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This is likely a great time to hike this trail!  Check out "Prefered" months below, keep in mind this is an estimate.

Wire Pass, UT

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530 34 1
Guide 34 Triplogs  1 Topic
Rated  Favorite Wish List UT > Southwest > Jacob Lake N
Rated
4.7
4.7 of 5 by 21
 
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Statistics
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance One Way 1.74 miles
Trailhead Elevation 4,914 feet
Elevation Gain -200 feet
Avg Time One Way 3 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 2.07
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
Collective Slideshow
Inaugural Calculation next Tap
29  2018-05-08
Wire Pass to Lee's Ferry
outdoor_lover
14  2017-11-10
Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch
friendofThunderg
45  2017-11-10 Uncharted
42  2017-03-11
Wire Pass - Buckskin Gulch - Paria Canyon
ddgrunning
30  2016-10-14 Uncharted
5  2016-10-06 AZWanderingBear
30  2016-03-26
Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch
PaleoRob
55  2016-03-18
Wire Pass - Buckskin Gulch - Paria Canyon
John9L
Page 1,  2,  3
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Preferred   Oct, Nov, Mar, Apr
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  7:04am - 5:20pm
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Official Route
 
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Water
Nearby Area Water
Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch
0.0 mi away
3.4 mi
183 ft
Buckskin Gulch - Wire Pass to Paria River
Buckskin Gulch - Wire Pass to Paria River
0.0 mi away
28.4 mi
314 ft
Coyote Buttes North - Wire Pass TH
Coyote Buttes North - Wire Pass TH
0.0 mi away
6.0 mi
1,136 ft
Buckskin Gulch TH to Wire Pass
Buckskin Gulch TH to Wire Pass
3.5 mi away
4.4 mi
Coyote Buttes via Cottonwood Cove
Coyote Buttes via Cottonwood Cove
5.0 mi away
Middle Route Trailhead to Cobra Arch
Middle Route Trailhead to Cobra Arch
6.0 mi away
6.6 mi
300 ft
Coyote Buttes South
Coyote Buttes South
6.5 mi away
Long Canyon - West Clark Bench
7.2 mi away
1.5 mi
94 ft
Cat Stair Canyon - Car Wash
Cat Stair Canyon - Car Wash
8.1 mi away
0.5 mi
63 ft
Buckskin Mountain - AZT #43
8.4 mi away
10.5 mi
719 ft
[ View More! ]
Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Geology Nearby
Culture Nearby
Slot fever
by Randal_Schulhauser

Likely In-Season!
A three-day adventure to the Paria River Slot Canyons was finally realized after much planning. Primary objective was to "bag" the Big 3 Slots; Wire Pass, Buckskin Gulch, and Paria Canyon - WOW!

HikeArizona.COM listed a contact phone number and website for hiking and backpacking reservations. Called the Kanab BLM Office at 435-644-4600 twice and got no answer. The www.az.blm.gov/paria/ website indicated that the BLM on-line reservation system would be unavailable indefinitely due to internet security issues.


With 3 data points of frustration and the horrors of the BLM reservation system sited in many web postings and in Michael R. Kelsey's book "Hiking and Exploring the Paria River", we opted to take the "Gentleman's Approach" and base our adventure out of a local hotel for a series of day hikes. Plenty of lodging options either 30 miles to the East in Page AZ or 42 miles to the West in Kanab UT.

The Paria Ranger Station and Visitor Center is located on the South side of Hwy 89 between mile marker 20 and 21, just East of the Paria River. Local weather, road, and trail conditions are available here. Guide books and maps are also available for purchase.

From the Visitor Center, travel West on Hwy 89 about 5 miles. Just as Hwy 89 cuts through the Cockscomb between mile marker 25 and 26, turn South on House Rock Valley Road. On a historical note, House Rock Valley Road follows the original Honeymoon Trail used as a pioneer route from Lee's Ferry past the Vermillion Cliffs to Kanab and St. George. Travel about 8.5 miles until you reach the Wire Pass Trailhead. There's plenty of parking and washrooms at the Trail Head. At the Self Service Pay Station, pay per hiker day-use fee. Remember to display the registration receipt on the windshield of your vehicle. Overnight registration is only available at the Visitor Center or on-line (yeah, right!).

The Hike: From the Pay Station, the trail dips immediately into a wash. Note the flash flood warnings by paying particular attention to the local weather conditions. Also note that lack of storms at Wire Pass does not exempt this slot canyon from a situation similar to what happened at Antelope Canyon in August 1997 (visit www.lakepowell.net/tragedy.html). Follow the Wire Pass wash downstream towards the East for about 0.5 miles until you reach the signed junction for Buckskin Gulch and Coyote Buttes.

