Cliff Hanger Trail

This trail is the only vehicle route onto Amasa Back, a rather high isolated area bounded by Kane Springs Canyon, Hurrah Pass, Jackson Hole, and a big loop of the Colorado River. The views are unusual and spectacular, and there is some tough four-wheeling at the start - real tough if Kane Creek is full. Farther along, there is a cliff-side ledge that gives the trail its name. There are some petroglyphs and other evidence of early visitation. The hardest part is the first quarter mile after leaving the county road.

Cliff Hanger Difficulty Rating: 6 (old 4)

Scenery: As you climb along the base of the sheer cliff walls of Kane Springs Canyon, the Behind-the-Rocks fins and La Sal Mountains come into view. The cliff edge looks into Jackson Hole, an abandoned river course with a central butte. A spur leads to a spectacular Colorado River view toward Moab. The farthest viewpoint, atop a sheer cliff, has a long vista down the river and is a great cliff-edge picture point.

Road Surface: Most of the road surface is rock. It crosses various sandstone layers that create difficult stair-step ledges. There is some sand, some dirt amid the rock layers, and some fairly level slickrock.

Highlights: The most difficult sections are the descent and return between the graveled Kane Creek Road and the creek and the climb out of the creek. The creek crossing can range from dry sand through quicksand to deep water, depending on recent weather. The steep, irregular ledges require good clearance and maneuverability. A switchback farther along leads to a rocky climb that asks for good wheel placement or a flexible suspension - or both. On the cliff-edge section, one eroded grade is attention-getting on the return trip.

Information courtesy of Red Rock 4-Wheelers, Inc

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