Hiking Grand Staircase-Escalante & the Glen Canyon Region
by Ron Adkison (Falcon Guides)
© Ron Adkison/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Awesome slickrock terrain! I hiked this trail last year, the 10.8 mile round trip. I made a couple of observations that might be of interest to anyone who plans to hike the Boulder Mail Trail to Death Hollow. Pay very close attention to the rock cairns and never hike beyond sight of your closest cairn. The surrounding terrain all looks the same and you could get lost very easily. Look back at the high mesa landmark…that’s where your car is parked. Don’t depend on your GPS to get you out. The high slickrock walls between you and your car will make your GPS directions undependable. When you reach Sand Creek go left and follow the trail a short distance and look for the cairns taking you up and out after crossing the creek. Pay close attention to where you crossed the creek because on your return trip there is no marker until you reach the slickrock. Pay attention to the one tree closest to the trail when descending down to Death Hollow…there are a lot of trees above the slickrock and you won’t be able to see the trail until you reach the top . If interested my YouTube link to this trail is:
Our group of 4 age 60+ backpackers hiked the Boulder Mail Trail its full length from Boulder to Escalante. Its a very interesting and scenic hike, with lots of steep slickrock in amazing patterns. It was recommended that we spend the night at the rim of Death Hollow, where there would be sunshine and warmth in the morning. However, we actually ended our first day at the bottom of Death Hollow, and we were glad we did. The second day from Death Hollow to Escalante is longer than we expected, and we would have run out of daylight if we had started the day on the east side of the Death Hollow Canyon. The way we did the hike, Day 1 was Boulder to bottom of Death Hollow, about 6 miles; Day 2 Death Hollow to Escalante about 10 miles. Part of Day 2 is through sand and then a long rocky downhill slough, so allow plenty of time to complete the second day. That said, it was a great hike. Just make sure your boots fit perfectly and are laced tight, because you'll be hiking steep downhill much of the time. Two of our four experienced hikers still ended up with blisters and crunched big toes!
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