Day Hikes

Hikers walk along raised dirt trail along a shallow clear river
Hikers explore the trail along the Paria River at Lees Ferry.


The arid desert that makes up the landscape of Glen Canyon can be beautiful and unforgiving. There is little to no shade, questionable cell phone reception, and no water available on these trails. During the warmer months dangers include exposure to extreme heat, dangerous desert wildlife and potential flash floods. Prepare for your hiking adventure by following these steps:

  • Avoid hiking during the hottest parts of the day. Check the local forecast as you plan. .
  • Drink plenty of water. Even when you are not thirsty your body can lose large amounts of water without you realizing it. Be aware of balancing fluid and electrolyte levels. Have with you at least 1 gallon (4 L) of drinking water per person, per day.
  • Wear proper clothing for hiking on hot, unshaded trails.
  • Do not enter trails through washes or canyons if there is a potential for a flash flood. Check the local forecast as you plan.
  • Know what areas your pets can hike with you
  • Practice Leave No Trace Principles, most importantly packing out all human waste and trash.
  • Visit with respect.

Hike in canyon drainages and on slick rock when possible. Avoid creating a network of social trails. By using existing paths and campsites you prevent unnecessary damage. Don't bust the crust. Cryptobiotic soil crusts are alive and essential for arid ecosystems. Once stepped on, this fragile crust takes years to regrow.


Page/Wahweap Area

Horseshoe Bend
One of the most iconic features at Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Hike the accessible hardened trail leading to an overlook viewing platform. Much of the rim of the canyon remains exposed, so watch footing and keep track of children and pets. Be prepared with plenty of water and know there is little shade along the trail. Avoid hiking at the hottest parts of the day.

Trailhead: Approximately 5 mi (8 km) south of the Carl Hayden Visitor Center on Highway 89, just south of highway marker 545, turn west to enter the parking lot.
Non-NPS Fee required when parking at Horseshoe Bend. Learn more about parking fees by visiting the website for the
City of Page .

Easy Round-trip Distance:
1.5 mi (2.4 km)

Vermilion View Trail
The Vermilion View Trail takes visitors along a canyon edge trail, approximately 7.5 miles and 700 feet above the Colorado River. The scenic trail walk offers views of the winding river, slickrock, rock formations and opportunities to see a variety of desert wildlife that call the fragile landscape home. Within this trail scenic overlooks include Horseshoe Bend and the Dam Overlook.

Trailhead: Enter the trail at Glen Canyon Bridge, Dam Overlook, or Horseshoe Bend. Look for a trail lined with natural stone.

Moderate Round-trip Distance:
approx. 14 mi (22.5 km)

Dam Overlook
Follow the trail down steep, uneven rocky steps to views of Glen Canyon Dam and the Colorado River. Hand railing provided intermittently.
Few shade pavilions. Steep cliff edge in some parts; Use caution.

Trailhead: From Highway 89, turn west on Scenic View Road about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) south of the Carl Hayden Visitor Center. Take the first road to the right and park in the parking area at the end of the road.

Easy Round-trip Distance:
940 ft. (286 m)

Hanging Gardens
Securely hidden by Jurassic Navajo sandstone, this seep spring quickly takes hostage every drop of rainwater it can absorb creating a lush plant and animal habitat.

Trailhead: The turn-off is 1/4 mile (0.4 km) east of Glen Canyon Bridge (the opposite side of the bridge from Carl Hayden Visitor Center) on Highway 89. Trailhead parking is 500 yards (455 m) off of Highway 89.

Moderate Round-trip Distance:
1.5 mi (2.4 km)

The Chains
Explore this area with a self guided adventure through slickrock sand formations. Great views of canyon walls and the Glen Canyon Dam. Lakeshore access is possible depending on the current lake elevations.The lake is very deep at this location and good swimming skills are required.

Trailhead: Just east of Glen Canyon Dam, take a gravel road heading north off of Highway 89. Turn left pass the Hanging Gardens parking area, and continue down the rough dirt road to reach the first of two parking areas.

