In Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Utah, there are two really cool hikes you have to do in the slot canyons. This is the place to go if you would like to try some canyoneering without the dangers of going 127 h or getting lost in a crazy maze of red mountains.
Entrance to the Peek-a-boo.
But I have to warn you, these canyons are not close to anything or anyone. We camped right next to them and we spend both the night and the day here totally alone. The roads to get here suck. Like really suck. We drove our rented Hyundai on these washboard roads, where the potholes were bigger than the car at times. The road is called Hole-in-the-rock for god sakes! The desert sand could get you stuck in the middle of freaking nowhere if you did not drive like a maniac to get across. Apparently our car made it, because I am here to tell you the story. But you should take this in consideration. You need to tell someone where you are going.
The road to get there is almost as exciting as the gulch itself.
Getting there, sleeping there. Click for enlargement.
Even the trail down to the entrance of the canyons are really hard to find. It is not well-marked and there are no signs. So you should be really careful not to get lost.
The “trail” down to the canyons. Click for enlargement.
The Peek-a-boo and Spooky Gulch are two narrow canyons in which you can only go in one direction, there are no tracks going of the main route so you can´t get lost. In the Peek-a-boo you can probably fit two people who is going in the opposite directions. But in the Spooky… you can forget about it. You can either walk to the big opening in the end of them and then turn back and go the same way to the beginning. Or Peek-a-boo can be combined with Spooky Gulch to make a loop hike. Because the Spooky is really spooky even if you are just slightly claustrophobic. It is not for everyone. And if you are just a little bigger than average, it might actually be hard to fit in the canyon. At one point, I actually had to remove my backpack and leave it behind because it could not fit in the canyon. Also my big SLR camera was to big for this hike. Sometimes the sides were really rough so it was easy to get small cuts and bruises.
The Peek-a-boo hike. Click for enlargement.
The Spooky Gulch hike. Click for enlargement.
The hikes are not long (about 6 km/3,5 miles) and it will only take a couple of hours to really explore the area and the slots. This was on my bucketlist, and it should really be on yours too! I will give this place 5 out of 5 stars. It is amazing, being all alone in the wilderness, stargazing in the desert, amazing canyons to explore and the surroundings are to die for.
Peek-a-boo and Spooky Gulch:
I have done a video about our roadtrip in the us. It is in 3 second long clips, because that is approximately how long my family can concentrate on my travel pictures/videos before they start to fade off ;-D You can see the video below.
Have a nice day,