Coyote Gulch Loop is a 10.6 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Lake Powell, Utah that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and backpacking and is best used from March until November.

Length10.6 miElevation gain1840 ftRoute typeLoop
BackpackingHikingNature tripsRiverViewsWaterfallWildlifeRockyNo shadeFeeNo dogs
Description
Waypoints (5)
Facilities
Tips

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area charges a fee to enter. Fees are $30 per vehicle/vessel or $25 per motorcycle. If you are entering on foot or bike the fee is $15 per person. You can also purchase a park specific annual pass for $55. From the trailhead, hike miles along a sandy trail to reach the rim of the canyon. Then squeeze through Crack in the Rock and then hike to the bottom of Coyote Gulch being greeted by towering red rock cliffs found at the canyon bottom. From there you hike south to the mouth of the Escalante River, cross it and then encounter a steep climb to Stephen's Arch, the eye of Stevens Arch is 220 feet across and 160 feet tall. The views from under Stephen's is breathtaking. Once you force yourself to leave you hike back the way you came and continue up Coyote Gulch to Jacob Hamblin's Arch, climb out (rope recommended), and then head south through alternating sand and slick rock back to the trailhead.

Small parking lot at trailhead. Four wheel drive required to get to trailhead.

Permit and waste bags required on this trail. A 150 rope is recommended to exit Jacob Hamblin. It is a class 5 climb out.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (78)
Photos (325)
Recordings (64)
Completed (171)
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Melissa Busby
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 6, 2020
Hiking

We needed more time to explore for sure! Scenery was unreal!

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Savannah Fordham
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 25, 2020
Hiking
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Kati Freeman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 15, 2020

Oh man. What an amazing hike!! Did this a few days ago as a day hike but every other person we ran into did it as an overnight. Started at Water Tank trailhead, did the sneaker route, ended at Crack in the wall and hiked the 3 miles back from coyote trailhead to water tank. Clocked under 20 miles, but we did get lost a few times as the trail is super hard to follow counterclockwise. A few notes - definitely need AWD or 4WD to get to Water Tank trailhead. We went about 35 MPH on Hole in the Rock rd and took us about an hour to get to Forty Mile Ridge. Dropped into the gulch via the sneaker route from water tank. There are cairns to guide the way to the drop in. Definitely bring rope - it’s worth it because it’s a pretty steep descent. Ran across a few others who were stuck and needed to borrow our rope to get out. There are a few places in the rock face to tie off, but I would suggest 250 feet if you want the rope to reach the bottom. I read other reviews that said it wasn’t a hard climb but it’s definitely not easy. We only ran into one natural spring about 3/4 of the way in, so bring lots of water. I wore shorts but I’d recommend long pants - there’s a lot of brush and bamboo. This trail is entirely sand and water so be prepared with water shoes if you don’t want to walk in soggy boots. The hike from the bottom of the gulch up to Crack in the Wall is all sand! We lost the trail here and had to do a steep climb up the red hill to the main trail. And the Crack in the Wall is so hard to find going counterclockwise even with the AllTrails maps. There are cairns at the top of the hill, but not in the correct spot. Hint: look further to the right of the cairns to find the opening to Crack in the Wall. If you have a large pack you’ll need to bring extra rope to get your pack up through it. This was the hike of a lifetime. Absolutely beautiful views, waterfalls, and parts of the river were breathtaking, very diverse scenery. If you’re looking to be off the grid and find some adventure I’d recommend this hike!!

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Becky McRae
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 11, 2020
Hiking

Did it as a day hike and appreciated the cooler weather. Beautiful trail!

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Shiv Maheshwaram
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 18, 2020
Hiking

It was a great hiking experience. People who love backpacking should never miss this hike. It was tough to find out the black lagoon a beautiful hidden location near to the natural bridge. I suggest everyone not to miss it. It took additional 3 miles to figure out the location but trust me its a worth satisfactory. Carry sufficient water if you are exiting towards hurricane wash as last 4 miles will be very hard to hike in sand. You will find springs allover the trial for the drinking water. Overall it was a beautiful and unfortunately underrated utah location

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Priscilla Villalobos
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 15, 2020
Hiking

Going down the crack in the wall was fun and nice views along the trail on the sand dunes after that there wasn’t much to see , no water, hot and lots of bugs . Wasn’t able to find the lagoon and getting out through the Jacob hamblin route was alittle difficult, we were lucky to find and rope to get us out . The hike back to the vehicle was long and hot , make sure to pack enough water .

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Chris Clouse
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 11, 2020
HikingNo shadeOff trailScramble

Much longer than AllTrails says. We clocked the hike around 18 miles, we did do this clockwise so more than doubled the elevation climb. Be prepared with water filter and rope and highly recommend doing this counter clockwise especially if doing in one day like we did.

