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Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge, AZ

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Rated  Favorite Wish List AZ > Northeast > Hotevilla
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Difficulty 0.5 of 5
Route Finding 1 of 5
Distance Round Trip 0.3 miles
Trailhead Elevation 3,525 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 0.5 hour
Backpack No
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
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Photos Viewed All Mine Following
4  2018-06-04 Tortoise_Hiker
9  2017-10-01 rcorfman
70  2016-03-18
Wire Pass - Buckskin Gulch - Paria Canyon
22  2015-11-09
Jackrabbit Draw to Lee's Ferry
14  2015-03-08 cw50must
217  2014-05-31
Utah/Arizona Strip Trek - May/June 2014
9  2013-09-17 outdoor_lover
10  2012-09-19 paulhubbard
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Author Randal_Schulhauser
author avatar Guides 71
Routes 98
Photos 9,967
Trips 1,009 map ( 9,248 miles )
Age 59 Male Gender
Location Ahwatukee, AZ
Associated Areas
list map done
Navajo Nation Reservation
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Preferred   May, Sep, Oct → 5 PM
Seasons   ALL
Sun  6:09am - 6:33pm
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Fauna Nearby
Flora Nearby
Geology Nearby
Named place Nearby
Vermillion view
by Randal_Schulhauser

Likely In-Season!
With the Glen Canyon Dam Overlook and Horseshoe Bend View available as HikeArizona.COM trip logs, might as well complete the "hat trick" with a stop at the Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge.

The stunning views of Marble Canyon offered from the bridge are not for those with any great fear of heights! If you can brave your vertigo, you will also find views of the Vermillion Cliffs to the north and west along with views of the Echo Cliffs to the south and east. Check along the Vermillion Cliffs for any large birds circling to catch an updraft. They are likely to be California Condors from the Vermillion Cliffs re-introduction. Twenty-Five Condors now call these cliffs home.

There is an interpretive center on the north side filled with local history. The original Navajo Bridge was built by the Arizona Highway Department, and designed by the Kansas City Structural Steel Company in 1929. Arizona was not a very developed state in 1929, and only dirt roads approached both sides of the bridge. Before the bridge was built, Lee's Ferry was the only means of transportation between Arizona and Utah. Lee's Ferry was a undependable way to get across the Colorado River, because during storms, or floods, the ferry would not run. The Navajo bridge remained the only link between Utah and Arizona for almost thirty years. The engineering techniques that were used to build this bridge were cutting edge technology in 1929. When the old Navajo bridge was finished it was the highest steel-arch bridge in the country, extending 470 feet above the Colorado River. The bridge currently connects The Grand Canyon National Park and Glen National Park, which are on one side of the bridge, to a Navajo Indian Reservation which is on the other side of the bridge

When the original bridge was built in 1929, bridge building regulations were different when compared to modern day regulations. The original bridge's maximum load capacity (22.5 tons) was not designed to support heavier modern day vehicles. Both the loads and widths of these modern day transportation vehicles are a lot larger than the trucks used in 1929. Engineers, in 1929, had no idea that the size of vehicles would increase so drastically, and 18 feet wide seemed more than sufficient for two cars to pass one another in opposite directions. If the engineers wanted to make the bridge any wider than 18 feet in 1929, it would be necessary to add a third arch to the bridge which would have cost more and seemed unnecessary at the time. In 1990, with the new traffic flow, a width of 18 feet was insufficient. Other factors that played a role in deciding to build a new Navajo bridge were the sharp turns on each side of the bridge that decreased visibility and the load limit of the old bridge was not sufficient enough. The posted load limit was 40 tons where the actual load limit should have been 22.5 tons.

This is an easy way to stretch your legs if traveling along 89-A. Ponder bridge engineering as you stroll across the bridge!

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2005-06-26 Randal_Schulhauser
  • Grand Canyon Use Area Boundaries - Dynamic Map
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.

Most recent Triplog Reviews
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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Wire Pass - Buckskin Gulch - Paria Canyon
This was an excellent short-notice trip that came about by way of a couple of cancellations to a trip a friend had been planning. I was happy to take up the slack and it was great that 9L was also able to come along.

