover lush ferns and giant cottonwoods growing near prickly pear cacti and banana yucca, backed by swirling red and white Navajo sandstone cliffs. The canyon is home to hundreds of animals, some of which, like the Virgin River Spinedace, are only found here in the Zion region. The roughly 7-mile roadway is traditionally accessed by park shuttle during peak

visitation and by private cars during the park’s winter months. Cyclists and hikers are also allowed but must be careful as they compete with a steady flow of large double-trailer shuttle buses and cars on an extremely tight and twisty road. Amidst the growing trend of biking and walking up the canyon, it’s time to re-examine the need for a multi-use trail that allows hikers and cyclists direct access without having to compete on the busy road. Identified as a potential need in 2008, limited budget and other project priorities mean there is currently no funding available to jumpstart the planning and design process of what is expected to be a five-year, multi-phase, legacy project. With the total project slated to cost approximately $10 Million, this first round of funding begins a two-year process of planning and designing a trail that would eventually become an extension of the Pa’rus Trail (the park’s existing multi-use trail). The 1.7-mile paved trail, beginning near the Zion Canyon Visitor Center and ending at Canyon Junction, would extend approximately 8 miles up-canyon in a meandering scenic route to reach the Temple of Sinawava and the popular Narrows hike. This highly


“It’s certainly a project we have been aware of for some time. It is a worthy project and a difficult one due to the sensitive nature of the park, its ecology, and the historical features of the current roadway, parking areas, and stone retaining walls. These are important park features and architecture that are critical to maintain.”

technical engineering project would include compliance studies to identify natural and cultural resource preservation requirements before project construction begins.

maintenance costs to protect park infrastructure well into the future.” –Dr. Bry Carter, Chief of Facilities Management, Zion National Park

The new trail would mean more than an opportunity to provide better and safer access as visitors trek along the valley floor; it would also be a chance to design and construct new utility and sewer lines running underground in the same construction route. This would provide modern relief to Zion’s strained and aging septic and wastewater systems, furthering the park’s commitment to environmental protection and public health.

The first two years of this design process will focus on the infrastructure and planning needed to engineer and construct this legacy initiative. While some areas of the valley provide easy access with obvious paths forward, other more daunting locations will require new bridges, walls, and platforms.

“Anytime we find a project that allows us to solve multiple problems at once, that is a great success. We save resources and effort during design and construction; we limit our impact on the land and the park’s sensitive habitat; and we reduce life-cycle

Your contribution to this project ensures multi-modal access to Court of the Patriarchs, Emerald Pools, Angels Landing, the Narrows, and all the essential trails and features that speak to the essence of our shared mission within these cherished natural resources.


Dr. Bry Carter, Chief of Facilities Management, Architecture & Engineering

MULTI-USE TRAIL ALONG ZION SCENIC CORRIDOR Funding Needed: $75,000 State Route 9 is a 57-mile long state highway taking the majority of park visitors off the I-15 interstate and into Zion National Park. The entire road is designated as the Zion Park Scenic Byway and is part of the National Highway System. According to the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT), each day approximately 27,000 vehicles travel the paved two-lane highway to, from, and through Zion National Park. Those wishing to travel by bike or foot compete with constant traffic and are forced to stay inside a narrow bike lane that doubles as the highway’s shoulder lane. Thanks to your support and a recent grant award of $10.8 million, relief for hikers and cyclists is coming soon. A paved multi-use trail was initially conceptualized by the Zion Regional

Collaborative, a diverse group of stakeholders who meet to discuss regional planning issues. This collaborative group, funded in part by Zion Forever supporters, issued a feasibility study that conceptualized a wide paved trail running from the gateway community of LaVerkin, south of the park’s border, all the way to the gates of Zion National Park. UDOT awarded the funds to Greater Zion (Washington County’s Tourism and Convention Office), which provided $2.7 million in matching funds for the fiveyear project. The first phases of the project will focus on planning and design of the double lane paved multi-use trail, but the awarded grant will only cover the initial build. Additional support is needed to develop trail signage, bathroom facilities, and other interpretive and scenic elements of the trail. “Residents and visitors will have improved access to recreational opportunities, efficient and economic transportation options for employment and enjoyment with an overall goal of reducing traffic


Your contributions will create alternative access to the park and offer those using mobility devices of all types a safe, alternative, and environmentally friendly way to reach park gates. Large infrastructure projects like this one direct the future of the National Park experience.

Above: The Virgin River corridor leads to the mouth of Zion Canyon and the South Entrance of the park. The multi-use trail will follow the path of the river, serving residents of gateway communities and providing visitors a new way to access the canyon. Photo by Kevin Christopherson Below: Overview of the feasibility study conducted by the Zion Regional Collaborative.


and parking congestion in the Town of Springdale and the entrance to Zion National Park.” –Emily Friendman, Coordinator, Zion Regional Collaborative

CEDAR BREAKS INFRASTRUCTURE Atop the Markagunt Plateau, at just above 10,000 feet of elevation, sits Cedar Breaks National Monument. Over the past decade, visitation at Cedar Breaks has increased more than 50%. Thanks to Forever Project supporters and matching funds from the National Park Service, Iron County, and the National Park Foundation, the park is constructing a new home for visitors on the mountain. As the new Visitor Contact Station rapidly approaches completion, continued visitation increases mean we must continue to directly invest in this high altitude sub-alpine gateway to all of Southern Utah’s parks and monuments. These improvements make work easier for park staff and volunteers, enhancing the visitor experience by providing increased access to rangers and the outdoors. With many

The natural rock amphitheater in Cedar Breaks National Monument records 60 million years of geologic history. of the park’s trail improvement projects already funded in 2021, the Park Service is looking at ways to better engage with the public in a massive 6,000+ acre landscape. The following projects bring the second phase of foundational investment into one of the region’s most precious resources.

A gateway to parks of the southwest, Cedar Breaks has long been a jewel of the region.


Funding Needed: $19,700 New infrastructure and park improvements require power and energy to make them work, and in a rural high-elevation site like Cedar Breaks, that can be challenging. Luckily, being situated high above at over 10,000 feet, Cedar Breaks is an ideal site to utilize solar energy. “The monument really is the perfect place to install these new panels. Our altitude means less atmosphere to compete with, which means the panels are more efficient and collect more energy. The cost savings over the life of this project are significant saving taxpayer dollars and providing a better experience.” –Adam Peterson, Chief of Facility Management, Cedar Breaks National Monument The project will see 28 solar panels mounted to the park’s main Ranger Station. The highly visible location has a roof pitched at the perfect angle to collect maximum

sunlight. The southern facing panels also demonstrate the National Park Service’s commitment to clean energy and offer the ability to show a working example to the public. The solar panels are already purchased and secured on-site. This project funds the tools and expertise needed to install them properly. The panels provide direct power to the building and help reduce the monument’s dependence on the traditional electrical grid saving thousands of dollars. In total, over the life of the project, the combined power of the 28 solar cells will generate more than 11,000 kW of electrical power saving more than $115,000. This move to renewable energy reduces carbon emissions equal to removing approximately 178 cars from the road or about the same amount of carbon sequestered by 1,000 acres of U.S. National Forest. Bringing this and other critical infrastructure projects to the mountain ensures that Cedar Breaks remains a cherished site today and, with continued investments in green technology, also tomorrow. A focus on sustainable energy is critical to the future of park planning.



