Antelope Canyon is one of the most famous slot canyons in the American southwest. Most people visit the popular tribal park covering Upper and Lower Antelope Canyon. There is a third way, however, to see the slot canyon. That is by water.
The paddle into Antelope Canyon is in the exposed main channel of Lake Powell. During times of low water, this area receives a lot of traffic. In Antelope Canyon itself, the lake is very narrow. Boats can approach at high speeds without seeing you. In addition the wakes that these boats create can reflect off canyon walls. Furthermore large tour boats visit the canyon. The create very large wakes that can overturn or swamp kayaks. Care should be taken to tackle large wakes and waves head on, and not let the waves breach the kayak from the side.
In 1963 the gates on Glen Canyon Dam closed and water began to fill up in Glen Canyon, forming Lake Powell. With the rising water, the lower 5 miles of Antelope Canyon, a spectacular slot canyon, were filled with water. During the pre-dam years, very few people had ventured up Antelope Canyon, save for river runners. A large pour-over stymied upstream exploration. Now, with the lake filling the canyon, the old pourover no longer presents a logistical problem for upstream travel, as boaters can venture as far as the water line.
This trip begins at Antelope Point Marina. From the launch ramp, paddle to the left (downlake) for approximately one mile. The entrance to Antelope Canyon is on the left, at River Mile 3, and is marked with a white buoy. Turn into this canyon. The walls grow taller and narrower as you get further into the canyon. The end can be reached, but it is not necessary. The canyon can be enjoyed from a brief exploration or deep adventure - the choice is yours.
It is possible to camp on the lake opposite the mouth of the canyon. - Jun 04 2012 Rob del Desierto