We drove to Lees Ferry and spent the night at the campground before catching a shuttle to Wire Pass at dawn the next morning. Our shuttle ride was likely the most life-threatening part of our trip, and thankfully the only time the van actually drove off the road, it was under 25mph and didn't involve a cliff or other certain-death result. Oblivious to the vehicle, I selfishly decided not to mention the flat tire on the trailer-- which I noticed immediately and would certainly delay our start-- opting instead to get to the trailhead. Of course, after dragging it for 3 miles on a dirt road, the tire was shredded and I volunteered to put the spare on while some of the group got a head start on the hike. A BLM officer was at the TH checking permits and making sure everybody was prepared.

Day 1: Once we got started we headed down into Wire Pass. Just over a mile in you enter the first slot canyon and it involves climbing down a rock jam that apparently has gotten bigger in recent years. We had to take our packs off and hand them down to each other as we each climbed down the obstacle. Shortly thereafter, the canyon opened up again before reaching the confluence with Buckskin Canyon and the petroglyph panel on the right.

We were pleasantly surprised at how dry the canyon was and didn't reach our first water until about 5 miles in. There were a few short, ankle deep pools before it dried up again and we were hoping that would be the worst of it! Of course it wasn't and the deepest of the pools are scattered over the last mile or two before reaching the Middle Exit trail. From there however, the canyon provided for dry feet, which was a welcome change given the hypothermic temperature of the pools and the numb feet we all had regardless of footwear. Neoprene and thick wool were simply no match for the water temperature and there was a good 30-60 minutes of numb feet for all of us.

4.5 miles after the Middle Trail, we reached the infamous rock fall, but the rabbit hole was open and getting through it didn't even involve removing our packs. Another mile later and the canyon introduced a stream of clear spring water which ran all the way to the obvious camping area about half a mile later. Two groups had already set up camp so we didn't get the best site, but after a long, cold, wet day we were all happy to get camp set up and relax and eat. The cliff walls in this canyon make for impressive acoustics and there's no whisper or secret to be told that all the other camping groups in the vicinity wouldn't hear. Luckily I had downloaded the newest Justin Bieber album and was able to share it with everybody even on very low volume :y:

The first day totals were just under 14 miles in just under 8 hours.

Day 2: Saturday morning we took our time getting started and headed out of camp around 9:30 and it was a whopping 5 minutes before we arrived at the confluence of the Paria River. These two slot canyons coming together with 800 foot cliff walls above make one of the most magical places I've ever been.

From the confluence, we headed up the frigid Paria a bit more than half a mile to check out the pseudo-arch called Slide Rock Arch. It's really just a huge slab of rock that has fallen in the river, but water flows under it so it makes for a unique geologic formation. After a few minutes here we headed back to the confluence and then onward toward Lees Ferry. (The side trip to the arch and back too just under an hour).

This upper portion of the Paria is truly stunning, winding its way through narrow slots of red sandstone walls towering above you. I was generally awestruck for a few hours! 3 miles below the confluence we stopped for a snack break on a shelf with a great campsite and large cottonwood. 1.5 miles later, Ryan and I left our packs by the river and explored a defunct meander in the river. It was a bit under a mile to do the horseshoe loop and fascinating to think back to a time when this was the river's course.

Here the group split up a bit and it was another 7 miles before we reached our camp for the night, a bit under a mile beyond Judd Hollow. A group of three had arrived before me, with 3 more behind. There was a great sandy bench with cottonwood trees that provided a perfect campsite, and a fantastic artesian spring surrounded by quicksand just a hundred yards away. The 13.5 miles had taken nearly 8 hours to complete, and another night by the party lights was anticipated and highly enjoyed.