NEW VOLUNTEER CAMPGROUND AT CEDAR BREAKS Funding Needed: $231,870 Ranger stations and fee booths are not the only areas that need improvement at Cedar Breaks. New volunteer campsites will also dramatically improve the park visitor experience atop the plateau. The Cedar Breaks volunteer campground was initially constructed 30 years ago, but was never completed. Park volunteers are referred to as VIPs (Volunteers-In-Parks) living up to the very important name. Currently, there are only two permanent RV stations at the site, and the dozens of volunteers and park partners it takes to operate Cedar Breaks each season take up much-needed campsites from the visitorpaid campground. With the volunteer campsites already partially developed, this project has the opportunity to have a massive impact without further disturbing the land. “Park volunteers and community partners like scientists from Utah State University are essential to our park operations. In busy seasons their efforts increase our capacity to operate and offer exemplary visitor services.” –Brent Everitt, Chief of Visitor Services, Cedar Breaks National Monument

The new sites are more than just RV pads. They offer NPS the opportunity to install 500 feet of new and improved sewage lines providing a necessary update to the sanitation infrastructure. The project will see new stripes and directional arrows painted onto the roadway. Park staff will also erect new wireless access points significantly improving coverage in a highly isolated area. In the center of the loop, the park service is planning a new group site to accommodate larger groups like students and professors from Utah State University and others who help with Cedar’s annual BioBlast focused on covering the diverse biology found in the region. New campsites mean more volunteers and a more engaged, safer, and impactful visitor experience. VIPs at Cedar contribute thousands of hours of effort from Cedar’s noted summer Wildflower Festival to their high elevation night sky talks. Your donation to this project is more significant than paved RV pad sites. It enhances the National Park experience for everyone.


A PERMANENT FEE BOOTH AT NORTH VIEW Funding Needed: $24,000 At the far northern end of the monument where Cedar Breaks meets with the roads to the Brian Head Ski Resort and the town of Panguitch, is the North View Overlook.

Already being piloted, a temporary fee station has been constructed at the northern site. An old maintenance shed was redesigned and repurposed into a temporary booth using park service ingenuity and resourcefulness. It’s a great start, but more is needed. Your support would mean the construction of a new permanent fee station at the North View Overlook, outfitted with solar panels, propane heating, and insulated walls. Future plans include constructing a new

Portable fee booth currently in use. bathroom building and providing additional programs and services to park visitors. This new permanent structure does more than provide shelter and comfort for the rangers; it lets them meet the public headon. The permanent ranger posting will increase fee collection, disperse visitors, and allow for equipment storage so that new park programs can take place throughout the monument. It will mean multi-season interpretation allowing park staff to provide talks and interpretive programs even during the winter season when snow limits vehicle access but brings thousands of skiers, snowshoers, and snowmobiles. Our continued investments in Cedar Breaks National Monument will ensure the park remains a pride of the local community and visitors alike.


There is no infrastructure at North View Overlook; there are no restrooms, no shade, no seating, and indeed no ranger booth. From this isolated intersection, hundreds of thousands of visitors gather each year to peer into 60 million years of geologic history exposed by the slow but continuous forces of erosion. Even though the park’s main entrance is south near Point Supreme Overlook, this northern view is a popular entrance for the visitors coming in from the North.

Top: School children across the region experience Zion on field trips, many for the first time. Left: Connecting with rangers in the resource expands the horizons of young learners.

Right: NPS rangers provide interpretive information to visitors from all over the world.


Junior Rangers • Concrete-to-Canyons Distance Learning • Continuing Education Field Trips • Classroom Visits



Omar Ramirez Assistant Manager Zion Forever Project

Towards the end of my sophomore year at Southern Utah University, I was informed of an internship opportunity with a career-driven pipeline known as the Intergovernmental Internship Cooperative (IIC). This initial summer job marked the beginning of my career path in public lands. During my internship at Zion National Park, my love for public lands grew deeply. I discovered the true meaning of stewardship through the various roles I undertook. Not only did I help protect park resources, but I aided and educated park visitors. Through informative activities such as trail roving, presenting drop-in programs, and working the information desk, I recognized individuals’ desire to learn. The internship eventually lead to an opportunity to wear the NPS grey and green. In that role, I was able to help educate the next-generation through new experiences: ranger talks, the Junior Ranger program, and the award-winning Concrete-to-Canyons program. There’s nothing like the feeling of witnessing young park-goers earn their badge as they learn a new concept, create a connection with Zion, see the stars, or experience a National Park for the first time. In 2020, I traded my ranger badge for one that will last forever. Serving as a member of the Zion Forever Project team, like you, I support the mission of informing tomorrow and now it is my everyday mission working alongside a fantastic team. So here’s to you! Your combined generosity and kindness has impacted my life more than you may know.




Hours of College Internships


Junior Rangers Across 3 Parks


Countries Reached with Distance Learning


Wayside Signs Tracked


UngulateCarnivore Interactions in Zion Funding Needed: $5,000

Understanding the relationship between predator and prey is important to wildlife management.

Perhaps no animal in Zion is more iconic than the Desert bighorn sheep. On Zion’s rugged east side, large groupings of sheep sit just off the road backed by swirling Navajo sandstone cliffs. Seemingly defying gravity, they effortlessly jump from ledge to ledge, easily navigating the precarious terrain. Seeing bighorns in the park is part of the Zion experience, but understanding them requires your support. Zion Forever Project has helped fund wildlife research and care programs for decades. Previous research efforts, using tracking collars, have helped locate and follow roaming bighorn and mule deer throughout the canyons. When the Zion bighorn sheep herd was affected with a terrible respiratory disease (Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae), Forever Project donors provided the equipment needed to capture, diagnose, and manage the herd’s health. Working in collaboration with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and Utah State University, this project goes beyond collar tracking. It puts scientists and researchers in the field to better understand the relationship between mule deer, bighorn sheep, and their main predator, the mountain lion. An investment into this project unlocks $143,000 in additional funding from the State of Utah, leveraging your gift to solve three years of much-needed park research. Funding will see graduate student scientists team up with park researchers in the field to monitor herd behaviors and gather

important observational data on reproduction, diet, and disease symptoms. Having boots-on-the-ground means observers can quickly diagnose animal mortalities to understand the underlying causes. The real- world experience prepares the graduate students for their degrees and highlights a future career path rooted in public lands and research. The findings from these studies will mean a deeper understanding of how the sizes and locations of mule deer and bighorn sheep affect the mountain lion diet and population status. The team will provide annual reports, update existing park research on disease monitoring, and improve our understanding of all three species. Your support means the continued conservation of one of Zion’s most important resources, its wildlife.





