Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurricane

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walt_

 
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Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurricane

by walt_ » Sun Mar 25, 2018 2:31 pm

Hello,

My brother and I are planning a week in Escalante-Grand Staircase in early May. Coyote Gulch has me a little concerned. We're wanting to do it as a day hike without ascending or descending the arch--but also want to see the section from Jacob Hamblin Arch to the Escalante. We're thinking about entering at Crack in the Wall and exiting Hurricane Wash. We'd leave a car at the Hurricane Wash trailhead and hire a shuttle to take us to Fortymile Ridge trailhead.

Just for background: We live in Colorado, hiking 14ers and other trails here with 3K+ elevation gain in a day. We've hiked all the national parks in Utah (including Subway, Observation Point, far up the Narrows in as high/fast water as they allow, Peekaboo in the Needles, Murphy Trail loop in Island in the Sky). Also in Glacier NP: Highline with the steep offshoot to the Grinnell overlook, the Grinnell Glacier trail, combined Iceberg Lake and Ptarmigan Tunnel for about 16 miles with some decent elevation gain. Our trips are usually hiking day after day for 6 or 7 days.

Any advice on that? Think that's doable in day given our experience? There's been mostly negative reactions to this idea from people I've asked but would like to know from anyone who's actually done this route, even in reverse. We're just not wanting to backpack it; no experience backpacking. Thanks so much. Really would appreciate your insight.

All the best,
Walt

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Scott

 
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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by Scott » Sun Mar 25, 2018 6:54 pm

It's doable if you are in great shape and move very fast, but not recommended. 2-3 days is much better. If you do it in one day you are going to be missing a lot (hidden ruins, arches, enjoying the scenery, etc.).

For comparison, I'd say it is about like hiking the Subway almost but not quite twice in one day.

Also, it seems silly to hire a car shuttle for that route. There's an alternate route out of Hurricane that requires only walking the road about a mile. A shuttle to that area sounds really expensive since it is a really long way from the nearest town.

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walt_

 
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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by walt_ » Sun Mar 25, 2018 10:29 pm

Hi Scott,

Thanks so much for the reply to this. Really appreciate your insight. We're really wanting to do this as a day hike rather than a backpacking trip--even though we won't see everything. Subway is 9 miles round trip (bottom up). My understanding is from Fortymile Ridge trailhead thru to Hurricane Wash trailhead it's about 15 miles or so. Going that route, from what I gather, would involve elevation loss (down the dune below the crack) but not a whole lot of gain. Is that right? Subway has that descent and ascent, which isn't too bad, but takes some time/energy.

I'd definitely be interested to know more about the alternate route out of Hurricane you mention and how many miles that would save versus hiking to the Hurricane Wash trailhead. Is there a name for it? Saw something where people cut cross country and aim for Chimney Rock. The shuttle is $300, which is pretty hefty for sure. If we were to opt for that route, would we park at the water tank, walk cross country to the crack and then out the shortcut back to the water tank? Know the total miles for that? Thanks again!

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by stinkysox77 » Thu Apr 05, 2018 2:57 pm

Paying $300 to see coyote gulch doesn't seem worth it. The one time I've been there I hiked in Hurricane wash and didn't go too far beyond the natural bridge. I got a late start on the day and it was still a very easy day of backpacking. If you were to car camp somewhere along the hole in the rock road you could probably very easily do an out and back dayhike from Hurricane Wash to the river and back and then car camp somewhere along the road again that night. That's my recommendation if you aren't willing to backpack it one night in the canyon.

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Scott

 
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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by Scott » Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:31 pm

If you were to car camp somewhere along the hole in the rock road you could probably very easily do an out and back dayhike from Hurricane Wash to the river and back and then car camp somewhere along the road again that night.


Unless you are a marathoner, I'd have to disagree. It's actually a long way to the river and back for a day hike. It's 25 miles round trip and that's without stopping to check anything out (the ruins, arches, etc.). Also, if you only went to Coyote Natural Bridge, you missed the best part of the canyon and you were much less than half way down.

I'd definitely be interested to know more about the alternate route out of Hurricane you mention and how many miles that would save versus hiking to the Hurricane Wash trailhead.


I am out of town so don't have the map, but it's in the following guidebook:

https://www.amazon.com/Canyoneering-Loo ... 0874805457

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by stinkysox77 » Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:55 pm

I'm curious as to what you consider the best part of the canyon. I consider Hamblin Arch and the natural bridge to be the highlights.

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by Scott » Thu Apr 05, 2018 6:30 pm

I'm curious as to what you consider the best part of the canyon. I consider Hamblin Arch and the natural bridge to be the highlights.


Do the whole canyon and you will know. :wink:

Anyway, unless you are after the x slots in the vicinity of Sleepy Hollow, the best part of Coyote Gulch is from Jacob Hamblin to near the river. You saw a tiny bit of the best part, but missed a lot.

I should have said you missed most of the best part of the canyon since you did see a little bit of it

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by stinkysox77 » Thu Apr 05, 2018 7:10 pm

Maybe that's why I wasn't overly impressed. Thought it was a little too crowded also.

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by walt_ » Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:02 am

Thanks again, Scott. Really appreciate your advice. Also appreciate your input, stinkysox77.

All the best,
Walt

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by walt_ » Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:27 am

Just wanted to report back on our experience. We did park at Hurricane Wash and hire a shuttle to drop us off at Fortymile Ridge. We had no problem at all hiking the length of the canyon with plenty of daylight to spare (did not go to the river, though). Did the side trip to the Black Lagoon, which was definitely worth it. If I were to do it over again, I'd enter through Crack in the Wall, hike to the Jacob Hamblin Arch and hike back rather than exit via Hurricane. Hurricane sure would've been fine to skip.

It really is an amazing place. Was definitely an adventure. I'd go back and do an out-and-back to the river via Crack in the Wall for sure. Have a great summer.

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Re: Route Help: Coyote Gulch as a day hike, Crack to Hurrica

by Scott » Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:22 pm

If I were to do it over again, I'd enter through Crack in the Wall, hike to the Jacob Hamblin Arch and hike back rather than exit via Hurricane.


It would be shorter just to use the shortcut out of Hurricane to return. This would be a lot shorter and easier than backtracking all the way to Crack in the Wall and no car shuttle is needed. The black line is the road and the red line is the walking route. Jacob Hamblin Arch is circled. The walking is easy and fast on the rim-land. This is still faster that doing the car shuttle out of Hurricane as well.

coyote.JPG
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