Zion National Park Rangers Dealing With ‘Unnecessary Vandalism,’ Post Video Cleaning Graffiti

by TK Sanders

Zion National Park officials recently shared a video detailing the labor-intensive process of removing graffiti from the park. In the video, park officials must carefully scrub the surfaces of various landmarks and majestic settings without causing further damage to the fragile sites.

“Rangers and volunteers in Zion have been spending hours cleaning unnecessary vandalism in the park such as rock carvings and scratches, stickers, permanent markers, and in this case, spray paint,” they wrote in the video’s YouTube description.

“Vandalism like this not only greatly impacts the visitor experience in the park, but it is also extremely difficult to remove,” officials also added. “This piece covered 150 square feet and took a total of 35 hours of work. 7 Rangers and Volunteers that had to be taken from their regularly scheduled duties in order to help with the repair.”

Rock surfaces of East Zion national park required light sandpaper scrubbing in order to remove the graffiti by buffing away the top layer of stone. An abrasive chemical-like paint remover would have permanently damaged the stone. Officials also said this rock was covered in lichens, which they had to avoid in order to salvage.

If you know anything about the recent graffiti in Zion National Park, be sure to reach out to park services

National park officials across the country encourage visitors to “leave no trace” when visiting the protected American landmarks. Anyone who sees vandalism or knows of details regarding vandalism in any park should talk to a ranger or call 888-653-0009 to report a tip.

“You don’t have to tell us who you are, but please tell us what you know,” officials said. “All vandalism actions are illegal on public lands and subject to a class B misdemeanor. The charge is punishable by 6 months in prison, a $5000 fine, or a combination of both.”

Mount Zion is one of the country’s most visited parks, with millions of tourists coming through the Utah marvel annually. Officials also outlined a handful of tips to keep the space in the same or better condition year after year.

“After lots of hard work and time, we restored this site as best it could be. But permanent damage still remains,” park officials said. “We are asking you to do your part in protecting your national parks for future generations and leave no trace when you are visiting. Take only pictures, leave only footprints.”

Some of the rangers’ tips include:

  • Travel and camp on durable surfaces: Protect the natural vegetation by sticking to designated trails and sites
  • Dispose of waste properly: Be sure to carry out all trash, food or otherwise, before leaving the park
  • Leave what you find: Do not take home souvenirs from the wildlife, and do not alter the landscape if possible
  • Respect wildlife: Always view the multitude of wildlife from a safe distance in order to protect both them and you