CONCRETE-TO-CANYONS Funding Needed: $60,000

A teacher and chaperone skill-building workshop takes place before the trip. This workshop is designed to familiarize and prepare teachers and chaperones for their roles and duties at camp and give them the confidence to teach camping skills to students. Park rangers meet with the students and their parents before the trip and share information about park resources, safety, and what to pack. Once in the park, students learn new concepts in a real-life setting such as how to pitch a tent, the difference between various habitats, the importance of night skies, and wilderness ethics. After visiting Zion, the students and rangers reconnect at National Park Service site near

Las Vegas. They participate in restoration projects and work with the greenhouse staff in that park. Once they are back home, students present and share their experiences and understanding with their families and the community. As the program has continued to grow and develop, park staff are excited to introduce elements related to social and emotional learning supplementing the traditional education looking at Zion as more than a classroom, but a space that benefits emotional health. Park leaders hope to expand the program in future seasons to include not only students from cities but also students from rural and tribal lands. With your continued support, this program, identified as essential to the park mission, will continue through the 2022 season sharing the Zion experience and ensuring the parks remain accessible to everyone. “I specifically want to compliment the rangers on their patience when working with our students . . . I am sure that this program will have a lasting impact on all of these students as they move forward. I am so grateful for this opportunity and am looking forward to a continuing partnership with C2C, Zion National Park, and Lake Mead National Recreation Area.” –Robert Mitchell, IB/Magnet Coordinator, Kit Carson International Academy


Concrete-to-Canyons (C2C) is Zion National Park’s best-known and most ambitious outreach program. With assistance from the Zion National Park Forever Project, students from Las Vegas and Mesquite, Nevada are invited to Zion National Park for three days of activities and camping inside the park. They hike with rangers, take part in lessons that connect their classroom curriculum with Zion’s resources, and become more comfortable and confident outdoors. Students’ transportation, camping supplies, and food costs are fully covered, making this trip available for all. The partner schools participating in this program are Title 1 schools, and most students have not visited Zion or a national park site previously.

VIRTUAL CLASSROOMS Connecting Students Around the World Funding Needed: $57,982

More than 5 million people visited Zion National Park last season, affirming it as one of the nation’s busiest parks. While everyone should have an opportunity to visit the park in person, for more than 8,000 students, Zion came to them. In 2017, Zion National Park piloted a virtual distance learning program initially designed to focus on young students as part of the National Park Service’s “Every Fourth Grader in the Park Program.” The lessons in that program have developed to include students of all ages, even reaching into adult education programs and assisted living initiatives. The program has also gone global streaming rangers worldwide into three different countries. For some elementary-aged students, the distance learning programs may be their first opportunity to meet a ranger, and for others, it might be an expansion of their park experience. When young children are involved, it’s essential to keep them interested.

Some lessons are set up like fun gameshows where students compete while rangers teach about history, biology, and the importance of wilderness conservation. The program and lesson plans are offered online to educators through the park and the Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration. With your support, park educators hope to continue expanding the program to focus on higher grades like middle and high school. Staff will work with the park’s resource divisions to create new programs connected directly to ongoing park science such as night sky monitoring, paleontology, and harmful algae bloom monitoring in the park. Seeing curriculum connected directly with ongoing and new park science shows students the relevancy of what they’re learning in classrooms and introduces them to internships and career paths within public land management. Ensuring the future of Zion’s management means providing the next generation with an appreciation for the outdoor world. With your gift to this project Zion rangers will be standing by on digital screens able to share Zion with students in the U.S. and around the world.

“With younger kids, we are constantly on our toes. There is always something fun for them to see on the screen, and this is where we can really be creative. With so much learning occurring online, it’s great to be able to keep the kids engaged.” –Cadence Cook Education Coordinator, Zion NP


Park Field Trips Funding Needed: $20,000 For some, Zion National Park is a memorable vacation or family trip. For students in Kane, Iron, and Washington counties, Zion is a backyard park. With limited resources, many of the students in Title 1 schools across the region have never had an experience in the park. As part of a three-touch curriculum-based experience, this initiative sees students from 40 different classrooms in the tri-county area come into the park for a full day of learning and fun. The field trips are led by rangers, volunteers, and interns, with a strong focus on park stewardship and Leave No Trace principles. Students learn about how the canyon was formed by “carving” their own small canyons in the sands of the riverbanks simulating the forces of erosion. Rangers use the surrounding landscape to connect Utah State standards to park resources and integrate emotional and social learning elements into the hikes. Beyond traditional lessons, students will also gather for quiet journaling time and sense-based nature exploration in the tranquility of Zion. These experiences introduce the concept of nature and the outdoors as a place for reflection and

deeper connection enhancing social and emotional learning, which is more crucial than ever. Your donations complement a grant from the National Park Foundation which matches an additional $20,000 to ensure the park can expand its team and reach more students. When students return to the classroom, they will be encouraged to share photos, write essays, and create presentations to share their experiences. The hope is this will be the first of many park experiences. Many students return to Zion with their families, and some will even get to meet rangers in their classroom or on TV through Zion’s pioneering distance learning initiative.



EVERY CLASSROOM DESERVES A RANGER Visits in the Tri-County Area Funding Needed: $24,000 Zion National Park has a strong partnership with classrooms and schools in the surrounding communities. For many years education rangers have visited 3rd, 4th, and 5th-grade classrooms and provided curriculum-based programs that connect the animals, plants, and rocks of Zion to their school lessons. Zion borders Iron, Kane, and Washington counties, which have a combined 40 elementary schools, most of which are Title 1, meaning many of the students come from underserved and lowerincome families. In Iron County, 7 of 9 elementary schools in the district are Title I, all elementary schools in Kane County are Title 1, and 14 of 28 elementary schools in Washington County are Title 1. Rangers coordinate with 4th and 5th-grade teachers in these schools and make a special effort to connect with schools not previously visited. In developing and presenting these programs, Zion can continue to deepen

its relationship with the local community and help create future park stewards. Rangers introduce 4th-graders to the Every Kid Outdoors pass allowing students and their families to visit parks for free. These presentations invite a new population of visitors to Zion and enable them to make their own deeper connections with a park that, for many of them, is less than one hour away. With this funding, seasonal park rangers will visit schools and bring curriculumbased programming to classrooms with the most need. Having a ranger visit a classroom is a fun, engaging, and impactful experience. When learning about the resources protected by the NPS, students become aware of the value of land conservation and management. Whether it be a new interest in geology, a deeper understanding of desert ecosystems, or a comprehension of the importance of Leave No Trace values, students complete these lessons feeling more connected to the land and feeling as though they too are protectors of these natural wonders. Your gifts are enhanced by an additional grant from the National Park Foundation, seeing this program continue to grow even more in the seasons ahead.