Continue East along the Wire Pass wash towards Buckskin Gulch. The wash will begin to box up and funnel towards the first slot. Enter the serpentine slot and admire the how the shadows constantly change the slot's appearance. There are boulders lodged in the slot, one resulting in about a 5-foot step down.

The first slot will soon open up to reveal an isolated area between the Cockscomb and Coyote Buttes ridgeline.

Follow the wash downstream towards the entrance of the second slot. This section of the slot canyon is amazingly narrow and deep. I had to keep my shoulders hunched forward to be able to pass through!

The slot will soon open up to join Buckskin Gulch. There is a large overhang area with carvings in the sandstone described as "cowboy art" in many trail guides. Climb up the ledge to explore additional carvings.

You have loop hike possibilities - Wire Pass TH to Buckskin Gulch TH Loop (5 miles) or Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch to Paria River White House TH Loop (20 miles). Or explore some of Buckskin Gulch before you turn-around back to the Wire Pass TH.

Having experienced the slot canyons a return trip with overnight backpacking will be on my MUST DO list!

Randal_Schulhauser

    BLM Division Reports Most hikers planning to travel the length of Buckskin Gulch choose Wire Pass as a shortcut, saving a few miles of walking from the Buckskin Trailhead. While Wire Pass serves this purpose well, it also offers a short, pleasant, day-hiking opportunity. In fact, Wire Pass is a slot canyon narrower than either Paria Canyon or Buckskin Gulch. While not as deep as those canyons, it narrows to barely shoulder-width for short distances.

    Wire Pass is a short, easy stroll from the trailhead parking area to the confluence with Buckskin Gulch. During hot summer months, its narrow slots provide cool relief from the soaring temperatures in the open sun above. Sometimes the temperature difference can be as much as 15 degrees.

    The entire hike follows the usually dry wash bottom. Occasionally, logs can be seen high above, jammed between the slot canyon walls; solid evidence that this bone-dry wash is not dry all the time.

    The visitor rules apply to the Paria Canyon, Buckskin Gulch, and Wire Pass portions of the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, AZ-UT. The objectives of the rules are to prevent further damage to wilderness resources and to improve visitors' opportunities to enjoy the area. The rules represent the minimum level of visitor management needed to accomplish those objectives.


    Fees

    a. BLM is operating a year-round fee/permit and reservation system.

    b. Use fees are collected for all visitors to Paria Canyon, Buckskin Gulch, and Wire Pass.

    c. The fee schedule is per person/day.

    d. Dogs are allowed in the canyons with the following requirements:

      1) Owners pay a daily use fee for each dog (fees are not required for guide dogs for the blind.)

      2) Owners be informed of rules and restrictions

      3) Owners agree to keep dogs under control at all times (to prevent harassment of wildlife and visitors)

      4)Owners dispose of dog waste with the same method used for human waste.

      5) All dogs must be on a leash in the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area portion of lower Paria Canyon.

    e. Day-use visitors to these areas deposit fees at self serve fee stations located at White House, Buckskin Gulch, and Wire Pass Trail heads. No reservations for day-use are needed. Each trip leader is required to fill-out a fee envelope and obtain fee receipt.

    f. Overnight visitors must make a reservation and pay fees at that time, either online or via FAX or mail, with BLM's fee project partner, Arizona Strip Interpretive Association (ASIA). A permit is then issued via mail, or you may choose to pick it up at one of two BLM offices.

    g. No fees are charged for children 12 years and under for day-use in Paria Canyon, Buckskin Gulch, and Wire Pass.

    h. Hikers must register at the trail heads when entering or leaving the area.

    i. To keep fees as low as possible, refunds, date changes, and group size changes will not be made. Processing these types of actions substantially increases the cost of administration, which requires charging higher fees to recover costs. Be sure of trip plans before making application and paying fees.

    j. Golden Eagle/Golden Age/Golden Access passes do not apply to use fees, but are only for entrance fees to areas such as national parks or some national conservation areas or campground fees.

    k. American Indian Access Rights - If it is determined that the canyons of Paria are sacred or traditional areas to local Native American populations, then Native Americans are exempted from paying fees.

    Reservations

    a. Reservations are required for overnight use in these areas. Permits (Link is further down the page, above the weather chart) are required before entry.

    b. All reservations are issued on a first-come, first-served basis.

    c. Each trip leader is issued a permit.

    d. Overnight use in Paria Canyon, Buckskin Gulch, and Wire Pass is limited to a combined trail head entry total of no more than 20 persons per day.

