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Wander The Maze of Canyonlands

ladies hike
 
We were ready for our 7 day backpacking trip into the Maze District of Canyonlands National Park. With 5 National Parks, various National Monuments, National Forests &  BLM land – Utah is truly a year-round hiking/biking/climbing/canyoneering/water & snow sporting kind of paradise. Several years ago I backpacked in the Grand Gulch of Utah where the Pueblo ruins, colors, sounds and silence of the desert surprised me, delighted me, and I and vowed to come back for more.

 
The Maze Map
 

The Plan

With the web at my fingertips and a few aging Utah guidebooks splayed over the floor, I landed on an idea that enticed me: backpacking in the Maze District of Canyonlands National Park. I had never been to Canyonlands, so that was a plus. It is also a more remote area than other parts of the park, which meant it was less frequented by others, and you could choose where you wanted to camp, which was another plus. It is also big enough that we could hike and explore for 5-6 days easily, extending my total vacation time to 9 days. So I came up with a map of possibilities and started to shop the idea around to a few friends. After settling on the who was coming, I laid out the trip plan a little more carefully, which looked like this:
 
Day 0:  Fly in SLC, drive to Green River, camp overnight

Day 1:  Drive from Green River > Goblin Valley SP (day hike Bell & Little Wild Horse Canyon & Goblin SP area)

Day 2:  Drive into GCRA, check in at HF Ranger Station. Drive to North Point, begin backpack:  

North Point Camp > Maze Overlook Camp (14.1 mi )

Day 3: Maze Camp> 1st Interior Maze Camp (3 mi) plus a day hike to Harvest Scene (~2 mi)

Day 4: 1st Interior Maze Camp > Shot/Water Canyon Camp (~9 mi)

Day 5: Shot/Water Camp > 1st Interior Maze Camp (9 mi)

Day 6: 1st Interior Maze Camp > North Point Camp (14.1 mi)

Day 7: Drive out, head home
 
 
slickrock

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4 Responses to Wander The Maze of Canyonlands

  1. jdrower June 15, 2015 at 9:20 am #

    The Maze has had a strong allure since reading The Monkey Wrench Gang umpteen years ago. Your trip report enhances that allure.

    Are there GPS coordinates for the trip you all did? Thank you!

    • jrlepage88 June 18, 2015 at 7:03 pm #

      Hi Jdrower – I don’t own the GPS we used, it was used only sporadically anyhow.

  2. Brian Felix December 9, 2016 at 10:27 am #

    Thanks for a great post! Just added this to my list of “must do’s”!

    • Julie December 13, 2016 at 11:23 am #

      Great to hear Brian! We did run into one other guy out there, a real regular Maze backpacker, and he suggested Ernie’s Country as another great place to wander (just southwest of the Maze).

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