by Bill Schneider Edited by Ann Seifert (Falcon Guides)
A little-known box canyon on Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service land suitable for a long day hike or two- to four-day backpacking trip, using the extra time to explore the numerous side canyons. Although Arch Canyon receives little use compared with the better-known Grand Gulch and Dark Canyon Primitive Areas, it offers outstanding scenery and numerous ruins; also, it is comparatively easy to get to by car.
The high, forested massif of Abajo Peak and the rest of the Blue Mountains are drained by numerous canyons, many of which are not only fascinating to explore but also difficult to reach by road. For this reason, the area offers more solitude than other, better-known parts of Utah’s redrock country. In addition, spring snowmelt in the mountains above ensures a steady flow of water in many canyons, making desert backpacking less of a chore than usual. The Ancestral Puebloan Indians found the area ideal, and most south-facing alcoves contain evidence of their culture, from petroglyphs and three-bushel granaries to multilevel apartments and kivas.
© Bill Schneider Edited by Ann Seifert/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.