Description: The route begins as a broad shallow canyon. After 0.5 mile the route enters the Navajo Sandstone and becomes a narrow, sculpted rock passage. The canyon becomes deeper and broader as it continues. Hiking is mostly level in the sandy/gravelly wash bottom. North-facing slopes feature Ponderosa pine and Douglas fir.
Type of Trip: Best as a day hike. Could be combined with Willis Creek for a long loop day hike or with other routes for a backpacking trip. This is a good route for horses.
Mileage: 6.9 miles one way from the trail head to the confluence with the Paria River. Along the way, you will pass by the mouths of Willis Creek, 1.6 miles from the trail head, and Bull Valley Gorge, 5.4 miles from the trail head.
Trailhead Location: Drive 2.9 miles south of Cannonville on the paved Cottonwood Road (400). Turn right on to the Skutumpah Road (500). Continue west on the Skutumpah Road for 2.8 miles. The road crosses the top of an earthen dam, then over a concrete spillway with a small flow of water in it. Approximately 200 yards beyond the spillway there is a flat area to park on the right side of the road. Walk down the old road (closed to vehicles) into the canyon and continue downstream.
Water Availability/Hiking in Water: This is primarily a day hike. The first half mile and last half mile of the canyon usually has a small flow of water. Willis Creek has a perennial flow, but you may have to hike up the canyon a mile or more to find surface flow. Bull Valley Gorge is dry.
Obstacles/Technical Features: None
Safety Concerns: Hikers must be cautious if hiking here during flash flood season, especially in the narrows. This is primarily a dry hike, so hikers must carry adequate amounts of water.
Maps: USGS 7.5 minute quad: Bull Valley Gorge