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The Best Hikes in Kanab Creek Wilderness

30 Triplog Reviews in the Kanab Creek Wilderness
Most recent of 12 deeper Triplog Reviews
52 mi • 6,000 ft aeg
Deer Creek / Kanab Creek Loop
This hike has been on my list for a few years now. I hiked the Deer Creek Trail in October 2014 & I was in the Kanab Creek area in March 2018. I wanted to see the lower reaches of Kanab & learned about the route along the river that connects the two drainages. One can hike down Deer Creek & then link up to Kanab along 8+ miles of river. I thought this made for a great loop! I didn’t realize how difficult & demanding this route would be. The route along the river is known for “extreme exertion” and the route did not disappoint. The following is our day by day triplog from the adventure.

Day 1 – Bill Hall to the Deer Creek Patio
We would drive up the night before & car camped near Sowats Point. We had two vehicles & we left one at the Jump Up Nail Trailhead & then we all packed into one vehicle & drove to Monument Point & started hiking around 10am. You start by climbing a couple hundred feet to Monument Point. From there you drop & then traverse & make a healthy drop to the top of the Esplanade. We continued on & took a break by the junction of the Thunder River Trail. We noticed several potholes of water in the slick rock. The area had ran a couple days before & that made the drive in a muddy mess. We would continue & take another break at the top of the Redwall & then made the final push to the creek. We passed the “Throne Room” and noticed the waterfall shooting right out of the wall was dry. I would continue down while the others made stop. I arrived at the camp area & found two tents set up. They were a couple of guys from Albuquerque that were doing the Deer Creek Thunder River loop. We would set up our tents & then spent some time at the Deer Creek Patio as dusk set in. We would spend the rest of the evening enjoying dinner under our camp lights.

Day 2 – Deer Creek to Kanab Creek via the Colorado River Route
We started day 2 relatively easy as we packed up and headed out around 8am. We have a very hardy day planned with 8+ difficult miles along the river. I had some anxiety about this stretch. I’ve known about this route for years & knew it went but I didn’t know the details as well as I should. There were only a few triplogs & they commented on the difficulty & sun exposure. Plus they spent two days crossing the section. We’re going for one day.

The route started with our descent through the Deer Creek Patio & then the exposed narrows & then Deer Creek Falls along the Colorado River. That all went well & we took a variety of pics. The route was on my mind & I was eager to begin. We would start out along the river & pushed through some reeds & other brush. It was obvious this was going to be difficult. We found some semblance of a route but it was not consistent & disappeared at times. About a mile in we climbed high to avoid a possible cliff along the river. I started questioning if this section was a good idea. It was hot & I knew we’re in for a challenge. The others assured me they were good & this reduced my anxiety. We would climb up a ridge to the top of the Tapeats & then started a long stretch several hundred feet above the river. This section was cairned & relatively easy to follow. I focused in & pushed through with a quick stop at a spring along one of the drainages. I would continue as a set of boaters passed below. I was wishing we were lower & could thumb for a boat ride to Kanab Creek. We were too high up & that was not possible. I would eventually drop back to the river & took a break and waited for the others. We were about a third of the way across & I knew the rest of the route was right along the river. We were fully committed at this point.

The others joined me & we continued after a break. The next mile went well & we took another break at Fishtail Canyon. This is the spot most people camp. We were in good shape so Karl got some water from a pool a few minutes up canyon. After that it was a long slow grind along the river. Some sections made for relatively quick travel while others slowed us down. It was hard & slow travel but we made progress. We were delighted to see shade as the sun was low in the sky & was blocked by the south rim thousands of feet above. We kept at it as the day ticked away. I filtered water at some point & we took another break. Next up was a section that had large boulders & slowed progress. I had sweat dripping off my face but knew we were running out of daylight. I pushed ahead and arrived at the mouth of Kanab Creek right before dusk. I would canvas the area & found a decent campsite a few hundred yards down river. The others arrived around nightfall & I led them to our camp. We were finally done & couldn’t be happier! The hike pushed us to our limits & is the hardest segment of a backpacking trip I have ever done. I was glad it was over. We would settle in to dinner & a fairly early bed time.

