Spooky Gulch and Peek-a-Boo Canyon are easily the best beginner slot canyons in Utah. Both are easily accessible and rugged enough to be challenging, yet don’t require any technical canyoneering equipment or skills. It also doesn’t hurt that they are some of the most narrow and photogenic slot canyons in the area, with Spooky being especially claustrophobic. These unique formations offer a true adventure and this guide will cover everything you need to confidently visit this incredible area.
What is a slot canyon?
Slot canyons are narrow, water carved canyons, often measuring more than ten times deeper than they are wide. They are formed when heavy, monsoon-rains flow into an outcrop, which over thousands of years will carve out a narrow drainage basin. Although there are slot canyons around the world, the vast majority of them are found in the Southwestern United States which has ideal conditions for their creation.
Peekaboo And Spooky Slot Canyon Maple
Getting There & Hiking Route
Start by ascending Peek-A-Boo, a gradually inclining slot canyon. Once the walls of the canyon shallow out, turn right; hike cross-country to Spooky Gulch, then descend Spooky which runs parallel. #grandstaircaseescalantehikes #peekaboogulch #slotcanyon The Peek-a-boo/Spooky Gulch slot canyon loop trail used to be one of those little-known treasures hi. Dry Fork contains the four slot canyons of Peekaboo, Spooky, Brimstone and Dry Fork Narrows. These canyons can be combined in many fashions to create an adventure lasting from several hours to a full day of exploring. The slots are accessible to most hikers and photographers with only a small amount of scrambling required.
Both Spooky and Peek-a-Boo are located an hours drive south of Escalante, Utah, along Hole-In-The-Rock Road. A two-wheel drive car will suitable getting here, but do know that it is heavily washboarded and has several sandy sections. Even thought probably won’t be going more than 20 mph for most of the way.
Once at the trailhead, it’s an easy, 45 minute hike down to the canyons. The trail is well marked and you shouldn’t have any trouble finding the way. It doesn’t matter which slot canyon you choose first, although do note that some people find coming out of Peek-a-boo a bit challenging due to the steep entryway. From the top of both Spooky and Peek-a-boo, there isn’t a well marked trail so it’s best to bring a GPS or have the satellite maps open on your phone. I have included hiking and driving directions in a custom map you can access by clicking the picture below.
Need To Know
Spooky: This slot canyon in particular is extremely narrow with some sections only ten inches wide. Extremely buff or “fluffy” hikers will have trouble squeezing through.
Peek-A-Boo: The entrance to Peek-A-Boo slot canyon is a steep, 15 foot climb over slick sandstone without any good places to grip. If you’re not confident, bring some rope and a friend. Quatro casino 100 free slots.
Time: The hike out from the parking lot will take around 45 minutes one way and the full loop should take around 2-3 hours. Coupled with the long drive from Kanab, this is a full day outing.
Camping: If you’re planning to hike in the summer, arriving the night before and camping will give you a head start to beat the scorching southwestern heat. Overnight permits are free and you simply need to fill one out at the trailhead.
Dangers: Because slot canyons are often drainage basins for large areas, even light rain can flood a slot canyon all the way to the top. Do not hike if there is any forecasted rain in the area. If it has rained in the past several days, be aware that you could run into quicksand which forms from super-saturated sands. Several hikers have had to be rescued from the area over the years after becoming victim to quicksand. Rattlesnakes will occasionally take shade inside slot canyons so watch where you step.
When To Go
Both Peek-a-boo and Spooky slot canyons can be visited year round, although the summer months are brutally hot. If you are like me and plan to spend all day in the desert sun, bring at least one gallon of water per person.
What To Bring
During summer months, a gallon of water should be sufficient. The hike to the canyons has no shade and becomes sweltering by mid-day. The rest of the year, a half gallon should be more than enough.
If you are not confident in your climbing and scrambling abilities, I suggest bringing a rope and friend to help you get down some of the steep sections.
Peekaboo And Spooky Slot Canyons
Shoes with good grip are a must, as are quick-drying clothing and flexible hiking pants.
Brimstone Gulch Add-on
For seriously adventurous folks, the nearby Brimstone Gulch can be added on for a full-day adventure. Brimstone is one of the darkest and narrowest slot canyons in the world, with several sections being so deep and twisted that daylight never reaches the floor. Be careful not to go after any rains as deep pools can form, and be aware of your limits. Hikers have become trapped in here. Directions are included in the interactive map above.
Peekaboo And Spooky Slot Canyon Map Location
Photos of Spooky and Peek-a-boo
Peekaboo And Spooky Slot Canyon Maps
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below!