March 2001: Coyote Buttes Trip (the Wave)

We left Provo on Friday at 1pm and drove south to Kanab, Utah right on the Utah/Arizona state line.  It rained all night long, but luckily it quit right before we left.  It had snowed just outside of town and there was snow all around as we drove out 35 miles east on hwy. 89.  The snow dissipated as we descended in elevation.  We took a dirt road south of the highway and had fun crossing a stream in thick mud (with enough speed even a low-riding Subaru wagon can plow through stuff like that)!  We arrived at the trailhead after 8 miles of dirt road and a few cows.  We signed in at the register and were on our way at 9am.  The area we were hiking in (Coyote Buttes North) is a special district of the Paria/Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness Area.  Only 10 people per day are allowed a permit to enter the area, and there is a long waiting period (we secured this date almost a year ago).  Because there are no trails or marked routes, we used Aaron's GPS to lead us in the general direction of the main feature we were there to see.  Most of the route was over sandstone, but some was over sand.  The rain had helped firm up the sandy portions which made hiking through them easier, plus it created little pools everywhere.  The scenery was spectacular.


The main destination of our trip was a formation known as The Wave.  It is a beautiful sandstone area eroded mostly by the wind through ancient sand dunes.  It is truly one of the prettiest natural creations we have ever seen.  It is definately the most unique.  Aaron took lots of pictures and Brittney videotaped.  We arrived before anyone else and had it all to ourselves for most of our time there.


On our way back to the car we took a side trip to Wire Pass.  Wire Pass is a narrow slot canyon leading to the Paria River.  That was pretty cool.


By 2pm and after approx. 10 miles of hiking (according to the GPS) we returned to the highway and continued east to Page, Arizona.  We visited the Glen Canyon Dam and Lake Powell.  The Glen Canyon Dam and Hoover Dam are almost exactly the same height; quite a bit higher than the Shasta Dam but much narrower.  We took a few pictures of Lake Powell and Wahweap Bay/Marina before heading back home.

Click HERE to return to our home page