Day 3 – Kanab Creek to Scotty’s Hollow
Our day 3 had a slower start but we knew we have another hard day ahead of us. The going up Kanab Creek is not easy & we wanted time to explore Whispering Falls & Scotty’s Hollow. We would walk out of camp around 9am and headed up Kanab Creek. The going went well as it was a relatively wide canyon with a good creek bed. We could tell the creek flashed a few days before due to all the mud. This was not an issue as we made our way up canyon. We arrived at the junction with Whispering Falls around 11:30am and took a short break & then started the hike up canyon. We arrived at the lower pool and Karl filtered water. We would climb the embankment & headed up stream for Whispering Falls. You arrive at a pool that appears to be a swimmer. There’s the option to wade through waist deep water on the right or hug the wall on the left. The left wall worked well and once across the pool you climb a narrow slot & then arrive at Whispering Falls. It’s a stunning grotto that feels indoors. Another group arrived at the same time as us & we all enjoyed it together. Some of them swam but that water was too cold for my desert blood. After we had our fill we returned to Kanab Creek & loaded up and continued north.

It was coming up on 1pm and we had a lot of miles ahead of us. We pretty much put our heads down and pushed onward. The other group mentioned a couple of swimmers but admitted there could be a bypass. I was hoping for a dry way around. We followed the canyon & weaved our way around rocks & other obstacles. The deepest water we encountered was knee deep but we spent a lot of time & energy working our way around the deep pools. We eventually hit an area I had a waypoint labeled “difficult boulders”. I looked ahead and saw the channel lined with rocks of varying sizes and some ranged up to the size of a small house. This section was a lot of fun as we searched for a dry route. With much effort we found a manageable route. It took a lot but we were getting through. We eventually found a deep pool that appeared to be surrounded by large boulders. I’m sure the other group swam here. I looked around and found a potential route on the left. I climbed up and found a wedge on the far left wall. I took a closer look and found it very awkward & slippery but I was able to scramble up. I noticed an easy way down the other side & we had our dry bypass! I yelled out to the others and we worked as a team to get everyone up. We continued on.

Our plan was to make it to Showerbath Spring & that’s after the side trip with Scotty’s Hollow. It was approaching 4pm & we only had about two hours of daylight. Plus we’re all tired from hard hiking. Chumley & I talked & agreed to start looking for campsites, preferably something near Scotty’s Hollow. We kept hiking & found a couple of possible sites along the way but we’re hoping for something right at the turnoff for the Hollow. We arrived at the mouth of the side canyon but there wasn’t a camping site there. We would backtrack five minutes to a nice site just above the creek. It was another long day & we had just enough time to set up camp before nightfall. It was another evening enjoying dinner & then on to bed around 9pm.

Day 4 – Scotty’s Hollow to Jump Up
We have another big day planned so we packed up relatively early and were hiking around 8:20am. One of the challenges of this hike was short days. Sunrise was 6:45 am & Sunset was around 5:30pm. Mornings were cold & we were slow to get started. After cutting our hike short the day before, we started with Scotty’s Hollow. This was my first time in this section but we had time constraints. We admired the waterfall at the start of the side canyon & then scrambled up the rabbit hole. Once above we headed up canyon which is wonderful! There is flowing water & fantastic geology. We wanted to go to the turnaround point roughly 1.5 miles up canyon but had to turn around short due to timing.

Once back to Kanab Creek we loaded up and continued heading up canyon. The going went well and we navigated more boulder problems and crossed in knee deep water. It took us just over an hour to get to Showerbath Spring and sure enough there was one final pool right below the spring. We were able to climb over a boulder & had to pass packs over. Once we were over it we took an extended break at the spring. I’ve been to Showerbath in March 2018 when it was my turnaround point. I knew we had relatively easy going for the rest of our hike. After our break we continued hiking & worked our way north. The going is easy as the rocks are smaller and easy to hike through. We took a break at the junction with Kanab Creek & Jump Up Canyon. From there we headed up Jump Up and enjoyed a few miles of narrows. This section is a real treat. We made a short side trip up Indian Hollow and then continued up and passed Kwagunt Hollow. The last few miles to our camp was a grind but we arrived with about an hour of daylight. We would camp just above the junction of Jump Up Canyon & Sowats Canyon. We would settle in for our final night in the canyon.