Our Future Park Leaders Funding Needed: $60,000 Junior Rangers come in all ages from 1 to 99. In truth, the program is available for children aged four years or older, and Rose Torphy became the most senior Junior Ranger when she received her badge at a young 103. For more than 90 years, youth education initiatives like the Junior Ranger program have been integral to any park experience. This past season, Zion National Park, Cedar Breaks National Monument, and Pipe Spring National Monument distributed more than 30,000 Junior Ranger books to those eager to earn the coveted Junior Ranger badge. Their adventure often begins at the Visitor Center, where children and their families stop to pick up their books. Each activity page takes the young learners through the park by completing fun assignments targeted towards elementary and middle school-aged youth. Some activities ask children to locate and learn about significant park sites, while others help them think more deeply about our natural resources and how we interact with them. It may even encourage them to pursue a career in the National Park Service. “It’s funny now to think back, but when I was younger, I was the first-ever Junior Ranger in my hometown park, Cowpens National Battlefield. That experience was an important

one that eventually found me working in the National Parks, conserving and curating some of our most cherished artifacts and art.” –Catherine Everitt, Museum Curator, Zion National Park, Bryce National Park, Cedar Breaks National Monument Once the book is complete, the real fun begins. Families return to the desk to meet with a ranger, have their Junior Rangers sworn in, and receive official badges. It is not uncommon for the entire room to pause, clap, and honor the new Junior Ranger as they get their photograph alongside their new, flat-hatted colleague. Your sustaining donations have provided funding for ranger staff, who present interactive programs and conduct touch tables for Junior Rangers and families visiting the parks opening youthful eyes to the natural world. This year’s season is graciously underwritten by Scott Anderson and Kem Gardner. Their donation honors the Utah State Legislature and their funding of a new PBS Film and other continued investments into public lands throughout the state. At an average of $1.50 for a book and badge, even a small gift can have a lasting impact.



COLLEGE INTERNSHIPS Real World Opportunities Funding Needed: $75,000 95,000 hours have been dedicated to public lands by Intergovernmental Internship Cooperative interns (IIC). The IIC program is a partnership between Southern Utah University, Utah Tech University, various land management agencies, outdoor recreation-focused businesses, foundations, nonprofits, and Native American tribes. This partnership develops challenging internship opportunities for students from a wide range of professional fields. Zion Forever Project is a significant funding partner each year. These paid internships are part of a more extensive network of corps (The Corps Network) who partner with the National Park Service and other land management agencies. These public-private partnerships engage and empower young adults 18-30, through programs that offer interns real jobs working alongside career employees providing them hands-on experience in everything from trail design and repair to data analytics. “It is about so much more than just work experience. This network of opportunities helps interns make real connections with professionals in their fields. The students operating in these positions are exactly what we are seeking for the future of our workforce.” –Amanda Rowland, Program Manager

Interpretation and Visitor Services, Zion National Park This year the staff at Zion, Pipe Spring, and Cedar Breaks will expand the program to focus on Native American youth through the newly established Indian Youth Service Corps. With your support, the new initiative will see Native American youth hired as interns working in various fields including valuable work in the field of traditional trades, such as masonry and carpentry work. These positions provide the skills needed to obtain job opportunities within the trades fields in the public and private sectors. Almost half of all IIC graduates transition to a position in public lands. “I was an IIC graduate here in Cedar City. That one internship opened me up to a world of options I didn’t think were available and helped me understand the importance of caring for these delicate environments. Now leading these crews, their value cannot be overstated. They can double or triple our workforce.” –Bryan Larsen, Natural Resource Specialist, Cedar Breaks National Monument This year, the Zion Forever Project was inducted into Southern Utah University’s prestigious Old Main Society for our continued support of the IIC initiative. With your help this season, we hope to maintain that margin of excellence for tomorrow’s leaders and for the parks.

HELPING TEACHERS TEACH Field Workshops Funding Needed: $25,000 Inspiring and connecting with students is part of the solution to future challenges. Equipping teachers with new tools and continuing education multiplies the effect and acknowledges that we never stop learning. Based on similar programs throughout the country, this new pilot program will see local teachers head into the park for a 5-day, deep dive into all things Zion. Rangers will meet teachers in the park for a workweek filled with seminars, lesson plans, field excursions, and opportunities for educators to discover NPS resources they can take back to their classroom. It is also an opportunity for teachers to share their experiences in school helping park leaders develop new curriculum. It’s about more than assisting teachers in the classroom. The program allows seasoned educators to earn continuing

education credits that can apply to their career advancement. Targeted towards teachers in Southern Utah, the initial class of ten will participate in elements focused on a comprehensive STEAM approach (science, technology, engineering, art, and math). Specifically, lessons will focus on ways to incorporate art into their science and technology curriculum. Beyond traditional classroom learning, the program will also share with teachers the importance of responsible stewardship and cultivate a passion for conservation and preservation of natural and cultural resources. Park data suggests that teachers were 40% more likely to utilize on-site, off-site, and even web-based park resources from similar programs after participating in the course. The ultimate goal is to establish long-lasting relationships with local educators fostering a place-based community of sharing and learning. Your donations help secure the materials, staff, and resources needed to plan for, host, and evaluate the program so it can continue to be refined in future seasons.



Above: The thin air at 10,000 feet helps make Cedar Breaks one of the best places in the United States for viewing the night sky.

Although bats may not rank high on the list of “loveable creatures,” their health is key to a healthy eco-system in the American Southwest.

Below: The pika, found in the highalpine terrain in Cedar Breaks, is sensitive to warming temperature from climate change.

Zion contains Jurassic fossils in need of protection.


