Explore the most popular walking trails in Vermilion Cliffs National Monument with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

We would highly recommend doing this hike if you're in the area. It's fairly easy and is mostly down a dry riverbed. Towards the end, you go through a couple of slot canyons and you have to scramble at this one drop off point. We heard someone say there was a way around but couldn't figure it out. Once you get through the two slot canyons, it opens up into a confluence with Buckskin Gulch and the area is simply amazing. There's petroglyphs on the rock wall too. This is the best part of the hike so don't quit before you reach the end.

hiking
4 days ago

A wonderful hike and beautiful geologic feature. While The Wave was the main event for the hike and certainly worth the effort, the out and back hike and wandering around the area is fascinating. The views are endless.

Wouldn't recommend this trail. Poorly marked and signs say to stay off trail and follow the dry stream bed. Views are relatively the same on both sides. Drive there is a bit long on the gravel road for a poorly marked trail (Maybe because we were spoiled in other areas)

A LOT HARDER than I read or any YouTube video showed. I went in 2015 with 2 other guys I was in the Marines with. The gulch was a hell of a lot of fun, incredibly beautiful but we did it in high heat of July and we went through over a gallon and half of water each. This section took us literally all day. Our plans were to turn right and hike all the way down to Lee’s ferry but on night 1 we were strongly considering hooking left for the shirt route out.

We took an easy day to go 5 miles and refill water so actually finished at Lee’s FERRY BUT NONE WAS AS HARD AS buckskin. It wasn’t horrific, definitely doable but ensure you have the right mindset for it. We did not understand what we headed in to and this were not quite mentally prepared.

As for the hike- stunning. Incredibly satisfying. The entire gulch is carved from heaven. It’s simply one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen in 26 countries.

DO NOT DO IT IN JULY. lol. I recommend doing it in cooler weather.

Great, easy and flat hike to see some beautiful slot canyons! The hike starts out going through a river bed/wash area for about a mile then leads through several slot canyons. The hike ends with one last slot canyon opening into a grand open space area with huge rock walls- almost like a natural amphitheater and intersects the Buckskin Gulch trail. **NOTE: you have to drive about 17 miles down a bumpy, rough dirt road to reach this trailhead!! Be aware it may not be passable with a small/low to the ground vehicle (I made it with my Ford Focus but had to drive very slow). You also may need to purchase a permit at the self-pay station at the trailhead which is generally around $6.00 per person (must pay with cash).

hiking
14 days ago

Nice hike. Starting in River bed with beautiful wild flowers, then goes into a slot canyon. little traffic, enjoyed the quiet.

Just amazing !!! Few people, canyonning boots were necessary in April ( water up to the knee and above). Great memories there. Don’t miss it

The Wave is a once-in-a-lifetime experience! Our permits were for late March. The weather was perfect, it drizzled at times which kept the temperature perfect. We didn't use a compass or GPS... probably would've found it faster if we had. It was a rough hike for the non-hiker in the group.

backpacking
1 month ago

Such an amazing place to push your limits! I did the whole Paria canyon and buckskin gulch in a five day trip in mid March, and it was incredible. Can’t wait to go back. I’m 5’ 10”, and the water level in some places were up to my chest. Weather was kinda cold but not freezing.

1 month ago

Amazing! Easy hike but be very very careful with navigation, you can get lost easily.

Amazing hike!! Did this in April, Started from wire pass and went right at the fork. Saw petroglyphs in many of the rocks. Didn’t see any other hikers until about 6 miles from the camp. There is tons of water anywhere from ankle to shoulder deep. The water is ice cold! Only one pool was difficult due to sticks and logs gathered at the end of it. We got to the huge boulders and didn’t have rope, we found a small hole and got through super easily. Highly recommend this hike!!!

This was a hike that was beautiful and a good workout that ended at one of the most beautiful natural shrines I have seen. A highlight on a trip full of great hikes!

hiking
1 month ago

Great Experience for a small group!!

on Wire Pass Trail

1 month ago

so we went today 3/29/18. Quite a bit of people with kids and a couple of dogs. there was alot of water pools. We ended up going 3pools in and went back and up the other smaller half which was absolutely beautiful and hardly any water.

hiking
1 month ago

Really fun hike that we did as a family - mom, dad, twin 8 year olds and a five year old. Handled the drop with a little assist from 6’4” dad and then further into the slot canyon. The kids loved it. We ate a snack at the T junction then went up the Gulch to the left. A bit of loose sand and called it quits and turned back around after about 10 minutes. Others went to the right and found pools of icy cold water but navigated them okay. We opted to go over the hill on the way back instead of scrambling back up the 8 foot drop. Great views and kids had fun scrambling up the slick rock. All did great, with about 4.5 mikes total and 3 hours - although short legs and side track climbing make us a bit slow :).