Day 5 – Jump Up to Sowats Trailhead
Our last day in the Grand Canyon. We had a moderate hike ahead of us but we have a long drive back to Phoenix. Once again we were up fairly early & on trail around 8:15am. We would follow Sowats Canyon to the Jump Up Nail Trail and follow that back to one of the vehicles on the rim. Sowats Canyon had a light flow in the creek & is a bit rocky but was fairly easy. We worked our way up canyon as the sun beamed overhead and the temps rose. We made a stop at Mountain Sheep Spring and admired the glyphs by the campsite. From there we hiked the last mile to our trail junction exit and we took a short break there. We would then hike up the first real trail we’ve seen in four days! It’s a solid climb to the Esplanade but was nice heading up. Once up top we traversed across the top and headed for the Cottonwood trees near the final junction that led back to the rim. We took another short break at the water just a bit downhill. From there it was the typical grind back to the rim. I was delighted to top out and that ended our trip. The others would top out and we then drove back to Monument Point and retrieved the other vehicle. From there it was a solid six hours back to Phoenix with a stop at NiMarcos in Flagstaff. Another trip comes to an end!

Final Thoughts
This was an extremely difficult hike. Especially along the river route & the section of Kanab Creek below Showerbath Spring. I honestly don’t recommend this hike.

Kanab Creek is an absolute joy to hike but takes a lot of time & effort. I wish we had another day or two for this trip.

We had good water at each of our campsites. The Colorado River was mostly clear despite rain a week before. The bottom of Kanab Creek was muddy but cleared as we ascended the canyon.

The short days was a blessing & a curse. Mornings were cold & we were slow to begin. And then it was dark by 6pm. Longer days would be nice but that means more sun exposure along the river route.

Thanks to Chumley & Karl for driving!
50 mi • 0 ft aeg
I just got back from a great six-day trip from the Jumpup Cabin Trailhead down to the Colorado River with detours to Scotty's Hollow and Whispering Falls. I had a number of questions before I departed about the difficulty of the old "ladder" section in Jumpup and the ascent of Scotty's Hollow, so I figured I should make a post on them now that I'm back.
The old ladder made of logs and rope that helped you descend from (or ascend to) Lower Jumpup Spring is gone and has been replaced with a rope and a precarious pile of rocks. I've seen trip logs with photos of it from Oct 2019 so it must have been removed in the last year. I was able to descend fairly easily by first lowering my pack off the cliff then lowering myself off the ledge with the rope. From a sitting position on the ledge my feet were only about 12 inches from the top of the rock pile (check out photo) so it was easy to lower myself. I didn't attempt to ascend but it looked like it would take a lot more effort to ascend as you would have to pull your full body weight up using the rope and somehow get your feet onto the narrow ledge. On my way back I took the detour up Sowats Canyon and across the Esplanade on the trail to avoid this part.

The ascent of Scotty's Hollow from Kanab is quite easy for the first 1.5 miles and is absolutely spectacular. There is a small waterfall that appears to block passage near the bottom of scotty's but there is an easy way up through a short cave between boulders on up-canyon right. After this it is smooth sailing up to a significant obstacle at 1.5 miles. There are two chest deep pools in this section that you need to wade through but they are in spring water which isn't that cold even in late November. I took a wet suit but would have been fine without it.

Also, Whispering Falls is a terrific side trip from Kanab Creek about halfway from Scotty's to the Colorado. If you are making the effort to get down to the river don't miss it!

I'll let my photoset do the rest of the speaking for me.

59 mi • 2,500 ft aeg
Hack Canyon - Kanab Creek - Jump Up Canyon
Great place to spend 4 days. John put the trip together and with a slight adjustment to the trailhead moving to Hack Canyon instead of Jumpup or Sowats we were ready to go. The trail in on Hack Canyon is easy to follow and very fast with little AEG. It’s 6 miles down to Kanab Creek which we headed downstream once at the confluence. Then about 9 miles down to the confluence of Jumpup and Kanab Creek camp spot. So it was 15 miles but pretty fast track which left us time to explore a bit once at camp.

At camp we already knew there was rain forecast for that night and it did rain but not too hard and by next morning it had stopped. That morning we day hiked up Jumpup Canyon exploring the narrows which were one of the highlights even though the creek was dry. We pass Sowats and then Kwagnut which shortly after that Jumpup stated to flow. The next several miles were another highlight of the trip with cascades, pools, and general awesomeness! Snow capped the rim above the canyon from the overnight snow just to add more flavor to an already fun day. Eventually in Jumpup we reached the ladder obstacle which is a bypass to get around the waterfall. We turned around here after checking out the ladder and headed back. On the way back we hit Indian Hollow but this turned out to be bit of disappointment since we only made it short ways up canyon before running into chock stone we couldn’t bypass. We then headed back to camp to call it a day. Settled into camp that night this time with no chance of rain and had relaxing night.

