chimney & spring canyon

Chimney & Spring Canyon

Spring Canyon stretches over 16 miles from the SE flank of Thousand Lakes Mountain in the Fishlake National Forest to the Fremont River in Capitol Reef National Park. The canyon is divided into Upper and Lower segments; the upper is accessed from Holt Draw Road west of the park, and the lower from Highway 24 within the park.

Though it takes considerable effort to reach Upper Spring Canyon from Holt Draw, Chimney Rock Canyon provides a short cut into the heart of Spring Canyon, from which point hikers will find moderate travel in either direction.

One great day-hike option leads to the spring in Upper Spring Canyon, 4.65 miles from the Chimney Rock Loop Trailhead. This route follows the north side of Chimney Rock Loop into Chimney Rock Canyon, which meets Spring Canyon at the Upper – Lower Canyon split

Chimney & Spring Canyon

You don’t need to tackle Capitol Reef’s hardest terrain to see some of its best scenery. This 10-mile, cathedral-like hallway combines easy canyon hiking and foolproof routefinding (there’s only one way to go) with life-list sights, like lush cottonwoods backdropped by massive sandstone amphitheaters. From the Chimney Rock trailhead, good trail leads into the deep cleft of Chimney Rock Canyon.

At mile 2.9 you intersect Spring Canyon and hang a right, leaving the maintained path behind. In a mile, the wash drops through a slot canyon. Explore it until an abrupt, sketchy downclimb; detour around on a trail along the left/ north rim of the narrows. The washbottom route continues past overhanging cliffs to a spring with good water at mile 6.5.


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