    Visitor Behavior

    a. Group size for all use in the canyons is limited to ten persons per group. All groups larger than ten must split up and begin hiking on different days. These groups are not permitted to rejoin during the trip. Minimum distance is two miles apart.

    b. Visitors staying one or more nights in the canyons must camp only in existing campsites or, if necessary and safe, on shoreline terraces.

    c. Wrather Canyon is closed to camping.

    d. All camp, latrine, and pack stock restraint areas must be at least 200 feet from springs.

    e. Cutting of trees, limbs, or other plants to make camp "improvements" is prohibited.

    f. Private recreational use of horses, burros, llamas, and goats is allowed in Paria Canyon. Horses must stay on the shoreline terraces.

    g. Campfires and burning of trash or toilet paper are not allowed in the canyons.

    h. Disturbing or defacing prehistoric or historic ruins, sites, artifacts or rock art panels is prohibited by law.

    i. All trash associated with an individual or group trip, including used toilet paper, must be packed out by that individual or group.

    j. The wilderness is closed to motor vehicles, motorized equipment, and other forms of mechanical transport, including bicycles and hang gliders.

    k. Hunters (during hunting season, in possession of a valid state license and permit/tag for the areas), livestock grazing permittees, and employees, contractors, and volunteers working onsite for a state or federal agency do not count against the total daily visitor limits, nor are they subject to fee requirements. However, these individuals are required to comply with group size limitations. They are subject to any closure or other restriction implemented to protect sensitive resources.

    l. BLM may, based on monitoring, temporarily or permanently close areas of the canyons in order to protect sensitive resources.

    White House Campground

    a. For campground use, visitors deposit fees at the self serve fee station located at the campground. Each group is required to fill-out a fee envelope and obtain fee receipt. The fee schedule is: per site/night.

    Commercial Guides and Organizations

    a. Organized groups, companies, or individuals who use the public lands for business or financial gain or benefit from salaries, or support other programs ( ie; professional guides, Sierra Club, schools, college clubs, Museum or Elder Hostel Sponsored trips, etc.) are considered commercial users.

    b. Commercial users intending to operate within the wilderness must obtain a Special Recreation Use Permit (43 CFR 8372) prior to operating on or utilizing public lands.

    c. The use of horses in conjunction with an approved Special Recreation Use Permit is allowed only in Paria Canyon from Bush Head Canyon downstream to the wilderness boundary.

    d. Commercial users may, after receiving authorization through procedures set forth in 43 CFR 8372, operate in the canyons under one or both of the following modes:

      1) Authorized commercial users will depend on visitors to contract their services when visitors have either:

        a)successfully acquired a non-commercial use permit for areas requiring reservations/permits or,

        b) desired a guide for areas not requiring reservations, such as day-use in the canyons or the remaining non-fee/non reservation portions of the wilderness.

        All authorized guides will be listed in various forms of BLM hiking information media, with the information sent to successful permit holders. Commercial guides may market their availability as guides. As guides are retained for service under this mode, they will not count against the group size limit or the total visitor limit for the given day. Parties will be limited to one guide each under this option.


      2) For areas requiring reservations/permits, commercial users compete with non-commercial visitors for permits on a first-come, first-served basis. Commercial users reserve no more than one entry day per week under this option. Fees for reserved dates will be paid at the time of reservation. For permits reserved under this option, guides will count against both the group size and the total visitor limit for the given day. BLM would not limit the number of guides per permit under this option.

    FLASH FLOOD WARNING!!

    July, August and September are the months with the highest flash flood danger due to thunderstorms, but they could happen any time of the year. The Paria Narrows and Buckskin Gulch are the most dangerous areas. If you find yourself in a possible flash flood situation, get to the highest point possible. Flood conditions usually subside within 8 to 12 hours. Get a long-range weather forecast before entering the canyons.


    Visitor Use Regulations for Coyote Buttes

    The visitor rules apply to the Coyote Buttes portion of the Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, AZ-UT. The objectives of the rules are to prevent further damage to wilderness resources and to improve visitors' opportunities to enjoy the area. The rules represent the minimum level of visitor management needed to accomplish those objectives.

      Fees

      a. BLM is operating a year-round fee/permit and reservation system.

      b. Use fees are collected for all visitors to Coyote Buttes. Permits (Link is further down the page, above the weather chart) are required before entry.

      c. The fee schedule is per person (permit required).

      d. Day-use visitors must make a reservation and pay fees at that time, either online or via FAX or mail, with BLM's fee project partner, Arizona Strip Interpretive Association (ASIA). A permit is then issued via mail, or you may choose to pick it up at one of two BLM offices.

      e. Dogs are allowed in Coyote Buttes with the following requirements:

        1) Owners pay a daily use fee for each dog (fees are not required for guide dogs for the blind.)

