Buckskin Gulch Slot Canyon

The Canyon

Hello, My name is Shane, and I am an addict… My addiction is nature and the outdoors. Yep, you heard me right. I feel most alive when I am far away from any other living person, and I always feel the need to be on the go. My wife says I am probably a direct descendant from the nomads or the gypsy people. The funny thing is that when she says this, I feel like she is complementing me. Well, I guess that is a sign that I probably was a nomad, gypsy, or an explorer in another life. Well, if you are here to read about the outdoors, I guess you may have some nomad in you too and we may just be distant relatives.

Now, let’s get down to business, I assume you are reading this blog post because you want to do something fun in the outdoors. Or maybe you are reading it because it is on an RV website and you think you are going to learn something about an RV Camper. Well I am sorry but not today. I love being in the RV industry because an RV is a tool you can use to get you closer to the outdoors and do some awesome stuff but still have the comforts of home. Now, I am going to explain one of the most incredible hikes you may ever go on. It is called Buckskin Gulch and it is supposedly one of the longest slot canyons in the world. This is a hike that you must put on your bucket list. I have hiked all over Utah and this is by far one of my favorites. The slots canyon at times goes uninterrupted miles and miles. (10 to 15 miles)

A hidden path

The sun's just around the corner

Hike info.

The entire hike is about 21 miles and is best done in two days. Today I am going to write about a shorter version that you can do with the entire family (including children). The last time I was there was in November 2015 and we were lucky to have great weather. We drove down Saturday to Kanab and got a hotel. We slept in on Sunday and didn’t actually get to the hike until noon and since we had to drive back that night for work on Monday we didn’t have a lot of time to hike so we only went in 3 miles and back out which took us about 4 years (stopping a lot for pictures). If you decide to only go in 3 miles and back out you will leave completely satisfied and in awe. Personally, I would recommend going as early as possible and going in as far as you can and back. There is some scrambling, water and mud at spots so that will for sure slow you down. If you were to get to the trail head by 7am to 8am you could hike in pretty far and make a good day of it. In the summer pack a lot of water. Remember you are in the desert so make sure you pack extra, especially in a slot canyon as you tend to move a lot slower because you are scrambling at times. Beware! I have heard you are likely to see rattlesnakes on this hike. Obviously it all depends on what time of year you go. I have heard that they are usually not aggressive because of the cool dampness of the canyon, but you should still keep an eye out for them.

Me, forging ahead

The canyon gets pretty narrow in some spots

Getting to the trailhead.

From Salt Lake City you head south to Kanab, Utah which is about 5 hours away. Once you get into Kanab you will head East on Hwy 89 toward Page, AZ. Reset your trip monitor at the Wendy’s Fast food Restaurant. From Wendy’s you will go east for 36 miles, your turn off will be on your right. (Right pass the turn off there is a sign that says “ICY ROAD” and it is right before a cut out in the mountain that the road goes though. Don’t go through the cut out in the mountain or else you will have gone too far) There is not a sign for the road. It is paved for 50 yards and then turns into a dirt road. The dirt road goes between two small mountain ranges and runs by a dried up riverbed. This place definitely has flash floods and would be unpassable in the rain. We were in luck with sunny blue skies. I drove a 2002 Lexus Sedan and made it just fine to the trailhead. Having an SUV would be nice but it was very doable in a car. You will head on this road for about 8 miles until you come to a parking lot on your right. This is called Wire Pass Trailhead there is bathrooms and a good sized parking lot. The tail is on the opposite side of the road from the parking lot. Head on down to the river bottom and get ready to be amazed. It will be about a mile before you get to the first slots. Continue and you will not be disappointed.

Getting dark

Only a sliver of sky

I really hope you get the chance to head to Southern Utah at least a few times in your life and more so do this hike. If you like the outdoors this may become one of your favorite hikes. I will have to say that if you don’t like this hike there may be something wrong with you. I hope you enjoy it and as soon as you are done with it please come back and make some comments in the comment section below. I would love input to see if there is anything that I can improve. Until next time RV onward!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *