Explore the most popular birding trails near Blanding with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Outstanding trail. One of the best in Canyonlands or Arches. Went counterclockwise on the loop. The sights are amazing and you really do feel like you’re on another planet sometimes. The loop is almost completely exposed, so take the water requirements very seriously. Really took our time to enjoy (7 hours) and started at 6am / dawn. Only ran into one person on the first 10 miles and throughout the entire loop and he was a ranger going out to check on some back country campers. Saw about 10 people in the last mile and a half or so. No real difficult parts, moderate climbing, just long and very hot. There were 4 of us dad, mom and teenage son and daughter. We’re in pretty good shape and went out with 15 liters of water between us and had about 2 liters left at the end.

One of my favorite hikes I’ve ever done. Joints, rock scrambling, views- this hike has it all. It rained late in the afternoon which sent it to a new level of magical, but do bring jackets if it’s monsoon season— be prepared for lightning and flash floods. Water, at least a gallon, is a MUST for in the summer. 5L is better.

What a spectacular trail! My husband and I have been hiking and camping a ton in the last few years, and this is one of our top 3 favorite hikes of all time. We didn't see any hikers until we closed the loop and were back at the viewpoint. If you wanted a taste of this trail but not the full 11 miles, you could just hike to the viewpoint where the trail begins the loop and head back, that'd be about 6 miles I think, and you'd still see some pretty amazing stuff. Google pictures of the 'joint' if you want motivation to do the full loop though :)

It can be brutal in the heat of the day, so PLEASE be smart and bring tons of water and start EARLY. We got to the trail at 6:30, but really 5:30 would have even been better. It was a 100+ degree day and took us about 7 hours. We had a real fast pace the first half, but as the trail had more incline/slickrock areas and the day got warmer, we slowed a bit. We had 3L in water bladders plus about 5 nalgene sized water bottles (include tabs of electrolytes/vitamins to mix in our waters) for the 2 of us, and wish we would have had maybe 1 more litre of water. We saw so many people ill-prepared heading out on the trail late in the day, don't let that be you. Found the trail to be well marked as well.

hiking
23 days ago

Not much of a hike, quick loop around pockmarked section of slickrock. A couple of nice rock formations. good for kids.

great hike. bring plenty of water. fantastic views.

Pot holes were dry (as expected) and the views were about the same as what you can see driving around. I didn't think it was worth a stop

hiking
1 month ago

This is a lovely hike. My four star review is due to the monotonous terrain prior to getting to the arch. It’s a ton of sand, and it’s likely you’ll be emptying out your shoes quite a bit. It’s pretty flat, but long. If you’re looking for a more strenuous hike with changing views, you may want to look for another trail.
The arch is definitely worth it at the end.

We began at Owl around 2pm in 95°F weather. We came upon our first ruin, about half a granary, about 100 feet from the top. The second bunch of ruins we almost missed, being hidden behind a "waterfall". We didn't see any after those until we reached the confluence, at which we decided to take a day hike south. We came upon 2 granaries on that hike, one circular and one rectangular structure. There was another granary we found that was falling apart. All of the structures going past the confluence were very hard to spot and very easy to miss with their camouflage construction.The easiest way to spot them is to look for their perfect square openings. We didn't see any structures on our way back up Fish. Although there is a small creek with flowing water right along the trail. I'd do this hike again and make my way farther south to find more structures if I knew there was water to be found south of the confluence.

This is truly a must do trail if you are in the area. We went on 4-4-18 and it was an overcast day, so luckily water wasn't an issue for us. We hiked it in six hours (stopped for lunch and to play on some rocks). We took our boys, 14 and 12, and they had no problem, other than the occasional whining, lol. Easily a day trip from Moab. I had read a review to hike this in a counter clock-wise direction and I'm really glad we did that. The first part seemed mostly downhill (once on the loop) and I couldn't imagine having to do that all up-hill. Plus, it really saves the best for last on the loop. I read an REI blogger compare this hike to "Alice in Wonderland" meets Dr. Seuss. It really does have that whimsical feeling with the rock formations. It's amazing!!!

Hikes just don’t get any better than this! The Needles District completely blew us away! (and we’ve been to Bryce, Zion, Arches and Canyonlands Island in the Sky District). Well worth the additional drive time to get there, and NO CROWDS! Words can’t describe the beauty and diversity of this hike! We took a ranger’s advice and did the loop clockwise, although most reviews recommend counter-clockwise. Wish we had listened to the reviews on this one. My husband struggled going down a ladder in one of the slot canyons (going up would have been easier). I also think the back 1/3 of the loop would have been easier counter—clockwise. We also regretted not bringing more water. Trust me, take what you think you need and double it! Having to ration our supply made the last two hours pretty brutal. It took us 7 hours including about 45 minutes for photo breaks and lunch. We also should have been on the trail by 7 a.m. instead of 9, which had us still hiking with very tired muscles during the hottest time of day (83 degrees),. If you don’t consider yourself to be in above average physical shape, don’t attempt the full loop. Just go to the viewpoint (that still 6 miles and quite a workout). This is also a very technical hike, so be sure you take poles and good hiking boots.

Wow! Easily one of the best hikes I’ve ever done. There was lots of variety on this hike and unbelievable views from many different angles of each canyon. We started at 8:45am in May and completed in 5.5 hours. This hike had it all...nice elevation gain, scrambling, some slot canyons that were only 2ft wide, and wide open flat area inside the needles that felt like another world.