Next day we headeded down Kanab Creek towards Showerbath Spring. It's several miles and Kanab Creek starts to flow just mile or so upstream of the spring. Nice spring with hanging garden and we took a break taking quite a few pics. After that Lee and I continued another mile down to Scotty's Castle and Hollow. The hollow was really cool side hike with several waterfalls, a rabbit hole climb and many pools. We spent about an hour up and back exploring Scotty's Hollow and definietly worth the extra side trip. Then headed back to camp and packed up to move up Kanab Creek about 6 miles. John had picked out a nice spot with water and relaxing location to enjoy our last night.

Next morning it was just about 9 mile hike back out to the trailhead. We had a really cool fly over by F22 jets just before
[ youtube video ]
reaching the vehicles. Another great trip in the Canyon! Thanks for putting it together John!

59 mi • 2,500 ft aeg
Hack Canyon - Kanab Creek - Jump Up Canyon
The idea for this trip came onto the radar in fall 2017. We looked ahead to Lee’s Spring Break and decided it was the perfect timing to make it happen! Our original plan was to start the hike from Sowats Point but that is high elevation topping out at over 6,000 ft. Rain & snow were in the forecast so we decided to play it safe and start on the west side in Hack Canyon which sits at roughly 4,000 ft. This was a great option but features a long hike in of fifteen miles.
Camino Campana Trail
Camino Campana Trail

The three of us left Phoenix on Friday afternoon and made the drive to Kanab, UT where we stayed in a hotel. We woke on Saturday morning and made the drive in. The roads to Hack Canyon are in good condition overall. There are a few hairy spots in Hack Canyon but high clearance will do the trick.

March 17, 2018
We arrived at the Hack Canyon TH around 8:15am and got geared up for the hike in. There were three guys from Oregon who camped at the TH the night before. They were heading out and told us there was no water down canyon but they only went roughly six miles in. We expected this section to be dry but it still gave us some anxiety. If we can’t find water we’ll have to cut the trip short.

We started hiking around 8:30am and cruised down canyon. The first six miles are high speed as there are use trails on the benches above the creek. We took a short break at the junction with Kanab Creek and then continued hiking in. There was no water at all and our anxiety grew. We kept hiking and finally hit flowing water at roughly nine miles in. We made note of this spot and decided to camp here on night three. This will shorten our hike out on our exit day.

The next 5-6 miles were slow going and the flowing creek dried up within a mile or two. We found a few small pools as we neared the junction with Jump Up. The long hike was taking a toll on us and we talked about setting up camp roughly two miles from the junction but ultimately pushed on and we’re glad we did. There is a sweet campsite at the junction of Kanab Creek & Jump Up Canyon that rises 25 ft above the creek. We also found a small pool roughly a third of a mile away.

We set up camp and settled in for the evening. Rain was in the forecast and we were prepared. A light drizzle started falling around 6:30pm and sprinkled on and off. I spent the evening relaxing in my tent and fell asleep only to be woken around midnight by heavy wind and more rain. It was a bit unnerving but not too bad.

March 18, 2018
I started day two with checking my tent for water after the rain last night. There was some condensation on my tent and some water inside but not a big deal. We left camp and headed up Jump Up Canyon. There is a small chance of rain but we got lucky and it stayed dry.

The going up Jump Up Canyon is fairly easy as you walk up a dry creek bed. Some sections are loaded with annoying rocks but it’s not too bad. A few miles up we passed through a sweet sections of narrows that all of us enjoyed. We continued on and the canyon eventually opens up and water started flowing. We pass Kwagunt Canyon and kept heading north. Our goal was the Jump Up Ladder and I’m glad we went. The last mile leading to the ladder is spectacular! The canyon becomes steeper and features several breathtaking waterfalls.

Lee turned off to explore a cave while Karl and I continued another half mile to the ladder which turned out to be very cool. You arrive at a waterfall and have to turn to the right to spot the ladder 20ft above the canyon floor. We climbed up to it and the ladder looks precarious. Karl climbed up and briefly explored the area above. He eventually returned and then we started our return back down canyon where we took a short lunch break and met back up with Lee soon after.