Day 3: After the previous day had taken longer than planned, we attempted a slightly earlier start on Sunday morning, and managed to head out of camp 8 minutes earlier than the day before. :roll: It was just 2 miles to Wrather Canyon where Ryan, 9L, LL and I had pre-decided we wanted to take a side trip up to see Wrather Arch while the others continued on downstream. Wrather is absolutely phenomenal! :DANCE: It's the largest arch in Arizona, the most remote arch in the US, and the largest arch not in Utah. At over 200 feet it's a true behemoth to stand under! And it sits at the end of a stunning and beautiful side canyon loaded with shade trees and a beautiful creek.

Highlight of the day completed, we headed back out the the Paria and an additional 8.5 miles downstream toward our planned camp at the start of the high water route, about 10 miles from Lees Ferry. Along the way we filtered water at the last known spring about 2.5 miles from our campsite, though we would learn there was also water at Bush Head Canyon which could have saved just under a mile of carrying the weight of extra water. This ended up being a 12 mile day and took about 8 hours (including Wrather side trip).

Day 4: Monday we actually managed to get up early for real, and hit the trail around 7. Ryan had hiked out the night before in order to get back to town for a commitment and 9L, Rachel and I took the speedy trip out while LL, Sreekar, and Sadhana opted for a less strenuous pace. The high route provides a bit over 2 miles of river-free hiking, though there's a sketchy side-slope traverse just under a mile into it. Once reaching the river again, there are a dozen or so required crossings. After 5 miles we reached the old ranch site where we took a snack break under the cottonwood trees and checked out the old corral. There's a spring here that was flowing, but none of us needed water so we didn't check it's quality. I don't see why it wouldn't be perfectly good to filter. One assumes that's why the ranch was built there to begin with.

The last 5 miles drag on quite a bit, but there are now well-established routes along the banks and river crossings become fewer until you make the final one 2 miles from the end. As we reached the Lonely Dell Ranch we saw two day hikers near the cemetery, and cruised the trail and road back to the car. Route Scout recorded exactly 10.00 miles on the day -- to the hundreth. We managed the exit in just a couple minutes over 4 hours, which left plenty of time for a leisurely drive home, with stops for ice cream, pizza and wings along the way!

All in all, a fantastic trip in one of nature's most majestic cathedrals. :)

I've taken some time to post a detailed GPS track that includes a bunch of points of interest. There are many more springs along the Paria than those I marked, and other places that are ok for camping, especially for a smaller group than ours. In Buckskin Gulch, there are no sources of water that aren't marked, and the only other camping spot would be on a rock shelf near the Middle Trail exit. Photos are geocoded based on time and speed traveled. In the narrowest parts of Buckskin they might be off by a few hundred yards, but the rest are quite accurate. (Through a glitch in the way I put it together photos and GPS track don't show up together automatically. This link works though: ... 1878)
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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Utah/Arizona Strip Trek - May/June 2014
Utah/Arizona Strip Trek – May/June 2014

Bryce Canyon NP (BRCA) & Zion (ZION) NP
Kodachrome Basin SP & Coral Pink Sands SP
Pipe Springs (PISP) NM & North Rim Grand Canyon (GRCA) NP

Utah/Arizona Strip Trek - Three National Parks, Two State Parks, One National Monument, Four Days, Three Nights, almost 1000 images, and 24 HAZ trails...

Prelude: Believe it or not but I’ve never been to Bryce Canyon or Zion. With 2 strikes already against me having previously attempted a trip in April (snowed out) and October (snowed out again), Lynn, the dogs and I made a late May attempt battling off strike three!

DAY 1 - Saturday May 31st
7.44 miles hiking and 390 AEG (39 floors) on FitBit
442 miles on F-150

With business visitors Friday evening, we couldn’t hit the road until early Saturday morning. Made good time and stopped for lunch at the Page AZ Burger King before crossing the Glen Canyon Dam into Utah :next: . Once in Utah, we passed some familiar sights in the Paria River Valley. Sad to hear the movie set from Clint Eastwood’s “The Outlaw - Josie Wales” was vandalized and burned to the ground :next: . Don’t know if I was one of the last to capture images before the set was burned to the ground :next: and

Eventually drove past Moqui Cave just north of Kanab UT :next: . I’ve always wondered if this was a structure incorporating original Anasazi ruins. A little online research says definitely not…

