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The trek through Halls Creek is 22 miles round trip with three of those miles leading through steep-walled narrows. An permit is required for an overnight trip through this canyon.

This hike leads through the wash of Halls Creek to the narrows of the canyon. From the narrows a path loops through Hall Divide, which brings hikers back to the creek above the narrows. The total mileage for this hike is approximately 22 miles. It is a moderately strenuous hike with some wading or possibly swimming required through the narrows. Round trip elevation gain for this trek is close to 1,200 feet. A permit for any overnight use of this canyon is required and can be obtained at the Visitor Center.

The following description was obtained from the National Park Service. Halls Creek Overlook provides the best access to Halls Narrows. From this
spectacular viewpoint, a steep switchbacking trail descends 800 feet to the
bed of Halls Creek. The remainder of the route is unmarked but not difficult
to follow; it is simply a matter of walking down-canyon to the Narrows.

The historic Halls Crossing wagon trail, developed in the 1880s for access
to Halls Crossing on the Colorado River, followed this same route. Although the crossing was only active for a few years, the road continued to be used until recent years by stockmen and it is still visible in many places today. Cutting across many of the wide meanders in the wash, it provides a convenient path for much of the route to Halls Narrows.

Though the Narrows may be your destination, the walk down Halls Creek is itself very spectacular, with the high cliffs of Halls Mesa to the east and
the deeply eroded sandstone slopes of the Waterpocket Fold to the west.
Many intriguing side canyons enter Halls Creek from the Fold and beckon to the hiker with sufficient time for exploration. For anyone interested in
geology, there is a wealth of information on display here. Rocks of the
Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods are exposed along the route and the Waterpocket Fold provides a textbook example of a monocline, unobscured by vegetation and soil.

Although the Narrows themselves are almost always wet, water can be a scarce commodity along much of the rest of the route. If there has been any recent rain, waterpockets can usually be found in the short, steep side canyons in the Fold. The Fountain Tanks will hold some water in all but the driest times. Don't count on finding water before the Narrows - carry plenty with you. Be sure to purify any water you drink.

At the Narrows, Halls Creek abandons its logical path down the wide gulch
separating the Fold and Halls Mesa and cuts stubbornly into the thick Navajo sandstone of the Fold. The change is sudden and dramatic. For the next three
miles, the creek meanders tortuously through a deep, narrow canyon.

The walk through the Narrows always requires some wading, but the depth of
the pools can vary greatly from year to year and from season to season.
Flash floods periodically scour out the sediment, sometimes leaving pools
that require deep wading or possibly even a short swim. If you wear a
backpack through the Narrows, you may have to carry it over your head in
some of the deeper pools.

You can bypass the Narrows on the return trip by walking over Hall Divide.
This route cuts 1.5 miles off the return to the start of the Narrows. The
rest of the return trip simply retraces the route back to Halls Overlook.

Halls Narrows is a beautiful and unspoiled place. Use your best backcountry
etiquette; pack out your trash, bury human waste, build no fires. Leave as
little trace of your passing as possible.

Directions: From Highway 24, Drive southward on Notom-Bullfrog Road to the Bullfrog Marina Access. Turn right, south, and drive one mile before reaching the Halls Overlook spur road. Turn right on to this road and travel three miles to the overlook. The spur road is suitable for high-clearance two-wheel drive vehicles in good weather.

Elevation: 5,200 feet

Usage: Heavy

Difficulty: Moderate

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Capitol Reef National Park, Utah

Visitor Information

The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

Review by Wildernet Copyright © 2010 all rights reserved.