National Scenic Byway Highway SR-143 -
Nature’s Patchwork Parkway-Parowan to Panguitch
Byway description: From Parowan, the highway climbs past the colorful Vermillion Cliffs through a maple and scrub oak forest. The road twists through cone shaped white cliffs then makes a major ascent to the forested heights of Brian Head ski town. Past Brian Head, the road climbs again to summit at 10,400 feet and continues south past the North View of Cedar Breaks National Monument, where it junctions with Hwy SR-148.
Heading east, the road descends through a thick aspen forest which is brilliant in the late September with golden and red aspens. You’ll see distant views into the pink cliffs of the Paunsagunt Plateau. Ancient lava fields pop up through the aspen trees that line the highway. The road meets up with Panguitch Lake which is popular for fishing and boating. SR 143 continues east, following lush pastures and the banks of the Panguitch Lake Creek into historic Panguitch.
How do I get there? From Parowan I- 15 exit #78, go south on Parowan’s Main Street, turn left at Center St/SR-143and head east.
Is road open in the winter? Yes, but check road conditions in the winter.
Side Trips & Viewpoints:
- Parowan Cemetery
- Vermillion Cliffs Picnic Area
- Yankee Meadow
- Hidden Haven Waterfall
- Dry Lakes Scenic Backway
- Brian Head Resort
- Brian Head Peak Road
- Cedar Breaks
- Panguitch Lake
- Historic Panguitch
What is the one way, no stops drive time? The drive is 55 miles and takes about 90 minutes to travel.
Grade & Elevation: 13% Grade. Elevation is from 5,600 feet to 10,400 feet. The portion between Parowan and Brian Head is steep and not recommended for RV’s or semi trucks.
Services: Lodging, gas, food, campgrounds, visitor centers in Parowan, Brian Head and Panguitch.
(This site is funded in part by a grant from the Federal Highway Administration.)