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Yellow Rock

Yellow Rock

Yellow Rock

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Utah, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 37.25910°N / 111.92344°W

Object Title: Yellow Rock

Activities: Hiking, Mountaineering, Trad Climbing, Toprope, Bouldering, Scrambling

Season: Spring, Fall

Elevation: 5524 ft / 1684 m


Page By: Scott

Created/Edited: Nov 5, 2008 / Dec 4, 2012

Object ID: 461045

Hits: 8271 

Page Score: 84.82%  - 19 Votes 

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Simply put, Yellow Rock is a more of a hill rather than a true mountain, but what a beautiful summit it is. Of all the summits in the world I have climbed, Yellow Rock ranks as the most colorful of all. Unfortunately, our photos don’t do it justice.

Yellow Rock is located in the Escalante-Grand Staircase National Monument which was established in 1996. It used to be a seldom visited summit, but its fame is becoming more widespread so there a few hikers and climbers out and about. The entire region is a fantastic wonderland of colors, desert, forest, canyons and peaks.

Looking north from the summit
Looking north from the summit of Yellow Rock.

Getting There

You can access the Yellow Rock trailhead from the north or the south, but either route involves the Cottonwood Wash Road. In dry conditions, roads are good for all vehicles.

From the north, drive Highway 12 from Cannonville (between Bryce Canyon National Park and Escalante) south then east along the paved road to Kodachrome Basin State Park. After 7.3 miles, there is a junction with the left fork heading for Kodachrome Basin. Instead of turning north to the state park, continue along the Cottonwood Wash Road (mostly unpaved but in good condition). Drive another 24.6 miles (use a map) to the trailhead at the mouth of Hackberry Canyon.

From the south, drive Highway 89 between Kanab and Page to the Cottonwood Wash Road between mile markers 17 and 18. Follow the Cottonwood Wash Road for 14.6 miles to the trailhead at the mouth of Hackberry Canyon.

Yellow Rock
Yellow Rock from not far from the trailhead.

Routes Overview

There are several routes available, but the East Slopes Route is best. We took a route farther north going up, but it was steep loose and scary. The East Slopes route is quite easy and only a rough class 2.

Pink and Yellow
Much of the East Slopes Route is along colorful slickrock.

Red Tape

Tread lightly. For a Nation Monument, Grand Staircase-Escalante is rather hassle free, but see the information below:

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

Hackberry Canyon from Yellow Rock
There are red rocks, but not so much red tape.


There are good campsites at the trailhead and in several locations nearby.

When to Go

Mid March through May and mid September through mid-November are best. Winters are usually sunny and this can be a good time to climb, but the Cottonwood Wash Road can be slick and muddy after a fresh snow (or rain). Summers are hot, but early mornings can be pleasant.

Summit area of Yellow Rock in April.

Mountain Conditions


Below is the National Weather Service Climate Summary of Kodachrome Basin, not far north of Yellow Rock. The data is from 1979-2007. Temperatures should be fairly similar, but perhaps a bit warmer at Yellow Rock.



MOLLIES NIPPLE photoLooking north from the summitSummit of Yellow RockCastle RockSummit of Yellow RockMiddle Hackberry CanyonHackberry Canyon from Yellow Rock
Yellow RockYellow RockPink and YellowNear Yellow RockThe Crew on the summit of Yellow RockYellow RockYellow Rock
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