||A nice walk through a
scenic, well watered canyon. Warning: one steep downclimb is required to enter the
canyon via the route specified below.
||From the small town of
Escalante. Drive east on Utah State Highway 12. Turn right on Hole-in-the-Rock
Road and follow about 36 miles, turn left on to Forty Mile Ridge Rd and follow to the
Jacob Hamlin Arch Trailhead & parking area.
||High Clearance Vehicle? -
It really depends on when you arrive. After a recent grading the roads might be
passable using a passenger car, though there are some sand traps that might prove
||Moderate - some short
cross country stretches to get in and out of the Gulch
||Sorry, not really sure -
plan on a full day of hiking though, or perhaps a two day backpack
||Cool/cold in the canyon,
(in fact the water was semi frozen in places making for some painful wading) warm in the
sun. That's the desert for you.
||From the Jacob Hamlin
Arch Trailhead begin at the metal tank and head directly north up/down and around the
sandstone hills towards the big canyon in the distance. Once near the edge (but not
too near) look for the big arch which comes out of the north wall of the canyon.
There is a steep slick rock slope just east of the arch that will allow you to
enter the canyon (Note: This section is really steep, the author and his wife made it down
with careful negotiation, but one slip and you'd be in trouble - take care descending or
bring some rope). Once in the canyon, head east (right). You'll be walking in
the stream (up to knee deep when the author was there), or on one of many use trails that
run along side. On the way downstream you will pass Coyote Natural Bridge &
Cliff Arch before eventually reaching the Escalante River several hours later. Once
at the Escalante turn around and head back upstream a few hundred yards. Your exit
point is the sandy slide on stream right (the right side of the stream if you are facing
the direction the water is flowing). There is an easily visible trail that leads up
this tedious sand slog (check out the view behind you as you ascend of Stevens Arch to the
north) which leads to a sandstone ridge. Climb up the ridge to the bench, at which
point you'll have to route find your way south-west to the Fortymile Ridge Trailhead (this
will make sense with a glance at the map recommended below). Once at the trailhead
follow Fortymile Ridge Rd back to your car.
Though this is a popular area by Escalante standards, it is quite a nice
hike. The author and his wife completed this hike on Thanksgiving day in about 8
hours and saw several groups of people particularly around the sandy slide near the end of
||Trails Illustrated -
Canyons of the Escalante
Hiking Guide to the Colorado Plateau -
||Click picture for larger
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