Grotto Canyon

Death Valley, California

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This out-and-back canyon hike winds through water-carved grottos and narrows of polished rock to a high, dry fall. With careful driving a passenger vehicle can negotiate the road to the wash on the Grotto Canyon hike. The soft gravel of the wash for the mile to the canyon entrance requires high clearance and four-wheel drive. No signs or markers punctuate the end of the road, but severe washouts end vehicle access just before the first dry fall. Conditions in this canyon change with each flood. At times the gravel is deep and the dry falls are easy to scale, but often floods have scoured the gravel away, making exploring more of a challenge. Like the other Tucki Mountain canyons, Grotto is a very broad canyon, up to 200 yards wide in many areas. Deeply eroded canyon walls stand like medieval castle ramparts, with short serpentine pathways in their lower reaches. The narrows at 1.8 miles bring welcome shade after the journey up the graveled canyon bottom.
Hiking Death Valley National Park

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Hiking Death Valley National Park

by Bill and Polly Cunningham (Falcon Guides)

This out-and-back canyon hike winds through water-carved grottos and narrows of polished rock to a high, dry fall.

With careful driving a passenger vehicle can negotiate the road to the wash on the Grotto Canyon hike. The soft gravel of the wash for the mile to the canyon entrance requires high clearance and four-wheel drive. No signs or markers punctuate the end of the road, but severe washouts end vehicle access just before the first dry fall. Conditions in this canyon change with each flood. At times the gravel is deep and the dry falls are easy to scale, but often floods have scoured the gravel away, making exploring more of a challenge.

Like the other Tucki Mountain canyons, Grotto is a very broad canyon, up to 200 yards wide in many areas. Deeply eroded canyon walls stand like medieval castle ramparts, with short serpentine pathways in their lower reaches. The narrows at 1.8 miles bring welcome shade after the journey up the graveled canyon bottom.

© 2017 Bill and Polly Cunningham/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Death Valley
Distance: 4
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 2-3 hours
Season: Best season: October through April
Local Contacts: Furnace Creek Visitor Center; (760) 786-3200; www.nps.gov/deva
Local Maps: NPS Death Valley Visitors Map; Trails Illustrated Death Valley National Park Map; USGS Grotto Canyon-CA
Driving Directions: Directions to Grotto Canyon

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Apr 2018