Protecting Wildlife • Cultural Preservation Resource Restoration • Land Conservation Regional Planning



Scott Anderson President, Zions Bank

Kem Gardner President, Gardner Companies The following pages of this guide are park projects that will help define the national park experience for decades. These projects seek to conserve some of the park’s most sacred cultural and natural resources and experiences. Protecting Forever means providing the park and its dedicated team of NPS rangers, scientists, engineers, planners, and leaders with the unwavering support required to take on a new century of park challenges, not just in Zion National Park, but the surrounding regional landscape. We became involved with the Zion Forever Project in 2017 as Co-Chairs of the Zion Founders Circle. Since that time, because of your support, the Forever Project and its partners have accomplished some outstanding feats, ensuring access to some of this nation’s most cherished lands and bringing together a multitude of partners, agencies, and local communities to discover solutions to complex questions. We want to personally thank each and every one of you for your support of the Forever Project and its park partners. It will take the combined generosity of all who love these inspiring places to ensure their future success. We encourage you to celebrate our shared accomplishments of improved trails, new visitor centers, and the continued acquisition of critical conservation easements but know that this is a forever mission, and we have only just begun.


Sustaining the Native Voice by Funding Tribal Programs

Thousands of Acres of Vital Land Conserved

Leading Initiatives that Protect Views of the Night Sky

Funding Regional Planning for Zion’s Future

CELEBRATING A CENTURY Pipe Spring National Monument Funding Needed: $25,000 May 31, 1923 will mark the first centennial of Pipe Spring National Monument. Originally the home for the Southern Paiute Indians and their ancestors, the area was later settled by early missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as a working ranch. Signed into existence by President Warren G. Harding, the inspiration to designate the ranch as a park site came from Stephen Mather, the first director of the National Park Service. As he realized more visitors were beginning to go to the larger parks in the west. Pipe Spring served as a valuable interpretive cultural site and also provided a shady stop for picnics along the rugged trek in and out of the Zion region. One hundred years later, Pipe Spring remains a testament to the rich cultural heritage from the perspective of both Native Americans and early western settlers. It offers visitors a chance to experience a glimpse of life on the ranch, and part of that experience includes Texas longhorns. The park’s first noted European-American settler was James Whitmore, and he introduced the cattle he brought with him from Texas. Today the park’s aging longhorn, Whit (short for Whitmore) serves as part of a living exhibit where visitors can experience what the ranch was like in the 1870s. Whit carries his namesake horns with pride, but at age 16 with an average

lifespan of only 20 years, he could use some help. This project secures the acquisition of two new younger longhorns in advance of the monument’s centennial. The funding would provide for the purchase and care of the animals, and also create an interpretive podcast aimed at sharing the history of cattle and their role over time on ranches in the American West. Zion Forever and its supporters have been caring for the livestock at Pipe Spring for more than 30 years, and this gift will honor the park’s 100 years of service. “We see so much value in being able to provide these living exhibits especially in rural areas like the communities surrounding Pipe Spring. You would have to travel hundreds of miles to have a similar experience. It’s a real treat not just for visitors but for local communities as well.” – Amanda McCutcheon, Superintendent, Pipe Spring National Monument

Beginning with longhorns brought by pioneers from the midwest, Pipe Spring became an important cattle-ranching site, eventually becoming a point from which cattle drives began their long trek to railway locations.



Tracking Through Telemetry Funding Needed: $7,494 Some of Zion’s most exciting wildlife only emerge at night. With your help, we can track them wherever they might land.

This research has yielded important information for many different species of bats in the park. Several species impacted by white-nose syndrome in other states remain elusive to the survey team. To locate these hard-to-find species in winter, the teams will need to first capture the bats and then track them back to their winter locations. Capturing bats is

no easy task, but the minor annoyance to the animal yields essential information. Large nets are draped, often over pools and streams, and as the bats emerge and dart for insects, they become entangled in the artificial netting. In just a few minutes, a trained park biologist can calm the bat, ascertain its species, identify its sex, determine if it is adult or juvenile, and take key body measurements. With your support of this project, scientists using antennas and radio telemetry will track the bats to where they hibernate on the cliff faces and talus slopes. They will then team-up with climbers to study the located animals. In the bat world, this is groundbreaking research. “We are one of very few teams able to do this research. With thousands of miles of cliff-face and acres of lava fields, tracking them individually requires advanced technology and support. This research will provide valuable information to managers across the west trying to help these hardto-find species. All told, we have more research into the oceans than into the cliff faces these bats call home.” –Zachary Warren, Bat Biologist, Zion National Park Your donation to this project helps biologists gain valuable insight into the bat’s winter ecology throughout the region.


Past research, funded through the Zion Forever Project, helped the park establish a climbing program, which saw recreational climbers participating in meaningful research and data collection in close coordination with park scientists. Citizen climbers, working with park biologists, were able to identify and describe the first documented cases of hibernating bats in the park including ones on Zion’s tall cliff faces. Very little is known about cliff hibernacula, (places where bats spend winter). Every observation helps researchers learn more about their behavior and monitor for the arrival of white-nose syndrome, a fungal-caused disease that has deadly effects during hibernation.


Protecting Our Darkest Resource Funding Needed: $45,000 “I saw the sky that night in three dimensionsthe sky had depth, some stars seemingly close and some much farther away, the Milky Way so well defined it had what astronomers call ‘structure’, that sense of its twisting depths. I remember stars from one horizon to another, making a night sky so plush it still seems like a dream.” –Paul Bogard, The End of Night There are few places left in the United States where we can experience the stars as Paul Bogard describes them in his featured book, The End of Night. The Southwest happens to be one of those places. From the Kaibab Plateau’s plains at Pipe Spring in northern Arizona to the viewpoints above 10,000 feet at Cedar Breaks, visitors are treated to an incomparable night sky experience. Seeing the night sky is one thing, understanding and appreciating the beauty within is entirely different. “Most people don’t think of the night sky as a resource, as something to be conserved, but with increasing use of artificial light, our night skies really are under threat. They are important because they allow us to look backward in time and possibly find answers for our future. Being able to look

back 14 billion years into our universe’s past offers us clues to what might come next.” –Matthias Schmitt, Dark Skies Coordinator, Cedar Breaks National Monument Past project funding at Pipe Spring National Monument saw the construction of a dark sky viewing area interpreting not just the Greco-Roman understanding of the night but also highlighting Paiute Native American interpretations. At Cedar Breaks, seasonal night sky programs delight visitors with high-powered tracking telescopes following astronomical objects throughout the night allowing them to see the moon, planets, and on clear nights even nebulae and galaxies. With donor support, this project ensures the future of night sky education. Project funding gives the parks the resources they need to bring in expert astronomers and supply them with the tools and equipment required to run an entire season of programs including professional telescopes, binoculars, seasonal staff, and essential educational literature. The team also hosts and supports the annual Southwest Astronomy Festival where Cedar’s prized clear night skies are on full display. Who has not gazed into the night and felt both connected to the past and hopeful for the future? Your gift gives the gift of night.