We turned off SR89 and onto Utah Scenic Highway 12 :next: . This was a treat for the first time (finally). Red Canyon gave us a hint of the “eye-candy” yet to come. Stopped at one of the pull-outs along SR12 and hiked the Red Canyon Loop :next: and a section of Golden Wall Trail :next: plus some connector trails (Red Canyon Tunnel Trail and Photographers Trail) :next: and ... orn-Trails

We eventually wandered into our “pet friendly” basecamp at the Best Western Ruby's Inn in Bryce Canyon City located just north of the park entrance :next: and ... hotos.html . This certainly was an international gathering of German, French, and Japanese tourist! After fixing a quick dinner at our basecamp hotel room, needed to stretch those legs around the Lake Loop :next: .

Sunday June 1st
10.71 miles and 780 AEG (78 floors) on FitBit
84 miles on F-150

Bryce Canyon NP :next: ... 14-web.pdf

Pets in Bryce Canyon NP :next:
"Pets are only permitted in campgrounds, parking lots, paved roads, paved viewpoint areas, and on the paved trail between Sunrise Point and Sunset Point"

We knew the limited hiking with dog options within the national parks before we left for Bryce and Zion. Undeterred, the Bryce “eye-candy” made up for any missed opportunities :next: . The Sunrise Point to Sunset Point Rim Trail :next: offered our first glimpse of the Amphitheater Region. Lynn and I then took turns minding the dogs up on top of the rim to give us each a chance to hike the Navajo and/or Queen’s Garden Loops. See :next: and .

Bryce Amphitheater Region map :next: ... er-web.pdf
Fairyland Point
Sunrise Point
Sunrise to Sunset Point paved connector trail is dog friendly Sunset Point Inspiration Point Bryce Point

Bryce Southern Scenic Drive viewpoint map :next: Swamp Canyon, Whiteman Bench, Natural Bridge, Agua Canyon, Ponderosa Canyon, Black Birch Canyon, Rainbow Point & Yovimpa Points

I had scouted up the Bristlecone Loop :next: that connects Rainbow Point and Yovimpa Points as a “photo op”. Unfortunately the trail was closed…

On the drive back from the southern reaches of Bryce Canyon, we stopped at Fairyland Point. Lynn and the dogs stayed at the rim top while I ventured down the Fairyland Loop Trail :next:

With the hour approaching 6pm and knowing we still had a couple of hours daylight left, we agreed to head the F-150 over to Kodachrome Basin SP :next: ... state-park located 7 miles off Highway 12 near Cannonville on Cottonwood Canyon Road :next: ... erview.png . I had previously viewed Kodachrome Basin from the south on an approach heading north up Cottonwood Canyon Road. On that occasion we had to abort our trip due to slick mud. This time I had an opportunity to view Kodachrome Basin from within the basin – nice! Pre-trip suggestions indicated Angels Palace or Shakespeare's Arch as highly recommended destinations :next: ... ochure.pdf and ... le-UT-5584 . Hiked Angel’s Palace Trail :next: followed by an aborted attempt of Shakespeare’s Arch :next: prior to a sundown picnic dinner at TH parking lot. Arrived back at Ruby's Inn basecamp to catch Hawks-Kings game and Game of Thrones...

Monday June 2nd
6.61 miles and 150 AEG (15 floors) on FitBit
245 miles on F-150

Zion NP :next:
1hr 44min drive per Google Maps from Ruby's Inn to Zion Lodge
Zion 2014 park map and guide :next: ... MG2014.pdf

Once again we knew the limited hiking with dog options within the national parks before we left for Bryce and Zion. Dogs are allowed on Pa'rus Trail :next:
Trail connects Canyon Junction and Zion Visitor Center. Prior to entering the 1.1 mile long Zion – Mt Carmel tunnel on SR9, it was recommended to us to make a stop at the Canyon Overlook Trail :next: ... -trail.htm and ... erlook.htm and Once near the Zion Visitor Center, I managed to grab the last available parking spot and we headed out along the Pa’rus trail as mid-morning temperatures hit the mid-80’s. With the scene reminding us too much of Sedona (the bad, not the good), we agreed to head up into the mountains and cooler climate along a back road I had scouted up as “Plan B”. Kolob Terrace Road was identified as an alternative since Zion Canyon can only be accessed by shuttle vehicles (no dogs allowed) :next: .
We had a pleasant lunch up at Lava Point :next: ... ground.htm and before checking out the West Rim TH :next: ... -trail.htm and Kolob Reservoir :next: ... 1154730183 and .

