It was in this section while immersed in the beauty we were shocked back into the reality of the danger that lurks here. Beyond the 8’ cliff the slot canyon flattens out and the flat trail becomes a great indicator of the journey ahead. Wire Pass To Buckskin Gulch, near Kanab, Utah Three miles or as much as you can take, moderate hike. There is one 100-foot drop that drops you over a blind wall where you cannot see the bottom of the canyon from the top. Beyond the escape route, the trail narrows to the tightest section within Buckskin Gulch. The rock walls tower anywhere from 100-300 ft tall, and at it's narrowest, is only 2 feet wide. Your email address will not be published. Once the trail rounds the hill there is another smaller hill of sand on the right side as well. The canyon hike was a 1.5 to 2-miles long and joined with Buckskin Gulch and some more slot canyons. The nightlife in Buckskin Gulch overwhelms the stillness of this desert place. Cindy Wallis 2002 Ford F250 2018 Lance 650, Wire Pass To Buckskin Gulch, near Kanab, Utah 1.5 to 2 miles until Buckskin Gulch. This was a blessing but even in this extremely dry time the deepest part of the gulch still had waist-deep water with a soft muddy bottom. It is very long and the last repel, drops you about 100-feet down a waterfall into the Narrows of Zion National Park. You have to continue to the end. There is no camping in Buckskin Gulch until the confluence. The next few pictures are of Ordeville Gulch in Zion. Camping is the same as for Mystery Canyon. It is important to get here relatively early in the day to acquire one of the few first-come, first-served campsites. When we were volunteering at Bryce Canyon we took a trip down the Hole-in-the-Rock Road in Escalante where there are several slot canyons. The trail out of the creek bed and up to the campground/parking lot can be a bit tricky to locate. Red Cliffs Park is near Harrisburg, Utah about 15-miles north of St. George, Utah along I-15. It’s common sense, but another repeated piece of advice is to know your limitations and turn back when you hit something you’re not comfortable with. It is still about a 40-minute drive to Hayters Gap, or a 12-mile hike one way from the other end of the Brumley Mountain Trail at Hidden Valley. I have included some pictures of a few of the slot canyons I have enjoyed exploring. Each footstep into the unknown squished deep into the mud. The Buckskin Gulch Confluence is a magical place to camp. The Wire Pass slot canyon is one of the narrowest parts of the journey when backpacking Buckskin Gulch. It is also the muddiest section of the journey. The shortest and most common route to experience pretty much all of Buckskin is Wire Pass to White House, which is a ~23-mile trek. With the small spring water emerging into the canyon it is an oasis hidden deep in the earth. The towering vertical walls tighten to about two feet in width. On the way out we passed by at least a dozen day hikers, backpackers, and horse riders. The fee is … The bypass is found on the right side of the creek bed as you approach the slot canyon (left as you hike back after dropping your bag) and is fairly easy to spot. Campfires are not allowed at any of the sites. It is a short and steep three to four-mile hike to amazing views. About the time that the canyon widened out so much that it no longer resembled a canyon at all, we saw the familiar sign of the White House rock formation. Once at the top of the smaller boulder you will round a much larger boulder (that obscures this path from view) and slide down another slab of rock. There is a small BLM campground a short distance south of the Buckskin Slot Canyon trailhead. That’s when we said, “Nope! This is a BLM site and camping is very reasonably priced . Allegedly, at 23 miles long, it is the longest slot canyon in the US. Together with Paria, a number of hiking options exist here, with one route stretching for some 38 miles, from trailheads near the Utah/Arizona border down to Lee's Ferry on the Colorado River. Take the challenge and practice your off-road driving to get there. After you hike the canyons you can drive further down the road and dry camp on top of the red rocks here (37°19’40.2″N 111°03’33.9″W). However, if you are able to gauge the distance there is an emergency exit about 5 miles down the canyon from the Buckskin/Wire Pass intersection, known as the Middle Trail Escape. Before proceeding, there are six very important rules to follow before you walk into a slot canyon. Vote For Your Favorite Camper, Gear, and Innovation, Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, VOTE: Best of 2020 Readers’ Choice Awards, 2021 Buyers Guide and Gear Guide Announced. Forget bringing the pet(s) into the monument area. Just finding the road was an adventure. Easy walk in sand to Class three rock scramble. Statistically, you are in more danger driving your truck down the road than hiking in a slot canyon – especially if you’re following the above rules and being careful. The campground seemingly fills up overnight during the hiking season. These sections aren’t for the faint of heart as the water feels more like quicksand than water. The road to the canyon is a good paved road. Now, my wife and I travel as a way of life. Hidden Valley has no campground, but dispersed camping is allowed along the lake front parking area. Stay in the dry creek bed until you reach the Wire Pass slot canyon. If you continue far enough into the canyon you eventually will come across some wet areas, but not so wet as to not be easily passable. For overnight trips into Paria Canyon and Buckskin Gulch, you must apply for and purchase a permit in advance. Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, Jemez Springs, New Mexico 3 to 5+ miles. One of the country’s truly classic trails for hiking, the Buckskin Gulch meanders through a … It was the sound of a rattle going off in an alarming pitch echoing off the tight walls that alerted us to the danger. The next two pictures are in Mystery Canyon in Zion National Park. As the canyon begins to once again narrow the boulders become clustered and the trail ahead is obscured. As Buckskin Gulch begins to once again narrow it reaches the confluence. As the gulch nears the confluence camping area the floor began to have a small stream of water in it. When we returned last year in 2019, the only thing we saw were the crowds. No camping is allowed at the trailhead. On your drive south of Highway 89 on House Rock Valley Road, don’t confuse the first trailhead you come to -- the Buckskin Trailhead -- with the Wire Pass Trailhead. Home » Expeditions » Travel The USA » Slot Canyons: The Bucket List. There is little to no shade once direct overhead sunlight reaches into the canyon, so protective clothing and/or sunscreen is highly recommended. Jim Hignite 2016 Ram 3500 2009 Lance 1181, Birch Hollow Slot Canyon, Mystery Canyon, Ordeville Gulch, Little Wild Horse and more, All Around Utah Difficulty depends on the canyon. There is dispersed boondocking camping all along the Hole-In-The-Rock Road. This will help with your balance and avoid potential falls. As long as the good Lord allows. We were surprised at how easy it was to walk into this slot canyon from the parking/camping area. That said, this is a trailhead so cars will be coming and going and if it’s crowded they’ll probably think you’re a jerk for camping here. As it was just past noon and the mercury undoubtedly passing well beyond 90 degrees we were elated. Having someone with you (or a group) to help in an emergency could be critical. Other recommendations are to bring a light backpack and keep your hands free when hiking and climbing. The confluence refers to the area where Buckskin Gulch and Paria Canyon meet. It is about 15 to 20-miles east of Kanab, Utah. I had thought that this journey would be similar and in many ways that is true, but these two journeys are also very different. There are few technical areas, but they are easily navigated. We awoke early the next morning just before sunrise and moved our rig from the campground to the trail parking lot. GPS is useless as there isn’t a line of sight to the sky and therefore the satellite signal doesn’t reach into the depths of the canyon. These canyons get tight, so if you don’t like closed in places don’t go. Buckskin Gulch is popular, potentially hazardous and part of the Paria Canyon - Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, so there are several rules regarding access. 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