This is probably one of my favorite hikes so far – Angel Slot Canyon near the Dirty Devil area. Fairly easy (but may first be intimidating) rappels that are juicy beefy! True slot canyon squeezes that require some technical maneuvering… Oh and hey, it’s not too long! It’s another 3-4 hour, or in our case… 5-6 hour hike that’s less than 3-4 miles round trip.
Drive down to the trail head by heading towards Hanksville, Utah. On Highway 95, take the road marked “Angel Trail.” You will be taking dirt roads at this point so it may be preferable to have a high clearance car, especially if the road is washed out! We did see a Honda Civic at the end of the trail, so don’t be discouraged if you don’t have a monster truck. More specific directions and GPS coordinates can be found at this minislot guide or at Climb Utah. Spot for the visitor’s registry at the trail head.
You’ll be approaching from high ground. Follow through the fenced area to where you’ll see a post.
Follow the trail downwards into the canyon.
You’ll follow the wash off to the right which outlines the trail until you approach the first rappel.
This first one is 70 feet. Careful that some of the ledges may give out – a lot of them seem to be thinning out. You’ll tie onto a large boulder for an anchor.
Watch the lip off that first step; it’s a bit tricky (but not too difficult) to find your comfort zone as you rappel down.
Then enjoy the ride! The scenery is just plain… majestic. The rappel is fairly straight-forward after the start – right up against a wall.
After you get down, continue to follow the canyon.
You’ll hit some down-climbing along the way. Then shortly, you’ll come upon the next rappel.
You’ll anchor via a lengthy webbing tied to a large boulder.
Oh wait. Maybe it was here where the ledge is thin… Okay, be careful here too! There’s a funny lip here as well. It’s easy to see the footing if you sneak a peek around the corner before your descent.
After this rappel, the canyon starts to narrow.
Here, we had a bit of squeezing and braced down-climbing. Fun stuff! It was a bit difficult to grab the camera out here at times because of how narrow the spots were… but I’ll let what photos I did take do the “talking”…
There’s a roped down-climb that you can basically brace yourself down to the bottom. It’s gets skinny to the point where you’re almost trying to skinny out of the chute. No real need for rappelling as we found out…
There’s another rappel towards the end before the canyon opens up… Tight quarters so one at a time here!
At one of these tight rappels (maybe two of them, come to think of it), we took off our shoes and rolled up our pants as there was still leftover wetness from the Friday rain.
It was shoes off for us until we reached the last and final rappel… The canyon opens up and you follow the path down to where you’ll see a large beefy rappel that turns to an overhang a little bit before the middle section.
Unfortunately, the anchor was washed out and we were too out of it to build another one… that was completely safe and tested. Rather, we stopped, had lunch then gathered up for our hike back.
Follow the easiest trail back towards the trail head. It’s fairly straight forward, but most directions point east and north.
Find the weakness in the route ahead and take heed. You’ll know you are on the right path when you hit familiar territory.