Tuesday June 3rd
8.25 miles and 500 AEG (50 floors) on FitBit
572 miles on F-150

“Getaway Home Day” via a natural curiosity, Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park :next: ... state-park and ... alpink.jpg and and . We discovered colonies of rare Tiger Beetles (only 600-3000 total population of beetles) while hiking the dunes :next: ... ochure.pdf and were also treated to a fascinating display of late spring flowers while hiking the Nature Trail :next: . South Fork Indian Canyon Pictographs - Located 4 miles northeast of the dunes in the Mosquith Mountain Wilderness Study Area (WSA) :next: . From Hancock Road – Yellow Jacket Road intersection, drive 3.5 miles passing the Ponderosa Campground until you reach the intersection of Hancock Road and the 4WD Sand Spring Road on the right. A 4WD vehicle allows travel within .5 mile of the pictographs. If your vehicle will not make it on the soft sandy roads, walk from the "T" in Hancock Road and Sand Dune Spring Road. It is 4 miles, one way, to the pictographs. Take Sand Springs Route to first intersection. Then a little less than 2 miles the trail ends and hiking trail to pictographs and petroglyphs begins. From the parking area, walk northeast to locate a path of use through the sand. Continue the gradual descent down the obvious trail. The trail soon becomes obvious as it continues east and then switches direction after a small drop down through the rocks. Continue descending and then traversing the hillside beneath the cliff band on hikers left. Shortly you will arrive at the (chain-link fence protected) South Fork Indian Canyon Pictographs. The distance from the parking lot to the pictographs is about .5 mile and the descent is about 150'. The pictographs sit at the back of a large alcove and pictures must be taken from behind the fence 30' away :next: and ... ndex32.htm . This area is a unique hidden gem – highly recommended (and no HAZer has visited this place before?)!

Pipe Springs National Monument :next: and .

North Rim of Grand Canyon :next: and ... im-Map.pdf

Prior to our visit we knew about limited options hiking with dogs at the Grand Canyon North Rim; “Dogs on the North Rim; are not allowed other than the Bridle Trail (Greenway) that connects the lodge with the North Kaibab Trail and the portion of the Arizona Trail that continues north from there to the park entrance.”

Bridle Trail on HAZ :next:
Bright Angel Point Trail on HAZ :next:
Transept Trail on HAZ :next:

Made a stop at the Marble Canyon Navajo Bridge and found “condor city” :next: before stopping in Flagstaff for a late dinner. Arrived back home just before midnight…

7.44 miles, 390 AEG Saturday
10.71 miles, 780 AEG Sunday
6.61 miles, 150 AEG Monday
8.25 miles, 500 AEG Tuesday

TOTAL = 33.01 miles, 1820 AEG, 24 HAZ trails

141 images on iPhone
310 images on Canon Rebel XT
438 images on Canon 6D
61 images on Canon 7D

TOTAL = 950 images on 4 cameras...

442 miles driving Saturday
84 miles driving Sunday
245 miles driving Monday
572 miles driving Tuesday

TOTAL = 1343 miles on F-150 (20.8 mpg). Assuming $3.80 per gallon average, that’s 64.5 gallons consumed for a trip cost of $245.35…

EDITORIAL COMMENT; Coffee in Utah sucks. Maybe that’s too rash since I didn't stop and try the Cafe Adobe/Expresso Rock Shop in Hatch UT... Took a Starbucks “fix” in Flagstaff to return me to equilibrium!