Easy-Moderate Distance Varies

Explore the area across from the Wahweap Entrance road for a self-guided adventure through slickrock sand formations. Watch your step, fragile rock shelves underfoot.

Trailhead: Parking to explore this area is reached near the Beehives Campground, across from the Wahweap South Entrance road.

Easy Distance Varies

Stud Horse Trail
Build your own adventure when exploring the 6.5 mi (10.4 km) network of trails. Explore an area with large hoodoos scattered throughout and distance views of Lake Powell and Skylight Arch.

Trailhead: Take Highway 89 north 7.6 mi (12.2 km) past the Carl Hayden Visitor Center. Turn left on to Seismograph Road and follow for 0.75 mi (1.2 km) and turn left. Continue 1.5 mi (2.4 km) until a BLM wayside and a fork in the road, keep left. Continue on this road as it curves right to head west to connect to Powerline Road. Stay on this Powerline Road for approximately 1.1 mi (1.7 km) and turn right heading north and up onto the mesa. High clearance vehicles are recommended.

Easy Distance Varies

Wiregrass Canyon
This sandy wash takes you through a small canyon and requires some scrambling and detours. Look for cairns (small stacks of rocks that act as trail markers) to lead you out. Wayfinding required.

Trailhead: From Page, drive north on Highway 89 about 12 miles (19 km) to Big Water, Utah. Between mile posts 7 and 8, turn right, in the opposite direction of the Big Water Visitor Center. Turn right again in 0.3 mile (0.5 km), at a sign reading, “Glen Canyon National Recreation Area – State Highway 12.” Drive 4.6 miles (7.5 km) to the Wiregrass Canyon Back Country Use Area and park in the pullout.

Easy Round-trip Distance:
6 mi (9.7 km)

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Regional Hikes Near Page, AZ


Lees Ferry

Cathedral Wash
Descend into the rocky wash, traveling through the Kaibab Limestone and Toroweap Formations of the Grand Canyon Group. Many interesting formations and fossils may be seen, along with plants and desert critters.The trail ends as the bottom of the wash as it spills into the the Colorado River. Some rock scrambling and wayfinding required. Do not hike when there is a potential for flash flooding.

Trailhead: Follow the Lees Ferry access road 1.3 miles (2.1 km). The trailhead is at the pull out on your left. You can access both upper and lower Cathedral Wash from this parking area.
No overnight parking.
Moderate Round-trip Distance:
3 mi (4.8 km)

Lonely Dell Ranch
The self-guided walking tour follows an improved dirt road leading back to the ranch and orchard with two uneven dirt trails leading to the ranch buildings and grassy picnic area. Walk among the fruit trees and pick what is in season. Watch your step, as hand dug irrigation channels help bring water to the orchard.

Trailhead: Follow the Lees Ferry access road approximately 5.1 miles (8.2 km). On the left a gravel roads leads you back to a small parking area at the start of the ranch. Take a walk through the gate to the orchard, ranch, and cemetery beyond.
No overnight parking.
Easy Round-trip Distance:
1 mi (1.6 km)

River Trail
The self-guided walking tour follows the trail along the river front of Lees Ferry. Starting near the gravel parking lot by the boat ramp, walk alongside old stone buildings that line the once busy river crossing area. Mix of gravel to rocky to sandy terrain with no shade. Practice caution during extreme heat.

Trailhead: Follow the Lees Ferry access road 5.8 miles (9.3 km) to the boat launch. A gravel parking lot at the end of the paved area will give you access to the start of the historic district.
No overnight parking.
Easy Round-trip Distance:
3 mi (4.8 km)

Spencer Trail
A short but strenuous hike with amazing views of the Colorado River and the City of Page, this rocky climb up switchbacks ascends out of the canyon surrounding Lees Ferry.
Avoid hiking during the hottest part of the day. Best times include Spring and Fall.

