Horseshoe Canyon Trail

  • Distance: 3.5 miles
  • Time: 3 hours
  • Elevation gain: 600 feet
  • Difficulty: 3
  • Overall: 8
  • Reference: Southeastern Utah, about 45 miles south of the town of Green River.
  • User groups: Hikers only. No dogs. Good hike for kids. No wheelchair access.
  • Permits: No permits are required. Parking and access are free, but no camping is allowed within this unit of the national park.

Directions

From west of Green River, UT, take State Route 24 (Exit 147) south for approximately 24 miles to about a half mile south of the turnoff to Goblin Valley. Turn east on a dirt road. Bear right at the first fork, left at the second fork, continuing to a signed junction after about 25 miles. Turn left, and it's about six more miles from this junction with signs marking the way.

Maps

For a USGS topographic map, ask for Sugarloaf Butte.

Contact

Canyonlands National Park, 2282 South West Resource Boulevard, Moab, UT 84532; 435-719-2313 (general information).

Trail notes

Nowhere in America will you find a parallel to the stunning and ancient Indian rock art of Horseshoe Canyon. Some experts have declared its equal does not exist on earth. All this deep within one of the most beautiful canyons of the Colorado Plateau. And, if you want to camp, pitch a tent near the parking area, or hike up or down canyon until you're outside the park boundary. The sensitive nature of this area demands that no camping take place within this subunit of Canyonlands National Park. In less than a half mile after descending the canyon's floor, the first artwork appears. About three miles of canyon floor total will have revealed the outstanding art. Special notes: The National Park Service offers guided tours of Horseshoe Canyon in spring and summer. Call for information and reservations.

Information courtesy of Buck Tilton, author of Utah Hiking.

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