The three of us then returned down canyon with a quick stop in Indian Hollow. We proceeded up this sweet canyon about fifteen minutes until we cliffed out at a 20ft waterfall. Getting up this would be extremely difficult and dangerous so we turned around and headed back to the camp.

We spent the rest of the afternoon exploring another short side canyon below camp and then settled in to our evening. The weather was dry and comfortable and we enjoyed dinner and turned in around 9pm.

March 19, 2018
On our third day we headed down Kanab Creek. The going was similar to Jump Up as we followed the dry creek bed and dodged large boulders. We made good time for the most part and ran into flowing water after 2-3 miles. From there it’s water all the way as we continued on for Showerbath Spring. We arrived at the spring and took a variety of pics and took a short break. Scotty’s Castle & Hollow were another mile down canyon but I was tired of all the rock hopping so I decided to head back. Lee and Karl continued down canyon. I took my time and returned to camp where I took a nap and broke down camp.

The guys returned to camp a couple of hours later and I had everything packed up and ready to go. The plan was to hike six miles back towards Hack Canyon and camp along the stretch of water we found on our hike in. This will greatly shorten the hike out on our last day. I hit the trail and made good time as I headed up canyon. Along the way came the first and only person we would see while backpacking. A solo backpacker was heading in and we had a short conversation. After that I continued on and made it to our camp location within an hour. Once there I set up camp and waited for the others to join me.

Lee & Karl arrived a bit later and we settled in for an evening around a campfire. All of us were beat after covering a lot of ground the past few days. We enjoyed dinner around the campfire and everyone was in bed around 9pm.

March 20, 2018
We hit the trail at 7am and started our hike out. We had roughly 8.5 miles to go and made quick work of the hike. We took a short break at the junction with Hack Canyon. From there it was one foot in front of the other as we cruised out. Along the way a couple of jet fighters flew overhead as they headed down canyon. We were back to the trailhead around 10am and packed up and then started the return to Phoenix. Another wonderful trip in the books! Thanks Karl for driving!
63 mi • 2,500 ft aeg
John, Karl and myself completed a four day foray into the Kanab Creek Wilderness and it was prettty spectacular. We began our modest trek via the far lengthier Hack Canyon approach, as winter weather had access via Sowats Point out of the question.

Day one was reserved for getting to our base camp at the junctions of Jumpup Canyon and Kanab Creek. It was a 15 mile day, but the lack of AEG and long stretches of nice trail along the benches of the creek made for quick hiking. Apart from what appeared to be a perennial stretch along Kanab Creek the hike in was very dry. In fact, there was no water a camp and we had to filter water from some left over pot holes a few tenths of a mile from camp. We knew rain was coming from the time we set up camp, so we ate our dinner a little sooner than usual. Around seven, the rain chased John and I to our tents for an early night, but Karl endured a little longer. It never really rained hard throughout the night, but there was a pretty steady light period of rain after midnight that lasted for a couple of hours, but nothing to make anything too uncomfortable.

Day two was a trip up to the Jumpup “obstacle” via Jump Canyon and Lower Jumpup Canyon. This route was a tad heavy on the boulder hopping, but big on the reward side. There was an awesome narrows secttion reminiscent of Buckskin along with some dramatic stretches with towering walls through Jumpup Canyon. Eventually the narrows relented to the much more open lower Jumpup Canyon, which was a real treat. There was flowing water, countless cascades and small waterfalls topped off by some excellent views of a snow dusted rim in the distance. I got an itch to explore a cave about a half a mile from the “obstacle,” so I let John and Karl explore that while I checked out the cave. The cave was a dud for prehistory, but offered some cool views. After meeting back up, we headed down to Indian Hollow. We held off on exploring Kwagunut and Sowats in order to save more time on what looked like a promising Indian Hollow. The beginning of Indian Hollow proved worthy with a short but spectacular little slot section, however, the excitement quickly wore off when we reached an impassable chockstone not too far in. A little disappointed, we turned around there and headed back to camp with modest plans to explore an unnamed canyon downstream of camp. The unnamed canyon proved to be a little bit of a dud, but nobody was complaining after the first rate hike up Jumpup earlier in the day.

