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The Wolverine/Horse Canyon Loop - Grand Staircase Escalante

David filled us in on some great trips to be done in Grand Staircase / Escalante and we settled on a Wolverine/Horse Canyon loop. Having just took a stroll through Death Hollow we took a long jealous look at Little Death Hollow but decided not to tackle the climbing and pools of water with the pooches.


We drove from Bryce over to Boulder, Utah, then out on the Burr Trail to the trailhead at Horse Canyon (this is a fantastic road trip). There was a fun-lovin’ guided horse party there to fill us in. We stashed our mountain bikes in the bushes, then drove to the Wolverine Canyon trailhead and camped for the night. In one of those surprisingly common small-world experiences, the last name on the trail register was that of a cohort, Fred Hirschmann, who we know from Old Faitfhul winters back in the 70’s and Alaska in the 80's. He’d been on the trail a few days before.

We got up on May 10th, loaded up packs for us and the dogs and headed down Wolverine. Pretty uneventful for the first bit – BUT we soon got into LOTS of petrified wood. We’re used to seeing this stuff in our Yellowstone neighborhood but this stuff was everywhere in the canyon bottom with big logs and stumps of it on the side and, according to the books and maps, a lot more up higher.



A Petrified Log

The canyon got a lot more interesting towards its confluence with Horse Canyon with some monumental amphitheaters and cool narrows.



We had planned to camp near the confluence of the 2 canyons, then do a hike down to Little Death to check it out, but the day got away from us and we had to haul our packs down that way just to find water. We ended up at a tasty camp site up out of the wash near a funky little cabin. There was water - sketchy water. Filters are good....

A great night under the stars - then a HOT hike out the next day. Towards mid-day it got pretty toasty and shade was tougher to find as Horse Canyon opened up. The dogs were really dragging. We ended up taking their packs and taking a lot of shade breaks to get through it.


Got back up to the bikes and we decided it wasn't the time to run the dogs on a 5 mile bike ride so Colette stayed with them and I pedaled to the car, then came back and we headed into Boulder for dinner. Another great trip - MUCH to do down there. Put it on your list for spring or fall....

A Google Earth screenshot of the route...

and if you're running Google Earth, you can check our track out here.

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Comment by Kate on February 4, 2009 at 2:44pm
Grand Staircase is amazing! Loved your blog and those wonderful pics! I've been once....saw Peekaboo and Spooky slot canyons. Want to go again someday!
Comment by Aubree Durfey on May 16, 2007 at 7:59pm
Woot! That was great-ola! Loved the pictures... and the story! Now I wanna go!

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