Discover the Desert: Digging into the past on top of Shinob Kibe

CONTRIBUTED CONTENT —Rising above the Virgin River in Washington City, the sloping colorful mesa known as Shinob Kibe (pronounced Shih-no’-bee Ky’-bee) is a family-friendly hike with incredible views and a rich history.

In this episode of “Discover the Desert,” Caitlin Skillings leads a group of kids and their parents up the Washington County geologic landmark, sharing history, hiking tips and good energy along the way.

“I’m so excited to be kicking this year off with one of our favorite hikes,” Skillings said.

Learn more about Shinob Kibe’s spirit and history in this episode of “Discover the Desert” in the media player above

Named for a Paiute deity, Shinob Kibe means “great spirit” (Shinob), “mountain” (Kibe).

According to information from the Washington County Historical Society’s webpage, Shinob Kibe acted as a refuge for the Paiute Native Americans who would flee to the mesa to escape raids and avoid capture by the Navajo.

An ariel view of Shinob Kibe and the surrounding area, Washington County, Utah, date not specified | Photo courtesy of the Washington County Historical Society website, St. George News

There is also an ancient medicine wheel near the summit.

Shinob Kibe is also the site of more recent history. In the 1930s, the Civil Aviation Authority built a concrete aviation arrow on the southern end of the mesa.

Before the advent of GPS, the arrows would help pilots on mail routes navigate their way from Los Angeles to Salt Lake City, Skillings said.

“This is one of three arrows in the St. George area and it would point the pilots so they would know which direction to head to get to Salt Lake City,” Skillings said to the hiking group.

Discovery tips:

  • Shinob Kibe is a family-friendly hike, but there are a few steep switchbacks. Make sure to prepare by wearing supportive shoes, weather appropriate clothing and carrying plenty of water.
  • The top of the mesa has unprotected, steep drops so make sure to watch small children and use caution near edges.

Find a map to Shinob Kibe here.

Discover the Desert is presented by the CasaBlanca Resort.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

Free News Delivery by Email

Would you like to have the day's news stories delivered right to your inbox every evening? Enter your email below to start!