Pipe Spring

Pipe Spring National Monument

Pipe Spring stgeorgeonline.com

About 60 miles from St. George Utah on highway 59 is the Kaibab Paiute Reservation.  This is the home of Pipe Spring National Monument.  A nice stopping place while on your way to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon or if you are making the loop through Kanab and on to Zion National Park.

Pipe Spring National Monument is rich with American Indian, early explorer and Mormon pioneer history. The Pipe Spring water has made it possible for plants, animals, and people to live in this dry, desert region.

Ancestral Pueblo and Kaibab Paiute Indians gathered grass seeds, hunted animals, and raised crops near the springs for at least 1,000 years.

In the 1860s Mormon pioneers brought cattle to the area and by 1872 a fort (Winsor Castle) was built over the main spring and a large cattle ranching operation was established.

This isolated outpost served as a way station for people traveling from Zion National Park to the Grand Canyon. The springs provided water and a place of refuse and rest while crossing the Arizona Strip, that part of Arizona separated from the rest of the state by the Grand Canyon. It also served as a refuge for polygamist wives during the 1880s and 1890s.

Although their way of life was greatly impacted, the Paiute Indians continued to live in the area and by 1907 the Kaibab Paiute Indian Reservation was established, surrounding the privately owned Pipe Spring ranch.

In 1923 the Pipe Spring ranch was purchased by the US government and set aside as a national monument.

They offer ranger guided tours or you can explore the area on your own. You have to go on the tour to see the inside of the fort. Nice place for a break with clean restrooms and a gas station across the street.