United States Wire Pass Slot Canyon

17 images 2 contributors

Laurent Martres

About this spot
A foray inside Wire Pass will give you a quick, but spectacular insight into the narrows of the Paria River area. Buy your self-permit (no quota) and follow the dry bed of the wash for about 1 mile before reaching the entrance to the first narrows. These narrows, a few dozen yards long, will give you a little preview of what awaits further on. Soon, you enter the true narrows of Wire Pass and move along between very dark walls, over a hundred feet high. Depending on how the last flash flood affected the canyon, you may have to scramble above choke stones as high as 8 feet at the first and/or second narrows; in some years, this may present a challenge to some. You'll eventually reach the junction with Buckskin Gulch at 1.7 miles from the trailhead (37.018986, -112.002518). Look for some faint petroglyphs at the base of the right wall, just at the junction. Follow Buckskin Gulch downstream as long as you like or time permits, the walls are higher and even more impressive than in Wire Pass. You'll likely encounter pools and mud-holes that will give you an inkling of what it looks like further down Buckskin Gulch and deep inside Paria Canyon.

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