Explore Some of the Best Hiking at Lake Powell

Explore Some of the Best Hiking at Lake Powell

Hiking at Lake Powell
Hike just about anywhere up to glorious views or to explore endless red rock canyons.

Trek by foot to waterfalls, rock formations, arches, Anasazi ruins, petroglyphs, caves, and more. Lake Powell’s shoreline is known for its diversity in its natural beauty. Whether you go trail blazing on one of the hundreds of marked trails, or whether you forge your own path, there is much to be explored and discovered.

The Stan Jones Map is a great resource in planning your trip as it marks the miles (buoys) from South Lake Powell and marks spots of interest along the way.

From Wahweap Marina (South Lake Powell)

  • Navajo Canyon – Buoy 10- The hike to Choal Falls is 8 miles roundtrip. After about 2 miles, the trail forks; follow the trail to the right to the falls and petroglyphs.
  • West Canyon – Buoy 25 – Hikers can go back as long and as far as they wish. You will encounter several pools and falls.
  • Last Chance Bay – Buoy 28 – lots of side canyons here with great mooring beaches. At the mouth of the bay you will find Gregory Butte; look carefully, and you can see that a portion of this butte is shaped like a camel.
  • Rock Creek Canyon, Middle Rock Creek Canyon and Dry Rock Creek Canyon – Buoy 36 – Each offers great beaches for mooring, fantastic fishing and breathtaking sunrises and sunsets against the towering red rock buttes. In this area, you’ll find several small arches and caves. Rock Creek Canyon is out of the wind, so it can be a great location for waterskiing.
  • Mountain Sheep Canyon – Buoy 44 – and Dungeon Canyon – Buoy 38 – each canyon offers solitude, small hikes into slot canyons, and great fishing. Note: as you approach the back of these canyons, be careful to watch for light colored areas of water where rocks are just beneath the surface and could damage the houseboat.
  • Rainbow Bridge
    Rainbow Natural Bridge is one of the most popular destinations along Lake Powell.
    Photo by: Al King
    Forbidding Canyon to Rainbow Bridge – Buoy 49 – This is about the halfway point between Wahweap and Bullfrog marinas – As you wind back into this canyon, you will pass a wakeless buoy line, take the next left turn. You’ll proceed through a very narrow passage; be careful to travel at a slow and safe speed. This will take you to a courtesy dock provided by the National Park Service. There, you can secure your powerboat next to the walkway then walk to the end of the walkway where a dirt path begins. (A houseboat can travel to this area; however it is much easier to maneuver a smaller boat here.) This is the path that will lead you to Rainbow Bridge. This hike is only 1.75 miles one way.

From Bullfrog Marina (North Lake Powell)

    Moki Canyon – Buoy 100 - 8 miles (45 mins by houseboat), explore caves and canyons where Native Americans tread hundreds of years ago; visit Anasazi ruins and petroglyphs.
  • Halls Creek Bay – Buoy 93 - an easy 35 minute houseboat chug from Bullfrog marina, this area offers great hiking in the spring and fall.
  • Iceberg Canyon – Buoy 79 - hike to Anasazi ruins and a natural dam(about 3 hours by houseboat from Bullfrog).
  • The Escalante - Buoy 68 - along the Escalante River Arm, take an easy hike to the natural stone arch at Davis Gulch. The Escalante River Arm is about an 8 hour houseboat drive from Bullfrog.
  • Hiking is fun for all ages at North Lake Powell
    Hiking is fun for all ages at North Lake Powell.
    Cathedral in the Desert – about 23 miles south of Bullfrog on the Escalante Arm, take a short walk up and over red rock ledges that open up into a chamber where the sandstone walls tower over 1000 feet above your head!
  • Anasazi Canyon – Buoy 52 – This canyon has a great beach for mooring your houseboat and an excellent hike. Depending on the time of year, there is a small waterfall at the back of the canyon, which is about a 45 minute hike.
  • Oak Creek Canyon – Buoy 51 Head to the back of the canyon to hike the Navajo Stairs (aka Moki Steps) that are carved in the sandstone to a rewarding view of other pillaring sandstone towers. The hike will take about 45 minutes each way.

Please note: accessibility varies by water level. Water levels above 3620 feet allow boaters to glide back to a place where small powerboats can tie off.

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