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Water Holes Canyon - West of US 89 (Downstream)
Slot Canyon Regions
North Lake Powell
San Rafael Swell
Zion National Park
|Page > Water Holes Canyon > West of US 89
Photographs of lower and middle Water Holes Canyon.
Once on the canyon floor at this point, walking upstream soon leads to an enclosed, spooky section of narrows that has good rock formations but which is quite hard to explore, especially after a recent flood as there are pools several feet deep, extensive patches of soft mud and some steepish rock surfaces to climb. After only 10 minutes one arrives at the foot of the dryfall mentioned above and turning back is the only option.
Much more of the canyon is accessible downstream of the alternative entrance point. Short slot-like passages are separated by longer open sections, as the canyon deepens steadily. After another half mile, a second curving drop of 25 feet blocks the way forward, and as there are other larger falls between here and the Colorado River, and no more narrows, this is a sensible point to turn back for those without ropes.
A walk along the desert plateau above not only gives a good overview of the canyon and the dramatic junction with the main river, where the muddy streambed twists through a jumble of large eroded domes and meets with the clear waters of the Colorado, but also passes a variety of erosional rock features, occasional clear rainwater pools and various species of cacti. It takes about 80 minutes to walk from US 89 across exposed rock to the edge of Glen Canyon, which at the junction with Water Holes makes a graceful sweep through 180° and turns northwest. Just around the next bend, the cliffs open out quite abruptly at Lees Ferry.
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