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Zoe Carlos
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 7, 2020
HikingNo shadeScramble
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Jacob Kutsche
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 3, 2020
Hiking

Best hike I’ve ever done. Started at 10am got back to our car at 8pm. Did a total of 14.5 miles. Going down butt crack in the gulch was not as hard as I was expecting, but getting out was a little tougher at Jacob Hmblin Arch. The lagoon was super cool. Jumped off about a 50 foot cliff into it. Would not recommend, hit my butt immediately. My brother lost his Apple Watch in the lagoon so bring goggles with if you want to go on a mid hike treasure dive. If you’re planning on going to the lagoon make sure you know how to get there. We didn’t but thankfully a nice gent explained to us how to get there. Bring a water filter.

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Jianing Jiang
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 17, 2020
HikingNo shadeOff trailRocky

It was definitely the best and toughest trail I’ve ever experienced. You will see desert, rock, spring, forest...... just all you can name of in the nature. The scenery after cracking in the wall was nothing but astonishing. However, the first part beneath the canyon is not that friendly, you need to walk through the water sometimes and the hiking trail is hard to follow, you may meet some waterfalls which are almost impossible to climb over, you need find another way out. Another key point is the rope in Jacob Hamblin is missing, I was lucky to climb out with the help of another hiker’s rope. I’m not sure if I can make it without the rope. My recommendation was always getting yourself prepared if rope was unavailable there. Make sure bring more than 2L of water when you heading back to the parking lot, the heat was no joke there. It was one of my best experience, I hope it can also be yours. Stay safe and enjoy the view there

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David Platt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 12, 2020
HikingBugs

This trail checks so many boxes of what makes a hike great -- variety of scenery, variety of physical challenges, opportunity to explore, and plentiful drinking water. I recommend doing the hike counterclockwise since body friction will work in your favor downclimbing through Crack in the Wall and scrambling up the wall by Jacob Hamblin Arch -- the reverse would be much more difficult for both. The hike starts off routefinding through sand and slickrock. The cairns don't really appear until you get closer to Crack in the Rock. Are there footprints you can follow to get there? Yes! Are there footprints you can follow that will get you lost? Yes again! Can you tell the difference? I couldn't! The downclimb through Crack in the Wall is extremely straightforward, and there weren't any drops large enough to make me think twice. Folks with huge bags may want to bring rope to lower their packs, though I had no problem with my 22L and probably would had been fine with my 48L too. After the downclimb, you're treated to the most dramatic view of the hike. Folks I met at the gulch said you can go past Crack in the Wall a bit for an even more dramatic view before the downclimb; I guess I'll save that for next time. Rest of the hike is fairly easy -- you can either walk through the river (bring water shoes!) or take a path parallel to the river at most points. There are plenty of interesting features along the route, but I highly recommend taking a 10 minute detour to the Black Lagoon. You can find the location on Google Maps -- it's a super secluded swimming hole with gorgeous surroundings. The scramble out of the gulch before Jacob Hamblin Arch is physically demanding but very doable for those with scrambling experience. There was a rope today but I felt adventurous and wanted to push myself a little and wound up climbing without it. There are plenty of good footholds/handholds/resting spots along the cliff face and I felt challenged throughout the climb but never exposed or in danger. For those not comfortable with intense scrambling, there is often a rope there, but it's not guaranteed, so definitely have a Plan B. After the scramble out of the gulch, there's more routefinding across the sandstone (this time with minimal cairns). Definitely needed GPS for this. A final note on the road, the side road off Hole in the Rock Road to get to the trailhead was the most difficult (but not worst) dirt road I've ever driven on, even in an AWD Jeep. Plenty of badlands like terrain with DEEP trenches and no obvious way to pass. Much more challenging than your standard potholed dirt road. But like everyone else I made it somehow :)

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Kellen McCullough
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 3, 2020
Hiking