Paiute Tribal Youth Camp Funding Needed: $15,000 Supporting Native American culture and their voice in public lands is critical to the National Park Service. Camp Kwiyamuntsi (K-camp), helps ensure youth from the Southern Paiute Nation stay connected with their culture and the land. Through an immersive summer camp experience, young tribal members from various bands of the Southern Paiute tribe meet with tribal leaders and land agency partners from the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, and the Bureau of Land Management. The dual experiences allow them to learn about the natural world and future careers in land management and leadership throughout the day, and at night share stories and practices led by the elders of their tribe. “A lot of the kids . . . their parents didn‘t grow up learning a lot of their culture and traditions. So when they come to camp, this is their first time hearing a lot of this stuff, and so their spirit is thirsty. It‘s hungry for this kind of knowledge. Coming to these camps, they get a chance to learn a part of their culture, and their history, and their ancestry. They learn they are related

to each other . . . they are like a sponge and must soak it all up, and it‘s something that they‘ll always remember. You‘re gaining all this knowledge to pass it on, because one day, all of us are going to be gone and it‘s going to be you teaching the youth. Thirty, forty years from now, maybe you‘ll be sitting back here teaching kids in this circle. You are going to be our Elders one day, and you need to learn everything you can about your history, your culture, your language.“ –Paiute Elder The Zion Forever Project continues to support this annual tradition connecting young members with their tribe and providing a traditional summer camp experience filled with hikes, rock climbing, and rafting. Gathered around campfires, the camp is an opportunity for some to hear and learn more about the Paiute language as it is used in conversation and traditional songs and stories. “I feel like that‘s something this camp does; it helps you build your confidence. Before these camps, I wouldn‘t have been able to tell anybody about anything about what my tribe does specifically, but now that I‘ve been here, I do know certain things to where I can make it seem like I‘m informed enough for them to think I‘m native enough in certain things.“ –K-Camp participant With your gifts, we will continue to support this gathering and its purpose forever.



Uncommon Ringtail Residents Funding Needed: $31,335 Although most Zion animals live exclusively outdoors, some find homes inside park buildings. One such inhabitant is the ringtail, an indigenous creature which looks similar to a raccoon and is a bit smaller than a house cat.

Expanding on two years of research, funding for this project will assist scientists collecting field samples and images to be further studied in the lab. Researchers are looking for droppings, chewed items, and other evidence that ringtails occupy space in a building. Additional information comes from motion-activated cameras recording ringtails feeding, playing, and resting. While cute, ringtails are predators that eat many kinds of small animals, including insects and mice. They also eat plants and food scavenged from people. Researchers can identify what they have been eating by testing the genetic sequences contained in their droppings. DNA sequencing can tell scientists about the diet, health and risks to ringtails living part or full-time in park buildings.

A member of the raccoon family, ringtails are among Zion’s cutest and most mischeivious inhabitants. In a single dropping there can be more than 100 sequences of DNA from ringtail meals and gut bacteria. In fact, ringtails can be sentinels that alert researchers to the presence of rare or hidden park plants and wildlife. “The science has come a long way. Previously, we would need to identify fragments in scat like a digested beetle leg or remnant hairs to know what species ringtails eat. New DNA techniques provide a more comprehensive catalog of ringtail diet, from tiny invertebrates to flowers and birds.” –Anna Willoughby, Graduate Research Assistant, University of Georgia Discoveries have already been made, including some positive revelations, like the ringtails’ impact on controlling the mouse populations in park buildings possibly reducing risks to people from the deadly Hantavirus carried by some mice. Ringtails can also prey on park pests like carpet beetles or non-native gerbils. There is also some cause for concern, as park ringtails can become infected by domestic dog parasites (worms, fleas, and bacteria). With your support, we can achieve new insight into these ecologically important animals and their use of human-built structures in the park.


To inform future management plans, the park needs your help to understand how building use changes ringtail behavior. Careful study of these unique creatures will help ensure park buildings aren’t hazardous environments for ringtails, and that these animals don’t pose health risks to people who use the buildings.

the park. The forces of erosion are ever-present, but new 3D modeling can help rangers and park scientists preserve samples and share them with the world.


Preserving Zion’s Fossils Funding Needed: $25,980 Millions of years of geologic history make up the canyons of Zion National Park. While many park-goers know Zion for its glowing red cliffs, there is a deeper story hidden inside the canyon’s thick rock walls. Over 180 million years ago, Zion was home to dinosaurs, reptilians, and small mammals, and while protected from collecting by federal law, most visitors would be surprised to learn the park is host to numerous fossil sites.

“Zion has an extraordinary record of the early Mesozoic during the origin and rise to dominance of the dinosaur through an interval of extraordinary climate change ranging from Late Triassic rainforests to the vast Early Jurassic deserts reflected by the fossil sand dunes forming the cliffs of Zion Canyon.” –James Kirkland, State Paleontologist, Utah Geologic Survey Due to their delicate nature, the park doesn’t advertise many dinosaur tracks or fossil locations, and many are also under threat from natural forces. Rockfalls, rain, and flowing water pose a real threat to many of the known sites in

Currently, scientists who can’t be in the field study photographs and detailed notes or, at great expense, make short visits to actual fossil locations. This project would fund the team and equipment needed to head into the backcountry and document many known and prominent sites in full 3D. The images would also be shared publicly online, aiding in the ability to conduct remote research in Zion. Using new modeling technology, images from high resolution cameras can be stitched together into “point clouds” and then into high-resolution 3D images of fossil sites and dinosaur tracks, aiding in faster track and fossil identifications. The models would also be rendered using 3D printers for museums and other interpretive park displays. This initiative will hire graduate-level research students through a park youthcorps science program giving them valuable experience in a highly competitive field. “Now leading these studies, I know the importance of internship opportunities like this. I participated in the same program when I was younger. It put me on a path to working in the parks. Having this kind of hands-on experience takes already qualified candidates to the next level in such highly competitive fields. It helps set students up for future success.” –Robyn Henderek, Physical Scientist, Zion National Park With your help, park staff and graduate students will do the hard work of crawling under cliffs, along the walls, and on the rock floors of Zion Canyon capturing detailed 3D models of some of the most exposed and vulnerable examples of fossils and tracks anywhere in the nation and then sharing those findings with the world.


A Seamless Visitor Experience Funding Needed: $80,000

As we continue to discuss and explore future needs for access to and conservation surrounding Zion National Park, we must undertake a cohesive planning process. One that ensures a seamless visitor experience, considering recreation, access, and planning from a regional perspective rather than as individual park sites. Nationally recognized, The Conservation Fund works across the country to protect America’s legacy of land and water resources through land protection, sustainable community and economic development, and leadership training emphasizing the balance of nature and commerce. This past season, the Zion Forever Project partnered with The Conservation Fund to embark on a regional planning process. The experience brought together elected officials, nonprofit partners, academic institutions, local communities, and private business owners, endeavoring to have all voices reflected in the comprehensive discussion and review.