Wonderful day hike. Make sure you take enough water. The last 0.25 miles is a steep scramble, but well worth it.

You don’t need 4 wheel drive for this one. Lots of people doing the drive in rental cars. Very scenic throughout. Great campsites along the way. Remote.

First hike of Canyonlands for this Canadian. I initially thought hey- great loop location so I can check out other trails along the way. But wow did this ever WOW. The views of The Needles are magnanimous. The enormous size of the park is captured into perspective when doing the Chesler Park Loop. It’s amazing, great for all ages and levels of experience. Just prepare to take your time if you go in +25C weather- don’t time budget at risk of heat exhaustion.

This is a great trail and has some amazing views! Getting up to the loop at times seemed more of a difficult trail, but there are places to take a quick rest if need be! The loop was great, marked well with cairns! Completed the trail clock-wise.

We started this trail around noon, which made for a very sunny, hot hike. We stayed on top of re-applying sunscreen, brought plenty of water, and did just fine.

Glad this was one of our lasts hikes though, definitely got some blisters. Completely worth it, but good socks and shoes are a must!!

Also, this would be a good trail to download before completing. Cairns mark the trail well, but having another way to confirm you’re on the trail is helpful at certain points.

Amazing hike. Superb views. The trail is marked really well. The elevation is not a problem either.

This was a great trail to take in all different kinds of scenery! The views from every turn were unreal. This is a great option if you spend just a day in Canyonlands.

hiking
3 months ago

Fun trail with some trail finding to do. Cool ruins and scenery. We did see some bear scat, but nothing to be alarmed about. A little bit tough to get out the Fish Creek side. There was a rope there when we did it and it was helpful. Some fore thought and planning and this can be a great over night hike. My GPS tracks with all side trips was right at 20 miles.

This was chalk full of ruins and rock art! The hike itself wasn’t a lot of elevation gain but long. We Stayed overnight 2 nights. Water is scarce even in the spring so make sure you bring a good water filter. I could see this getting really hot in the summer. We got a little lost before Sheiks canyon and if I ever did this again I’d make sure I had a gps that I could run constantly. Seriously amazing to see all the ancient ruins. Also people were few and far between which was great. We only saw two other people on our second day.

Very fun and worthwhile trial for a day hike! The trail involves elevation changes, climbing over rocks, climbing some ladders, and even crawling through crevasses. It can be tricky to navigate, with numerous junctions, but worth it for the great views, beautiful sedimentary beds, and desert plants. Lots of lizards too!

hiking
3 months ago

This a great hike, but I would not call it family friendly or easy. There are quite a few areas with drop off exposure and when you have 1200+ feet of elevation gain/loss, it’s not going to be easy. We made it down and back up, but not without considerable effort helping the kids. I would also not do this mid day as it has constant sun exposure.

An amazing place to experience, with limited people and ample water at the end of March. I detoured off course to spend the first night at the mouth of Green House Canyon, 2.5 miles west from the confluence of Bullet and Grand, before getting water at Green House Spring and then backtracking to complete the route.

Four days seemed about right for this trip, in which I logged a total of 38 miles in-canyon with my planned detour and numerous side trips to the Anasazi ruins along the way.

hiking
3 months ago

Amazing day hike with a stunning view at the end.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked on March 22, 2018. This hike had a bit of everything! Gulches, a “meadow” (park), rock scrambling, hoo doos, slot canyons, and skies for days. So far, this is my favorite Southwest hike. If you’ve only got one day to spend on Canyonlands, this is a great place to spend it.

off road driving
3 months ago

Amazing views the entire way but if you get to the end, a real treat. Seeing the river so far below is hard to describe.

We got there just after sunset so the colours were vivid.

Drove it in a stock Cherokee Trailhawk with no problems. A couple of bumps to the underside but no big deal. The last kilometre gets pretty rocky. Vehicles with more clearance and larger tires will laugh at this.

A great little trip.

hiking
3 months ago

One of the coolest hikes I’ve ever done. Views are spectacular and the end is worth the miles and navigating up, over and around rocks!!! If you keep your eyes out for the stacked rock trail markers it’s not hard to stay on course. This is most definitely a hard hike though.

Hike up and back is very easy. Trail is marked well. Scenery is incredible and it was worth going down into the canyon to see it up close. Very snowy day so there were very few people around. I think we saw one other group hiking.

backpacking
4 months ago

Stayed at Chester Park 4 and it was an amazing campsite. Perfect views of the sunset. Trees and nice area to set tent under. A private cave behind the camp you can climb up in.

We hiked this trail on 13 February 2018 and loved it. The weather was comfortable and cool. We hiked it counter clockwise and that worked very well for us. We were the only ones on the trail, the entire time. The trail is easy to follow, it is well marked but you do have to pay attention to the markers all the time. It is very strenuous and rugged and involves a lot of scrambling and climbing. Great stunning views the entire time, so this trail never gets boring. A great workout with amazing scenery. Make sure to take plenty of water, no matter what time of year you go. Pick a cooler time to hike, preferably in the off season. Bring a lot of snacks and a sandwich. Pack more than you think because it can take you all day out there. The trail offers back country campsites for those who want to sleep out there and finish the next day.

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