That NPS annual pass comes thru again for $25 entry into Bryce, Zion, Grand Canyon, plus $8 for Pipe Spring...

Aiming for Fall colour redux at Bryce Canyon Lodge the 1st week of October (looks like only Oct 4-6 or Oct 18-21 availability)? Cabin rentals are $212 per night plus multiple convenience fees and surcharges. Want to get some sunrise/sunset "golden hour" images...

PS - I see this trip tripped me over the 3K distance line for miles logged on HAZ :y:


Glen Canyon Dam :next:
Paria Movie Set :next:
Red Canyon Loop :next:
Golden Wall :next:
Ruby’s Inn Lake Loop :next:

Bryce Canyon NP Trails :next:
Sunrise Point to Sunset Point Rim Trail :next:
Navajo Loop :next:
Queen’s Garden Loop :next:
Bristlecone Loop :next:
Fairyland Loop Trail :next:
Angel’s Palace Trail :next:
Shakespeare Arch Trail :next:

Canyon Overlook Trail, Zion NP :next:
Pa’rus Trail :next:
Lava Point Overlook, Zion NP :next:
Kolob Reservoir Loop :next:

Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park :next:
South Fork Indian Canyon Pictographs :next:
Pipe Springs NP Trails :next:
Bridle Trail, Grand Canyon North Rim :next:
Bright Angel Point Trail :next:
Transept Trail, Grand Canyon North Rim :next:
Navajo Bridge, Marble Canyon :next:

Sent from my iPad

Concentrated around Bryce Canyon NP and Coral Pink Sand Dunes SP
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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On the way up to Utah...Haven't been this way in 12 years and haven't spent any time here in over 20 years...It's as beautiful as I remembered...Really need to get back there and spend some time and do some Fishing... :D

Got a late start waiting for the Dive Shop to open so I could get a Full Wetsuit...Needed to make time and get up to Utah before dark, so I could get checked in and Camp set up...Sooo, not much time for Photos, but this area is a must, so I stopped a few times and enjoyed...Love this area!!!

Lots of Shrubbery blooming in places along the way....
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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On our way to Utah we made a side trip to the Navajo Bridge. When I was a kid my dad would find the biggest rock he could carry and take it to the middle of the bridge (there was no Visitor Center or fan-fare back then) and he would throw it off the bridge. It sounded like a rifle shot, and the splash would reach both canyon walls.

Memories, plus a rare sighting of a California Condor made this a great start to our adventure in Utah. More photosets to come!
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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Somehow I forgot to post our mini-version of the faux R2R2R to finish off our trip at the North Rim. (Main purpose of the trip to the North Rim: supplying the real R2R2Rers).
After having lunch we pulled up to the lot to traverse the bridge over the Colorado. It's hard to believe this about the old bridge from Randal's hike desc:
When the old Navajo bridge was finished it was the highest steel-arch bridge in the country, extending 470 feet above the Colorado River.

There weren't too many out on the bridge this day since it was a Monday so we mainly had it to ourselves. The surrounding countryside is truly amazing in all of its splendor stretching from side to side. And to top it off, you have a fast flowing river below your feet. :DANCE:
This place is definitely worth the stop and I hear there's some great hiking in this general vicinity (Lee's Ferry).
We had a pleasant drive back via Flagstaff to Phx. I will post a few pics from that drive too.
Marble Canyon Overlook at Navajo Bridge
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Part of a 3-day weekend adventure to the Paria River Slot Canyons with my daughter Hannah and Mike Mattes.

Arrived late afternoon after a long day of hiking and a round-about trip from the Paria River Slot Canyons to Kanab UT via Hwy 89 and back along Hwy 89-A through Jacob Lake and Lee's Ferry.

Saw some large birds circling in the distance - California Condors? Couldn't make out a distinctive white "V" for positive identification.

Permit $$

Navajo Nation Reservation
Navajo Permits & Services

Map Drive
Paved - Car Okay

To hike
From Page, go south on Hwy 89 about 25 miles, then north on Alt. 89 for about 15 miles to Navajo Bridge.
$17 3L Hydration Bladder
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