Showerbath Spring and maybe a peak in Scotty’s Hollow was the goal of day three. Kanab Creek becomes a whole different world one you hit the stretch when it begins to flow above the surface and although it was a boukder hop, the hike to Showerbath was pleasant. Showerbath itself is also a pretty cool destination, complete with some nice deep swimming holes occupied by some rather large and unexpected fish. John went back to camp from Showerbath, while Karl and I headed further downstream to Scotty’s Hollow. This proved to be a worthy side trip, as we both left Scotty’s Hollow very impressed. A scenic little waterfall and grotto greets your entry into this special canyon and it just get better with each step further up canyon. We turned around at the “swimmer” as we were not planning on getting wet and we knew we still had a six mile camp relocation to complete once we got back to camp. The hike back up stream was boulders for days and a little redundant at times, but we still made decent time. Once we got back to camp, it was a quick breakdown and then back on the trail to set up camp six miles closer to the trailhead along a flowing stretch of Kanab Creek.

Day four was just a brisk 8.5 mile hike back to the trailhead. The recent snow had made some of the views in the distance nicer, but the last stretch to the Hack Canyon trailhead was certainly a little more mundane than the previous stretches from the days before.
4.04 mi • 1,748 ft aeg
This was the last hike with Jackie and the dogs before I headed down below the rim for my three day backpack. I was originally going to complete a three day backpack in this area with some colleagues from work, but wanted to get more quality time with the girlfriend and dogs over fall break, so settled on just an exploratory hike. I was told by a reputable source on HAZ that Kanab Creek from Jump Up may have been their most memorable canyon trip. I can certainly see why!

Like any good canyon trail, Jump up blows you away from the start with some tremendous views. One can immediately see the famous Kwagunt Hollow and numerous other finger like canyons that make their way to Kanab Creek and eventually the Colorado. It took less than five miles to determine, but this is an area I am already planning a return trip. So many option for exploring, so remote and so much to see in this unique wilderness area.

The trail down is rugged and a little steep, but generally in great shape. Jackie learned her first hard lesson of the canyon, in terms of what goes down, must come up, but she handled it fine and was very happy to get a real hike below the rim. Meanwhile, I left with my mind racing about future backpacks and trips. A return to this area is a certainty.
16.37 mi • 1,856 ft aeg
This was the first stop of an eight day foray on the north rim of the Grand Canyon that included: a trip to Toroweap, Lava Falls, Nampaweap Trumbell, Jump Up Trail, a three day backpack into Deer Creek and Thunder River and a quick finale in Marble Canyon. This little over night backpack turned out to be a tremendous start to our trip. I was very intrigued by the prehistory of the area and thought it was an ideal backpack for Jackie and the pups from the sounds of the terrain, so I decided to make this my introductory venture into the Kanab Creek Wilderness.

We drove up Friday night and slept at the trailhead for an early start Saturday. The trail is in great shape, the tread is heavy and it is pretty easy to follow. However, some may prefer pants or gaiters for the sporadic sections of over growth along the trail. The rock art is tough to miss and it really is some of the best I have seen and worthy of the praise it receives in the hike description. I was thankful I brought along Jackie because she pointed out about three times as many ancient drawings as me, which she attributed to me walking too fast. The area is a very dry. In fact, I was starting to really worry when the trough described in the description was in major disrepair and dry as a bone. We moved towards the spring location on my GPS and passed another empty and defunct trough before finally reaching the source, where a beautiful seep was filling two cement troughs with clear cool water. I thought, "phew we were not turning around for a 16 mile day hike with over night packs!"

After finding out we were not going to die of thirst, we did a lot of exploring in the area and were not disappointed. The amount of quality rock art out there is unprecedented and the figures depicted leave one mystified. In fact, I am probably more intrigued than ever now about the prehistoric people of the southwest. After a perfect night, with perfect conditions it was a quick hike out the next morning, a few more finds and on to Toroweap.
45 mi • 4,500 ft aeg
Kanab Creek to the CO River
Rugged non-technical canyoneering route into pristine lower Kanab Creek, where springs, streams and waterfalls abound. Started at the Sowats Point trailhead and dropped down the Jumpup-Nail trail for a couple of miles, then off-trail down beautiful Kwagunt Hollow, on down Jumpup Canyon through a section of narrow slots, then down winding Kanab Creek to the Colorado, with sidetrips up Scotty's Hollow and to Whispering Falls grotto. Didn't see another soul, a scrap of trash, a trampled campsite or a fire ring for 3 days - wonderful!

