Wire Pass Trail

EASY 54 reviews

Wire Pass Trail is a 3.7 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Kanab, Utah that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

3.7 miles
206 feet
Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly



nature trips

trail running



wild flowers





washed out

Wire Pass is a short drainage that joins the much longer Buckskin Gulch slot canyon, and provides a convenient entrance point, enabling hikers to bypass the upper 4 miles of the gulch which are shallow and less interesting than the 12 miles downstream. From the trailhead, the streamway is 1.75 miles. For the first mile from the trailhead, the walk is along a wide, meandering streambed between low reddish cliffs, over soft sand that makes progress rather difficult. Signs discourage hikers from taking short cuts across the grassy banks inside the bends of the stream, since this can cause erosion. There is not much to see at first, except various lizards - the drainage is home to quite a few examples of the large desert spiny lizard, a species more interesting than most with colorful patches of orange, black and blue. The surrounding cliffs become gradually higher and closer together, and the last half mile has two good deep stretches of narrows. At the end of the second slot the cliffs open out suddenly at the confluence with Buckskin Gulch; downstream is a deep and enclosed one mile section before the gulch becomes quite wide for a while and so this would be a good target for a half day hike, for those who want just an introduction to the Buckskin canyon system.

Awesome slot canyon hike, pretty easy except large drop assisted with tree ladder. Well with a trip!

2 months ago


2 months ago

Beautiful trail. The canyon had a boulder blocking the way but there was a tree you could use to climb down. There is a trail to the right of the slot entrance that goes around this obstruction. Great views and colors.

4 months ago

Loved this trail!! Gorgeous views in canyon and at end. There is a boulder in the way close to middle of slot canyon which requires about 8' of vertical descent/ascent. Try to get past because the end is really cool!

6 months ago

Easy & fun

7 months ago

Great hike, one difficult spot about 8' high bolder to climb down from. Would be nice to have a rope

8 months ago

Drive south from Page to Marble Canyon, Az. on 89 then 89a west to House Rock Road. Turn east (right) onto House Rock Road which is 20 miles of heavily rutted road. I was driving a 4wd SUV without issue but it took 45 minutes to drive the 20 miles. Wire Pass hike was a nice slot canyon with one 12 foot drop which was interesting managing. We not from the area and found that many people we stopped and asked had no idea how to get to this location.

9 months ago

You feel like you are in one of The Indiana Jones movies ☺

9 months ago

nice canyon trail in the middle of nowhere.
We went on a fairly dry day in the middle of march. we dared to take the road in a sedan, the road is bumpy but the road is fairly ok until you get to the last mile where it can be more slidy cause of clay.

you walk in the wash 1mile or so until you get to the actual canyon. fairly soon in to the canyon you will find a boulder with a drop behind it. people say it's not bad going down it but we decided to bypass it by going the VERY long buckskin gulch trail instead. however we discovered that just before the wirepass canyon started there is a way around by going to your right up the rim (should be some cairns left to show the way) and then down again taking you directly in to the canyon (bypassing the boulder) bring plenty if water!

9 months ago

Amazing and unique experience

9 months ago

Drove down the road to the trailhead in a sedan in dry conditions. It was by far the most stressful driving experience of my life. Maybe I just suck at driving with mud tracks, but I wouldn't advise going down this road on anything smaller than an SUV.

Despite the dread of driving 8 miles back to the highway this was an absolutely amazing hike. The only other slot canyon I've visited was antelope and this blows it out of the water. The canyon walls weren't as majestic but the desolation of the place makes it feel like a real adventure. We only encountered 2 groups in our 3 hours there - which was both frightening and cool.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Great short, easy, hike through a very nice slot canyon that looks like pictures you've seen of cool red-rock rippled-by-water slot canyons.

Right before you enter the initial slot, look on your right for a cairn and an arrow made of rocks pointing up slope so that when you return out of the initial slot (because it is now blocked by a drop that you cannot scramble down), you can walk up, over, and around the large rock formation/hill and back down to the other side of the first slot's opening. Another slot starts starts again soon and you can walk through it to the confluence with Buckskin. At this confluence there is a large, awesome blind arch on the right. We wondered if it would evolve into an open arch at some point in the long march of geological time. Wire pass was dry but Buckskin was wet, sticky, heavy mud and we could only go north or south on that trail for a 100' or so.

Guide books say not to drive on road to the trail because the mud will 'make a mockery' of your 4 wheel drive. More to the point is that the road will likely be impassable because of numerous washes which cross it (they would be flowing with water).

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The turn-off from the highway to the road which leads to the trailhead is easy to miss, so watch out! Couple miles of bumpy driving, but once you arrive it's well-marked and there's an available restroom.

Be aware there's the $6 per person fee! It's an envelope system and the receipt is placed on your dashboard. Logbook is at trailhead as well.

The trail itself was beautiful, much of it passes alongside or through a wash. We got caught up in some rain just as we were leaving, so just keep an eye on the weather since flash flooding would be especially dangerous through a slot canyon!

Canyon was gorgeous and perfect in the mid-afternoon where we were there, but as some others have stated there is a bit of a drop off in the middle of the canyon. I'd approximate the drop to be about 10 feet and it's very difficult to navigate without a hiking partner since you can't really see your holds as you descend.

Highly recommend, both the drive and the hike were absolutely gorgeous and well worth the time!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Great Hike. Did it late March with my 9 yr old. There is one technical move in the first slot canyon section. Bear hug the Boulder and let your left foot find the rock and you are set. I carried my 9 yr old down this section. Totally worth it one you get past here.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Quiet and beautiful. It was very windy when we hiked last week so would recommend keeping a bandana or scarf handy to protect your face drone blowing sand. One dry waterfall to down climb that was a little tricky but totally doable with a buddy.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Amazing! Just amazing! Rock slide made the entrance a bit difficult to navigate but it's a must see.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Completed as part of a point to point hike from Buckskin Trail Head to Wire Pass Trail Head. Great Hike which included some nice slot canyon hiking. Was planning on hiking back to the Buckskin Trail Head but was able to get a ride back by 2 kind photographers coming out from a day at the wave.

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Hiked to the T at Buckskin Gulch and back. Beautiful slot canyon, petroglyphs, and rock formations. We wanted to go to "The Wave" but didn't have a permit. It only took us 2 hours.

Friday, August 08, 2014

For 12.5 miles the gulch is enveloped in a very narrow gorge 100 to 200 feet deep, flanked by vaulting, convoluted walls of Navajo Sandstone. Wire Pass, a gorge carved through The Cockscomb by Coyote Wash is the most popular entry into Buckskin Gulch. It is short but its narrows are even more confined than Buckskin. I completed this as a 4.5 day backpack with 3 others from my hiking group in Sedona, Az back in May 2010. Check out my website https://buckskinparia.shutterfly.com/ for info/images.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

nice short easy trail to see slot canyons

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