steep rock scramble
by Rented Mule
Located in the Virgin River gorge, at mile post 23 is a fantastic arch. To view this arch from I-15 (northbound), look out the passenger window at about 2:00, directionally. You will see an arch up on the top of the end of a large cove.
Find the parking area at mile marker 23 1/2 on the right hand side of the road. This is purgatory canyon. There is a large turnoff used by cattle ranchers. Once you park, head down the hill into the wash. You will see two cattle tanks before you descend. Once in the gravel wash, continue up the wash for about 500 yards. Look at the hillside to your right. This is the hillside you will have to find a way to scramble to the top of. If you do not wish to scramble up this steep hill, you may want to explore the wash and canyon. It leads to some interesting mines at about 3 miles up canyon.
If you proceed to scramble the hillside to your right, come to the top and look at the next two hills directly south. You will see a deer trail in the middle of this knoll. Take the deer trail up to the next level. from there, you will see another trail up to a third tier. It is on this third tier that you will walk across a smooth, meadow like mesa for a short distance until you reach a saddle. In this drainage, look west and you will see the backside of this arch. It makes a beautiful frame of the valley, the Virgin River, and the Interstate, below.
Caution: Steep sheer cliff exists on western edge. Not for children. Be safe, if you choose to hike this knoll it is your own decision. I take no responsibility for your actions.
2004-02-27 Rented Mule
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.