The first phase of the planning process saw weekly meetings of breakout groups, working on project-specific areas like the future of recreation and educational planning, transportation, and the economic development of rural gateway communities. An executive steering committee presented the initial findings to the Utah outdoor community at the annual Utah Outdoor Recreation Summit, hosted in the city of Kanab. With your donations to this project, the second phase of the planning process will see those findings turned into practical recommendations and actions. Each step will work towards a seamless visitor experience conserving the cherished landscape, honoring the heritage of the natural world, and enhancing local communities by providing living wage jobs in an underserved rural economy. Balancing the needs of nature and commerce, planning of this scale is both a process and a product. The end result will be a master plan informing the future of recreation and travel in the Southwest thinking beyond Zion and acknowledging the connectedness of the topography. This unified approach is necessary to build a sustainable foundation for one of the nation’s most popular parks. Regional leaders discuss transportation needs for the future East Zion Visitor Center.



“We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to make a commitment that lasts forever. Everyone deserves a Zion experience. Knowing our investments provide public access to these captivating places is the clear motivation.”


–Steve Neeleman Founder HealthEquity Owner Zion Ponderosa Ranch

Funding Needed: TBD The Zion Forever Project understands that caring for our parks will always be a group effort as we continue to build a coalition of voices elevating the call of responsible stewardship in the parks and highlighting the increasing needs Zion faces in its second century as a National Park. Working with our partners, we have helped conserve thousands of acres of land near to and surrounding the borders of Zion. These lands are now conserved in perpetuity, for their natural resource and recreational values. The holdings are integral to the park experience and recognizes the adjacent public lands values which draw tens of millions of visitors each year to the state of Utah Bison thrive on land donated by Zion Mountain Ranch east of Zion NP.

and the southwest region. Maintaining a margin of excellence affirms the shared mission of ensuring our National Parks and all public lands remain spaces for emotional connection, healing, and inspiration for the next century of park visitors. With gap funding provided by the Zion Forever Project, partners like The Trust for Public Land, The Nature Conservancy, and the Virgin River Land Preservation Association


East Zion remains the last unprotected gateway to a national park in the lower 48 states. With more than 5 million visitors this past season, the urgency to find sustainable solutions and perpetuate a high quality visitor experience has never been greater. “The East Zion Initiative is founded on a shared conservation vision. A balanced approach that protects the eastern gateway to Zion National Park in perpetuity, while providing new experiences and recreational opportunities that expand the Zion experience beyond the park’s traditional gateways.” –Jeff Bradybaugh, Superintendent, Zion National Park The sense of place created by our collective actions on the park’s eastern plateaus benefits millions of Zion visitors and the rural communities and residents who call the Zion region home. This creative collaboration is the right people, coming together at the right time, with one chance to get it right. The most recent success was a prominent 37.7-acre parcel adjacent to the park eastern entrance. Zion Forever grassroots supporters alongside significant partners including the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, the National Park Foundation, the Donnell family, The Conservation Fund, and the State of Utah’s

The eastern entrance of Zion remains one of the last undeveloped and unprotected gateways to a national Park. With your help, we can conserve it forever. McAllister Critical Lands Conservation fund contributed a combined $1.28 million to secure a conservation and trail easement on this critical parcel. In addition, Steve Neeleman and his family, owners of the Zion Ponderosa Ranch, working with The Trust for Public Land, generously donated more than 1900 acres of land surrounding the Orderville Gulch area, providing public access through Orderville Canyon into the famous Narrows hike. With some of the essential easements now complete, this continuing campaign seeks to work with landowners to focus on similar critical tracts. These acquisitions are at the heart of future planning on the east side and without their conservation the integrity of the East Zion Initiative would be in jeopardy. Your contributions are the catalyst to providing recreational access, complimentary visitor experiences and protecting sensitive habitats. The parcels are home to threatened species like the Mexican spotted owl and migration corridors for Zion’s iconic herd of bighorn sheep. Beyond wildlife, these lands also hold precious springs, streams, and creeks that affect downstream watersheds into Zion Canyon. The eastern entrance to one of America’s most popular and revered national parks is fully deserving of our efforts, and with your generosity, we have an opportunity to enhance the Zion experience in collaboration with neighbors and partners . . . and you.


have worked diligently to conserve parcels near Zion’s borders. Your gifts leveraged and unlocked dollars across state, federal, and private sectors targeting holdings critical to future conservation efforts across the Zion region, and that includes Zion’s east side.




Public lands in the Southwest are diverse, sensitive, and sacred. Our mission is to provide strategic investments helping to protect and conserve the natural and cultural resources of this region, and to enhance the visitor experience for all. Together we are making a difference, now and forever.

PARTNER SPOTLIGHT Caring for Our Parks Will Always Be a Group Effort Our work in the parks is not done alone. Only through dedicated partnership and constant collaboration can we tackle the significant challenges facing Zion and all public lands. Our partners include the National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, State Parks, and Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources. Other partners come from the academic world, like Utah Tech (formerly DSU) and Southern Utah University, which provide thousands of hours of student internships and collaborate on many of the park’s next-gen tech driven initiatives. Partners, such as the Peregrine Fund and the Nature Conservancy, join with us on specific initiatives focused on land or wildlife protection, while others, like Utah’s Office of Outdoor Recreation, focus on helping ensure access to these rugged landscapes. Some partners, like Zion Cycles, don’t just run their businesses in the canyon - they live there too.

“These places are important to us. They are more than just where we work. They are where we live. Places like Zion are special. They influence the choices we make for our business and our family. It’s more than a passion; it’s an obligation.” –Scott & Heidi, owners, Zion Cycles. When Zion Forever began to plan for the new mountain biking trails being developed on the eastern borders outside of Zion National Park, one organization reached out eager to help. Rather than make a one-time donation, they stepped up to make a long-term commitment. The development of the “Fund the Flow” campaign means that a portion of each bicycle or e-bike rental goes directly to funding the new trails on the east side of Zion. Their funding is putting workers on the trail and unlocking matching funds for large grants to construct more than 40 miles of new trail over multiple phases. With the first 10 miles of trail already open, their continued investment is funding the seasons ahead inspiring the next partner to join us in our worthy mission of protecting and conserving the places many of us call home. Beyond supporting park projects, Zion Cycles provides equipment rental, service, and repair.

Above: Recent opening of 10 new miles of mountain bike trail on Zion’s east side. Left: Zion Cycles and other partners help represent stewardship messaging in the gateway community.