No need to worry about water sources on this one. Kwagunt had light flow and pools along much of its length. Jumpup and the first 3 miles in Kanab are dry, then water suddenly appears and grows to a lovely year-round creek that persists to the Colorado. Showerbath Spring is amazing.

FR #233 to the trailhead is deeply rutted - high clearance probably required, and it will be very muddy if wet.

More hike details can be found in Todd Martin's Grand Canyoneering book or on his website. Just don't follow his advice to turn around before reaching the Colorado - the walking gets easier the further you go, and the scenery is just as spectacular.
35 mi • 0 ft aeg
Spent 6 days in the area for a class in college. Started at Sowats Point and headed down into the canyon. The first night we spent on the esplanade right above Indian Hollow Canyon. The next day our route went straight down into Indian Hallow to Jumpup Canyon. There was some scrambling over some boulders and a swimming hole in Indian Hollow. We went down Jumpup Canyon to Kanab Creek where we spent the night on an island at the confluence of Jumpup and Kanab. From this point up to an area called the ledges the water is contaminated with old uranium tailings. Although half way between the confluence there is a water source at the bottom of crack baby canyon which can give you enough water to make it to the next water source. In between Crack Baby Canyon there is a sweet side hike up a side canyon that has petroglyphs and pictographs all over. After spending a night at the ledges we hiked cross country to the nail trail leading us to seasonal watersource. Highlights of this trail are one indian ruin which had shards here and there and petroglyphs near the ruin. This night we had slept near a drainage where we were visited by a tarantula and a few scorpions. Moving on the next day we headed into back towards Sowats Point which if I remember correctly we ended up walking through a few different canyons and left Jumpup Canyon for the last canyon of the trip and headed to a rock formation at the bottom of Sowats Point called the space station for our last night. Kanab Creek is a magical area to explore and is a mirror for self reflection.
0 mi • 0 ft aeg
Jumpup Backpack
Ray, Kathy and I enjoyed a 3+ day backpacking adventure into the vast and magnificent depths of the largest drainage from the north rim of the Grand Canyon — the Kanab Creek Wilderness via Jumpup TH and Canyon. From Jacob’s Lake we traveled backroads to Jumpup Cabin where we camped the first night. We took a hike down to Upper Jumpup Springs and viewed the petroglyphs on the canyon wall. The next morning we backpacked down Jumpup Canyon to the Ranger/Jumpup Nail trail junction. The wildflowers in the streambed were prolific. We did an exploratory hike past Lower Jumpup Spring to the Jumpoff Pouroff to view the wooden ladder which descends the side of the pouroff. We decided we would prefer to climb up the ladder on our return rather than down it. We returned to the Jumpup/Nail Trail and crossed the esplanade eastward to Sowats Canyon. The esplanade featured panoramic canyon views and multitudes of sego lilies. We explored up Sowats Canyon to discover a waterfall a mile up the right fork of the canyon. We also scrambled up a lower side drainage to Bitter Springs and a dry pouroff. We continued down Sowats to Mountain Sheep Spring where we spent the second night near a lush oasis. From Sowat Canyon we continued down into Jumpup Canyon, through the Jumpup Narrows to Kanab Creek and Showerbath Springs. We did side trips up Kwagunt Canyon and further down Kanab Creek to Scotty’s Hollow. We spend our third night at Showerbath Springs. We returned up Kanab Creek through the Jumpup Narrows past Kwagunt and Sowats to the Jumpup pour-off. We did the ladder climb past the pour-off to Jumpup Springs. Ray used a rope to haul our packs up the 20 foot canyon wall. We camped above Jumpup Springs and explored the surrounding cliffs for sunset views. The 4th morning we backpacked up Jumpup Canyon to the TH arriving mid-morning. We drove to Jumpup Point for a panoramic view and possible overnight. When rain started we decided to leave the point, traveled to Jacob’s Lake for a hearty lunch and continued to Lee’s Ferry Campground for our final night. We completed over 38 miles of wondrous adventure through colorful geology and stunning wildflowers. Elisabeth

Prolific displays of globemallows, Prince's Plume, Colorado Showy Four O'Clocks, Sacred Datura, Skyrocket, Cliffrose, Apache Plume, Evening Primrose, White Aster, Sunflower, Purple Sage, Sego Lilies, Strawberry Hedgehog, Phacelia, and many more.

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