Trailhead:Follow the Lees Ferry access road 5.8 miles (9.3 km) to the boat launch. A gravel parking lot at the end of the paved area will give you access to the start of the historic district. Divert from River Trail roughly .36 miles (.58 km) at posted junction. No overnight parking.
Difficult Round-trip Distance:
4.4 mile (7km)
Elevation Gain:
1,700 ft. (518.2 m)


Regional Hikes Near Lees Ferry



Red Wash Hike
A sandy hike that involves rock scrambling to lead in and out of the wash. Great beginner trail that illustrates how the power of water formed much of the local landscape. Be prepared to get muddy and wet. Do not hike when there is a potential for flash flooding.

Trailhead: Access near the Bullfrog Visitor Center.
Easy Round-Trip Distance:
1 mi (1.6 km)

Bullfrog Campground Hike
A fun trail to acclimate for longer desert excursions. Slight elevation gains allow for great views of Bullfrog Marina, Halls Crossing, Navajo Mountain and the Waterpocket Fold. Some areas the requires a small amount of steep rock scrambling. Use caution. Do not hike when there is a potential for flash flooding.

Trailhead: Start the hike from the Bullfrog Campground Loop B, or park at the ferry lot and walk up to the trailhead approximately 100 yards to the trailhead. The trailheads of this point-to-point trail are .4 miles (.64 km) apart.
Easy One-Way Distance:
1.5 mi (2 km)

Pedestal Alley Hike
Experience towering rock sculptures as red canyon walls surround a hike not heavily traveled. Follow along the wash approximately 1 mi (1.6 km) until rock formations appear in the distance. Do not hike when there is a potential for flash flooding.

Trailhead: From the Bullfrog Visitor Center drive 4.4 miles (7 km) north on Hwy 276 to the marked junction with the Burr Trail. Turn left and drive 4.8 miles (7.7 km) down the Burr Trail. The parking area can be found on the opposite side of the Burr Trail, approximately 50ft (15.2 m) north of the trail head.
Moderate Round-Trip Distance:
3 mi (4.8 km)

Defiance House ( Accessible by Boat ONLY)
Boat into Forgotten Canyon as far as lake levels allow. Some wayfinding through a sandy wash may be necessary to find the trail. Keep an eye on the cliff to your left to spot the pictographs that inspired the name. There are steps leading up to the 800 year old archeological site. Visit With Respect. The structures are made of local materials and mortar that can easily be damaged. Pets are not allowed in the site.

Getting There:
A boat trip up from Bullfrog, approximately. 40 minutes,15 miles (24 km) by water.
Easy One-Way Distance:
1 mile (1.6km)
varies with changing
lake levels.


These hikes are all accessed off Hole-in-the-Rock Road, a rough, unpaved road that requires high-clearance vehicles. Check road conditions before heading to the trailhead. Learn more on the BLM's Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument website.

Dance Hall Rock
Hike at your leisure over sandy/rocky terrain into a natural red rock amphitheater.
On the Hole-in-the-Rock Road 36.5 miles south from Highway 12, turn east at the BLM interpretive sign and continue to the parking area.
Easy Round-trip Distance:
3 mi (4.8 km)

Devil's Garden
Hike at leisure over sandy/rocky terrain among hoodoos and arches. On the Hole-in-the-Rock Road 13 miles south from Highway 12, turn right at the sign for Devil's Garden. Continue 1.5 miles to the parking area. Picnic tables, grills, and pit toilets provided by BLM. No overnight camping.
Easy Round-trip Distance:
1 mi (1.6 km)

Coyote Gulch
Day use does not require a backcountry permit, but please sign the trail register. Learn more about trailhead options for day hikes by visiting the Coyote Gulch webpage.
Moderate Distance Varies

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Check out our Commercial Use Authorization page for guided hiking services.

Last updated: February 7, 2024

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

PO Box 1507
Page, AZ 86040


928 608-6200
Receptionist available at Glen Canyon Headquarters from 7 am to 4 pm MST, Monday through Friday. The phone is not monitored when the building is closed. If you are having an emergency, call 911 or hail National Park Service on Marine Band 16.

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