Cedar Breaks Visitor Center Kolob Canyons Visitor Center

Zion Human History Museum Zion NP Visitor Center

“There is something magical about Zion. It’s more than a collection of great hikes and stunning views. That’s why our whole team is so passionate about conserving this sacred space and we want to share that with visitors so they can have a positive impact as well.” –Kim Holt, Zion Canyon Senior Retail Manager

Pipe Spring Visitor Center


ZION FOREVER PARK STORES Supporting our National Parks and Monuments by shopping our park stores in person or online is just one of the ways you can help fund important work in Zion National Park, Cedar Breaks and Pipe Spring National Monuments. Proceeds from your purchases are investments into the park’s highest priority initiatives. Because of your continued support, we are able to invest in the important programs which impact every aspect of the park experience. Your purchases help inform visitors, repair trails, restore habitat, protect wildlife, provide classrooms in nature, and much more. As a first-time visitor or lifelong park enthusiast, our books, maps, and guides help you make the most of your time and learn more about these special places. Each store location is unique offering curated interpretive items providing treasured memories that last a lifetime. Pick out the perfect item from our collection of park and nature-themed books, maps, gear, hats, apparel, collectibles, and more.

Our team of frontline ambassadors are always ready to assist by answering questions about our work and helping orient you to the landscape. Whether you purchase the perfect memory, round-up your change at the register, or make an in-park donation, your contribution directly benefits our national parks and monuments.

STORE LOCATIONS Zion National Park Visitor Center (Open Year Round) Zion Human History Museum (Reopening soon) Kolob Canyons Visitor Center (Reopening soon) Cedar Breaks National Monument (Opening for 2022 Season May 27) Pipe Spring National Monument (Open Year Round) Online Store – zionpark.org


Your Purchases Make a Difference

OUR MISSION, THROUGH A GENERATIONAL LENS I recently watched a reel of a long-forgotten eight-millimeter film from my boyhood. Together with my children, grandchildren, and my 90-year-old father, who shot the film more than six decades ago, I saw scenes of my boyhood flicker on the wall of my living room. Some of it was shot in Zion National Park, and my heart swelled as I saw the same scenes, though fuzzy and faded, that I see each day from my office window. It was heartening to witness how little the park has changed in the four generations since my father made those home movies. My mother was the star of one segment. She was newly married, and one scene shows her on a bridge crossing the Virgin River, smiling brightly as she approaches the camera. As the reel ended and the room fell dark, my father informed me I’d just witnessed my first trip to Zion National Park. “No,” I corrected him, “I wasn’t born yet.” He smiled and said, “But you were there.” As I put the reel back in its box, I read the date hand-written on the label. The film had been shot almost exactly six months before I was born. The notion of generational stewardship came home to me in a profound way that evening. Zion meant something very special to my parents. And after watching that film, it meant something even deeper to me, my children, and my grandchildren. It’s true Zion has changed little since those tiny, delicate frames of film were exposed more than a half-century ago, but one thing has changed immensely: in 1955, the year I was born, 406,800 visitors entered the canyon. Last year that number was 5,039,835. Together we have a lot of work to do to provide for the continuing enjoyment of this place, “in such manner and by such means, as will leave [it] unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

Lyman Hafen President / CEO

Zion Forever Project Executive Team, Board of Directors, park partners and donors gather during a quarterly board meeting.





Join the Zion Forever Project Founders Circle

Supporters with an annual gift of $50 or

with Scott Anderson, President and CEO

more will receive special gifts, including 15%

of Zions Bank, and Kem Gardner, Chairman

discount at our park stores and discounts at

of Gardner Company. Gifts of $100,000 or

cooperating association park stores located

more bring access to numerous benefits.

throughout the country.



Champion a specific project in the Field

The impact Zion has on us can resonate

Guide by directing your gift to a project that

throughout a lifetime. You can highlight the

matters to you.

legacy of a loved one with a gift to the Zion Forever Project. Gifts received in memory will

AFFILIATE PROGRAMS Your business can be recognized as an active force in preserving the Zion experience for future generations. Frontline training, collat-

go directly to fund the park’s highest priority projects.


eral and more can be made available to your

Visit smile.amazon.com and choose Zion Natl


Park Forever Project as your charity of choice. You will find all of the same deals you would

WORKING PARTNERS Join our group of dedicated business partners in helping to address Zion’s biggest issues.

on Amazon, but through Amazon Smile, a portion of your purchase will be donated back to the Zion Forever Project.




Ask your employer if they will match your

Mark Preiss Vice President of Philanthropy 435.668.6330 mark.preiss@zionpark.org

Project. Many employers sponsor matching gift programs and can provide you with a form to submit online or by mail. It’s an easy way to help your gift go twice as far.

GIFTS OF SECURITIES Gifts of stock and other appreciated securities are an easy way to help Zion, while also receiving a number of tax benefits.

ADD UP FOR ZION Keep an eye out for the Zion Forever logo at local businesses. Many of our local participating business partners give you the option to Add Up for Zion, so your loose change can help change Zion’s future.

Stephani Lyon Director of Philanthropy 702.556.1596 stephani.lyon@zionpark.org Tiffany Stouffer Annual Giving & Grants Coordinator 435.200.9903 tiffany.stouffer@zionpark.org Zack Almaguer Communications Manager 435.200.9903 zachary.almaguer@zionpark.org Savannah Dunn Director of Retail Sales 435.772.5934 savannah.dunn@zionpark.org

SOCIAL MEDIA In addition to raising funds, you can make a difference by simply liking the Zion Forever Instagram page and following us on Facebook. We offer engaging information through our social media channels which you can share with others and bring attention to our mission of stewardship.

Zion Forever Project 1 Zion National Park Springdale, UT 84767

#zionforever | @zionforeverproject



charitable contribution to the Zion Forever

PHOTO CREDITS Wade Wixom: Cover, 2-3, 4, 5, 6 - 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 20, 22, 25, 26, 29, 42, 47, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 57, 59, 60, 61 NPS Archives: 3, 8, 13, 17, 22, 24, 26, 29, 30, 32, 33, 36, 40, 43, 44, 45, 50 Cadence Cook: 29, 34, 35, 36 Mike Saemisch: 40, 46 Unknown: 31, 40 Tiffany Stouffer: 56, 57 DW Legacy Design: 14, 15 Joe Braun: 17, 19 Southern Utah University: 38 Gary Peeples: 39 American Conservation Experience: 13 US Fish & Wildlife Services: 45 Michelle Temiquel: 28 Patrick Gill: 59 Jerrica McLaws: 10 CB Architect: 13 Kevin Christopherson: 21 Rachel Wootten: 48 Shane Valentine: 49

Graphic Design by Wade Wixom

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