Pic of the Day: The Subway

Have you heard of the Subway at Zion National Park? Named for its tube-like, undercut slot canyons, it's a segment that's less than a quarter-mile in length but one that's been highly photographed.

Recently, I came across this striking picture of it by Simon Christen. Soon after, we got in touch with the photographer to ask the story behind this gorgeous shot.

“I first saw a very similar image while visiting Zion National Park in the visitor center a couple years ago on my last day in the park. I asked the park ranger where that was and mentioned that it was in the back country somewhere.

“At home, I did some research and found a great description of the hike leading to the Subway. It takes about 6 hours round trip (not counting taking pictures) and most of the way is hiking along or through the creek. The hardest part is a very steep climb at the end of the day, back to the parking lot. But it's definitely all worth it. Just the hike alone is leading you through some breathtaking landscape.”

When we asked him what it felt like standing there, he told us this. “It felt great. I felt that adrenalin rush that I believe most photographers feel when the found a special location. The Subway has been photographed a lot and I looked at a lot of pictures while doing research but standing in it blows it all out of the water. The creek echoes softly from the walls. The sun's glow reflects from a giant cliff (just around the corner) into the tunnel. It's really an amazing sight.

Finally, are there any tips he would give to others who'd like to make the trek there? “I would recommend bringing special water boots with good soles,” he says, “the rocks are extremely slippery.”

Make sure to visit Simon Christen's website to see more of his beautiful photography including his travel photos through Nepal and India as well as his landscape and cityscape shots.

Become a
My Modern Met Member
As a member, you'll join us in our effort to support the arts.
Become a Member
Explore member benefits

Sponsored Content