Great introduction to slot canyons. Not for everyone due to one tricky 8 ft drop you go down then up. But we did it! Aged 9-45 and I’m a big guy. If u can do it the payoff is well worth it!

hiking
1 month ago

Loved this hike. Starts out rather bland, but there are the cool rock formations all over with the layered colors, stripes, etc, during the entire hike prior to the slot. Wire pass does include a slot canyon that has very high walls in a tight space. Go into the slot regardless if you can make the 8 foot drop. You can enjoy the awesomeness of the Antelope Canyon-like slot, and go back and go around the slot. As you are going toward the slot the walk around is on the right. My wife and I went around going down, as I believe going down the 8 foot drop is harder thatn going up. On the way back we went up the 8 foot climb up a branch that is wedged in place. Took some effort, but not bad. The ending is rewarded with the incredibly huge canyon walls at the convergance to Buckskin Gulch. No water anywhere in Wire Pass or at the convergence when we went in late March. You can go upstream at Buckskin without water or very little. But downstream, the deeper "puddles" waist high start at about 50 yards in. Worth going a bit upstream on Buckskin if you have time. You feel very small at the convergance area. Awesome stuff.

backpacking
1 month ago

Best day hike I have done. I hiked BG in March. The first hour was dry. The second hour was in and out of a couple dozen pools that ranged from knee to waste deep (I am 5’6”). My neoprene socks and pants helped me stay warm because it was 30 degrees but my feet stayed numb throughout because I only went with 2mm. My bf had 5mm and was much more comfortable. After an hour in the pools, the canyon opens up and I warmed up a bit but quickly hit the deeper pools known as the cesspools which are chest and neck deep. One has a rock slide into the pool which if you slide down it will submerge you. If you stay to the left there are small steps down and the left side is slightly higher (stay to the right on the return). Started at 8:30AM and got back to the trailhead at 4:20PM. I didn’t use poles so my knees and ankles were sore the next day. We only saw one other couple during the hike and were mostly alone with the exception of some people at the beginning of the trail.

Definitely a beautiful hike if you can get a permit through the lottery! Went at the end of February 2 years ago and even with the cooler temps, it was still hot. There is no shade so take more water than you think you need!

Nice slot that conveniently merges with buckskin gulch. Use the alternative way around the 8ft drop which was nice. The drop wasn’t bad but had a lot of camera gear and didn’t want to chance it

hiking
2 months ago

Exceptional hike, very easy until the 7’ foot drop. But it looks much harder than it is! An easy climb up and down and we had a dog with us. Buckskin gulch was amazing. We only hit one patch of water but easily passed using the rocks. Very little traffic.

hiking
2 months ago

There's a boulder and about a 7 foot drop halfway down the first slot. I didn't think I could do it alone with just my dog but it's easy to hike back to the opening and go up to the right and bypass it. This hike was my consolation prize for never winning the wave lottery month after month.

Absolutely gorgeous. Be prepared to run into water during the winter months. We came across knee deep water in Feb.

A girl from Montana was intrigued by the slot canyon & beautiful colors. Great easy hike & warm, sunny weather. A bit hard to find railhead but we persevered & found it!

trail running
3 months ago

This was easy access into this area. Great dirt road. Ran the dirt road in and out..I think it was more miles than what was on review. But really amazing rock and slot canyon.

lifetime memory

Beautiful!

Wanted to ditch the crowds today and it worked on this trail! We didn't go too far but we had our 5 yo and it was perfect for us. Lots of beautiful scenery and plenty of exploring to do and scrambling around on the slick rock. We were here in good weather in January - I imagine it gets real hot in summer but once you get down towards more of the narrow sections it's probably a lot cooler. Just lots of exploring to do here - I look forward to coming back and making it further down the gulch.

hiking
4 months ago

We enjoyed this hike.. for the most part it was easy except one 8 foot drop inside the canyon. Keep in mind that inside Wire Pass (after the turn off for Buckskin Overlook), there is an 8 foot drop that is a challenge. This can be by passed by going up on top of the canyon. Both ways can be a bit tricky if you're not used to it. Dec. 29, 2017

wonderful

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