Hiking Lake Powell

Amazing views of Glen Canyon and the Colorado River

Glen Canyon National Recreation Area is not known for developed, maintained hiking trails. However, off-trail hiking is available just about everywhere. Just bring plenty of water and navigation tools.

For more information on hiking, visit the hiking page on the Glen Canyon NRA website. And remember to stop in at a visitor center to discuss your plans with a ranger before venturing cross country.

Land-accesible Hikes

There are some good day hikes that are on more-or-less established trails.

  • Horseshoe Bend (1.5 mile round trip, view of Glen Canyon and the Colorado River)
  • Hanging Garden (1 mile, a lush alcove with springs and ferns)
  • Wiregrass Canyon (6 miles round trip, a remarkable landscape of slot canyons, hoodoos and natural bridges)

Southern Utah is also renowned for its more technical hikes through slot canyons. Here's an introduction to the canyoneering of the area. Beyond that, you'll want a good guide or the expertise to get you safely through.

For more information on hiking, visit the hiking page on the Glen Canyon NRA website. And remember to stop in at a visitor center to discuss your plans with a ranger before venturing cross country.


 

Water-access Hikes north of Bullfrog Marina

Take your boat or kayak of choice north from Bullfrog Marina for a day (or days) filled with adventuring and hiking. Many of the easily-accessible canyons are marked by noting the buoy numbers — it’s advised to purchase a waterproof guidebook to have full details of each canyon, along with a topographic map. 

  • Moqui Canyon (boat/kayak needed to access, bouy 99)
  • Crystal Springs Canyon (boat/kayak needed to access, buoy marker 104)
  • Forgotten Canyon (boat/kayak needed to access), home to Defiance House ruins and Smith Fork slot canyons
  • Knowles Canyon (boat/kayak needed to access)

Most of these canyons also offer beaches, where you can camp or dock your boat for more exploration.


 

Technical Slot Canyons near Lake Powell

The hikes are many around Ticaboo and Hanksville en route to Bullfrog Marina. However, many of the Hanksville options are highly technical and will require either advanced skills in repelling and route finding, or hiring a guide (recommended for the inexperienced).  That said, these areas are beautiful and offer diverse options to mix up your trip to the Lake Powell area.

The most famous slots in Hanksville include:

  • Three forks of Leprechaun Canyon
  • North Wash
  • Maidenwater Canyon

These areas require repelling and offer gorgeous red rock narrows and incredible features. To be in a technical slot canyon requires good climbing skills, the proper gear and a sense of teamwork and camaraderie.

Southern Utah is also renowned for its more technical hikes through slot canyons. Here's an  introduction to the canyoneering of the area.