        2) Owners be informed of rules and restrictions

        3) Owners agree to keep dogs under control at all times (to prevent harassment of wildlife and visitors)

        4)Owners dispose of dog waste with the same method used for human waste.

      f. A separate reservation and fee payment must be made for each day requested.

      g. Golden Eagle/Golden Age/Golden Access passes do not apply to use fees, but are only for entrance fees to areas such as national parks or some national conservation areas or campground fees.

      h. To keep fees as low as possible, refunds, date changes, and group size changes will not be made. Processing these types of actions substantially increases the cost of administration, which requires charging higher fees to recover costs. Be sure of trip plans before making application and paying fees.

      i. American Indian Access Rights - If it is determined that Coyote Buttes is a sacred or traditional areas to local Native American populations, then Native Americans are exempted from paying fees.

      Reservations

      a. The Coyote Buttes Special Management Area (SMA) is limited to day-use only. No overnight camping in the SMA.

      b. Reservations are required for day-use in this area.

      c. All reservations are issued on a first-come, first-served basis.

      d. Each trip leader is issued a permit.

      e. Walk-in permits (no reservation) may be available at times. Reservations for available walk-ins may be made only at the Paria Contact Station up to seven days prior to the available date.

      Visitor Behavior

      a. The Coyote Buttes SMA is divided near Top Rock Spring into the Southern and Northern Coyote Buttes SMAs.

      b. Visitor use in the Southern Coyote Buttes Special Management Area is limited to no more than ten persons per day.

      c. Visitor use in the Northern Coyote Buttes Special Management Area is limited to no more than ten persons per day.

      d. The maximum group size limit in Coyote Buttes is six persons.

      e. Campfires and burning of trash or toilet paper are not allowed in Coyote Buttes.

      f. No private recreational use of horses, burros, llamas, and goats is allowed.

      g. Disturbing or defacing prehistoric or historic ruins, sites, artifacts or rock art panels is prohibited by law.

      h. All trash associated with an individual or group trip, including used toilet paper, must be packed out by that individual or group.

      i. The wilderness is closed to motor vehicles, motorized equipment, and other forms of mechanical transport, including bicycles and hang gliders.

      j. Hunters (during hunting season, in possession of a valid state license and permit/tag for the areas), livestock grazing permittees, and employees, contractors, and volunteers working onsite for a state or federal agency do not count against the total daily visitor limits, nor are they subject to fee requirements. However, these individuals are required to comply with group size limitations. They are subject to any closure or other restriction implemented to protect sensitive resources.

      k. BLM may, based on monitoring, temporarily or permanently close areas of Coyote Buttes in order to protect sensitive resources.

      Commercial Guides and Organizations

      a. Organized groups, companies, or individuals who use the public lands for business or financial gain or benefit from salaries, or support other programs ( ie; professional guides, Sierra Club, schools, college clubs, Museum or Elder Hostel Sponsored trips, etc.) are considered commercial users.

      b. Commercial users intending to operate within the wilderness must obtain a Special Recreation Use Permit (43 CFR 8372) prior to operating on or utilizing public lands.

      c. No commercial use of horses, burros, llamas, and goats is allowed.

      d. Commercial users may, after receiving authorization through procedures set forth in 43 CFR 8372, operate in the canyons under one or both of the following modes:

        1) Authorized commercial users will depend on visitors to contract their services when visitors have either:

          a)successfully acquired a non-commercial use permit for areas requiring reservations/permits or,

          b) desired a guide for areas not requiring reservations, such as day-use in the canyons or the remaining non-fee/non reservation portions of the wilderness.

          All authorized guides will be listed in various forms of BLM hiking information media, with the information sent to successful permit holders. Commercial guides may market their availability as guides. As guides are retained for service under this mode, they will not count against the group size limit or the total visitor limit for the given day. Parties will be limited to one guide each under this option.


        2) For areas requiring reservations/permits, commercial users compete with non-commercial visitors for permits on a first-come, first-served basis. Commercial users reserve no more than one entry day per week under this option. Fees for reserved dates will be paid at the time of reservation. For permits reserved under this option, guides will count against both the group size and the total visitor limit for the given day. BLM would not limit the number of guides per permit under this option.


    One-Way Notice
    This hike is listed as One-Way.

    When hiking several trails on a single "hike", log it with a generic name that describes the hike. Then link the trails traveled, check out the example.
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Directions
    Map Drive
    or
    Road
    TBD

    To hike
    Access to the Wire Pass Trailhead is via U.S. 89 in Utah between Kanab and Page. Visitors may obtain information about weather conditions at the BLM Contact Station, 30 miles west of Page, Arizona on Highway 89, or by calling 435-688-3230 for recorded information.

    Author writes:
    From Page, go North and West on Hwy 89 about 30 miles. Just as Hwy 89 cuts through the Cockscomb between mile marker 25 and 26, turn South on House Rock Valley Road. Travel about 8.5 miles until you reach the Wire Pass Trail Head. Note that you are in Utah, near the Arizona border. Just before mile marker 21 on the South side, you can find the Paria Ranger Station & Visitor Center. The Visitor Center has made a Wire Pass map available to hikers.
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