Made it to the trailhead in my 09 Outback with AT tires. Dude with a truck said he was surprised I got my Subaru there. I wasn't. Just keep your momentum through the sand and you'll make it. Pretty damn fun. Can't speak for making it there with regular tires though. We day hiked this loop instead of the original plan of backpacking due to muscle soreness and burnout from 10 days in Escalante. I'm glad we did for a variety of reasons. It was much easier, for one, especially when it hit 100 degrees that afternoon, and for two, as a person who loves solitude, there sure aren't many campsites that allow for that. There was a good amount of people in the Gulch, even on a weekday. Although the stretch from Cliff Arch to Coyote Natural Bridge was pretty light when we were there around noon. Crack-in-the-Wall was a breeze with a daypack. My girlfriend made it through carrying her bag. I used a rope to lower my bag after the 2nd crack because I thought it was cool, not because it was necessary. You'll definitely want some rope to lower your bags if you're backpacking, however. The views around Crack-in-the-Wall and during the descent were mind-boggling. I definitely recommend going out the point east of the Crack before descending. Incredible. Watch your step! The hike between the Crack and Jacob Hamblin was pretty easy. It was a slog at times but that was more a function of heat and how tired we were already. Bring water shoes/sandals.Walk in the water. Dunk your head. Get wet. Embrace shade. I also recommend climbing up to the Indian ruins. Watch your step up there too! After hanging out at Jacob Hamblin for a while, we reluctantly began our exit. We learned from other hikers that the ranger had JUST pulled three ropes on the exit scramble. I don't totally understand the justification. Just our luck... We went for it ropeless because we had to. I've done lots of scrambling in my day but this was a little hairy, in my opinion. There's a few places where you can't get lots of purchase. Be very careful on this without a rope. I imagine doing this ropeless with a heavy backpack would not have been very pleasant. Anyway, we made it, but it was certainly a little freakier than I imagined, and I'm not afraid of heights. Bring a rope if you're worried about there not being a rope, but someone in your group will still have to get up there to set it if you're doing this as a loop. Careful out there, folks. After the climb out, its a couple miles cross country to the trailhead. Use your route-finding skills to the stick to the rocks and lessen the amount of sand you walk in and your up/down. It's a slog at 100 degrees. Somehow I had service (T-Mobile) at the trailhead to inform people that I was, in fact, still alive. Bring a water filter, but there's several amazing springs in the Gulch that I filled at and drank unfiltered. One was approximately a mile? from the Escalante confluence. Can't miss it when walking in the stream. Look for foliage on the north wall. The other I filled at was right next to the climb out by Jacob Hamblin along the north wall. Perfect place to fill up before the slog out. 10.6 is a lie. There's no way. My Strava stopped for a few miles and I still logged 10.8. This is definitely in the 12-14 range. Why are there inaccurate mileages? This was the case at Golden Cathedral too. Someone needs to fix that... Incredible hike.

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TONYA Marshall
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 2, 2020
Hiking

I did this as a day hike on 5/30/20. My AllTrails app tracked me at 13.1 miles, my friends tracked 14 so I don’t think the 10.6 is correct. We parked at the furthest parking lot, we entered down Crack-in-the-wall, climbed out at Jacob Hamblin Arch, we immediately veered left at the top and did not follow cairns going straight. This cuts you straight through to the parking lot, my AllTrails app was helpful here. Crack in the wall was not as bad as I expected based on reviews. I did use ropes climbing out at JHA, they were already there so it was a quick option AND I only had a day pack. If I had an overnight backpack this climb would be slow and very sketchy without a rope. There are quite a few springs all along the canyon floor and the tall sandstone walls create good shade in a lot of places. This hike took us 7 hours plus almost 1.5 hrs drive, one way on Hole-in-the-rock road. I enjoyed every bit of this canyon, beUTAHful!

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Zach Harris
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 1, 2020

This was probably one of my favorite backpacking trips in Utah so far! Definitely recommend an AWD or 4WD high clearance vehicle if you drive to this trail head since there are deep sand spots in the road. For going down the crack in the wall you do not need a rope as long as you have at least two people in your group that can pass down the bags. Once you're into the canyon you can basically walk barefoot in the stream or on the sand banks all the way to Jacob Hamblin Arch (although we did see a leach but didn't get any). It feels amazing! For the scramble out of the canyon right before Jacob Hamblin Arch a rope would be very helpful. There were some ropes left there for people but they might get removed. I was able to do it with my pack and didn't use the rope. However, climbing experience is required to do this. Make sure to use your GPS to find your way back to the parking lot as it is not marked very well. Overall, amazing loop to do within a weekend.

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Dallin Hatch
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 26, 2020
HikingRockyScramble

This is an amazing Hike. Highly recommended. I hiked it from the bottom of the gulch up to the Arch and I highly recommend this route. Hike took 6 hours and we spent our time admiring the canyon and took a few breaks. The trail goes through the creek in the canyon so I would recommend bringing hiking sandals or other shoes to wear in the canyon and then your regular shoes to hike the rest. Lots of loose sand outside the canyon so that slows you down some too. Still highly recommended.

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Eric Thorson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 19, 2020
Backpacking

Fantastic. Started at the Trailhead, opted to hike west toward Jacob Hamblin arch first, doing the loop backward from what most do. The trail out to Jacob Hamblin arch is not well marked at all. The descent into the canyon is a bit steep but it's manageable even with backpacking packs on. Be prepared to get your feet wet as you will be hiking in/along the river the whole time. Coming up the crack in the rock, you'll need paracord or some rope strong enough to hoist your pack up, as it likely won't fit in the crack. Our rope broke and we had to break down our packs/take stuff out in order to fit them through. Highly Recommend this hike!!

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John Winslow
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 27, 2020
HikingBugsNo shadeOff trailRockyScramble
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Audrey Davis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 5, 2020
HikingRockyScramble
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Cowboy S
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 17, 2019
Hiking

Intense trail with lots of awesome sights to see. Those tackling this trail should be in good physical condition and not afraid of slick rock.

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