Capitol Reef National Park

Hamburger Rocks
Gorp.com

A hike through Halls Creek Canyon to Hamburger Rocks can be done as a long day hike or an overnight backpacking trip. The Hamburger Rocks are small, dark-colored (Carmel Formation) hoodoos with hamburger-like shapes. The rocks are accentuated by the white-colored Navajo sandstone they are perched on. Total round-trip distance is 9 miles form the Halls Creek Overlook or 12 miles from The Post. The route is unmarked and extremely hot in the summer; carry water and a map. Backcountry permits, available at the Visitor Center, are required for overnight trips.

Halls Creek Overlook provides the best access to Hamburger Rocks. From this spectacular viewpoint, a steep trail descends 800 feet into Halls Creek Canyon. The remaining 3 miles of the route is unmarked but not difficult to follow; walk up the canyon following the wash bottom. In approximately 2 miles, Hamburger Rocks will be visible low on the Waterpocket Fold on the west (left) side of Halls Creek. Stay in the wash until the rocks are right above you, then hike up the Fold (less than 1/4 mile) to their location. On USGS topographic maps, Hamburger Rocks are located just south of the Muley Tanks, which are marked. Return to your vehicle via the same route for a total round-trip of 9 miles.

From The Post, follow Halls Creek Canyon south. You will pass the narrow cut into Lower Muley Twist Canyon after 5 miles. Hamburger Rocks are approximately 1 mile beyond this point. A sign indicated the Muley Tanks on the west (right) edge of the canyon at the base of the Fold. Hamburger Rocks are located low on the Fold just beyond (south of) this point. Return via the same route for a total round-trip of 12 miles.

On either route, sections of Halls Creek Canyon and its meanders can be bypassed by following an old jeep road.

Trailheads: Halls Overlook is located on a spur road 3 miles west of the Notom-Bullfrog Road. The Notom-Bullfrog Road is hard-packed dirt and is usually passable to passenger cars. The spur road to Halls Overlook is a rough dirt road passable to high clearance two-wheel-drive vehicles. Total distance from Utah Hwy 24 to the Halls Overlook Trailhead is 57.6 miles. The Post is located at the end of a short spur road 3 miles south of the Notom-Bullfrog and Burr Trail Road junction. Total distance from Utah 24 to The Post Trailhead is approximately 37 miles.

Maps: USGS 7.5 Minute Series: The Post and Deer Point or Earth Walk Press, Capitol Reef National Park. Available from the CRNHA at the park Visitor Center.

Best Seasons to Hike: Spring and Fall.

Mileages (Approximate):
Halls Overlook to bottom of canyon via Halls Overlook Trail - 1.2
Hamburger Rocks via Halls Creek Canyon - 3
Total round-trip mileage via Halls Overlook route - 9
The Post to Lower Muley Twist Canyon via Halls Creek Canyon - 5
Hamburger Rocks from Lower Muley Twist Canyon via Halls Creek Canyon - 1
Total round trip mileage via The Post route - 12


Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 26 May 2011
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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