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Cathedral Wash

Difficult
 4.9 (19) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

Short and sweet slot canyon that ends on the banks of the Colorado River. Serious fun!


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Map Key

2.9

Miles

4.7

KM

Out and Back

3,435' 1,047 m

High

3,165' 965 m

Low

270' 82 m

Up

270' 82 m

Down

4%

Avg Grade (2°)

8%

Max Grade (5°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features River/Creek · Views

Overview

Cathedral Wash is a short and scenic slot canyon with easy access and big rewards. This moderate adventure has no major technical challenges, though there is some scrambling and care should be taken to choose safe routes over ledges and dropoffs. And, of course, any hike in this desert wilderness needs to be taken seriously with respect to heat and weather.

Need to Know

This canyon has potential for flash flooding - avoid if there are thunderstorms in the area.

Description

The trailhead for Cathedral Wash is 1.3 miles north of Navajo Bridge on the road to Lee's Ferry. From the parking pullout head east into lower Cathedral Wash, which at this point is a shallow sandy arroyo. As you walk downstream the canyon walls quickly rise above and the scenery improves dramatically. Further on, the wash develops into a true slot canyon, with high sheer walls, fantastic geology, and not much sunlight penetrating to the canyon bottom.

While most of the walking is easy, there are a few ledges that require some scrambling and care should be taken to scout the best route. Eventually Cathedral Wash opens up at the Colorado River within Marble Canyon. Because the Glen Canyon Dam is not far upstream, the river runs clear and blue here.

Enjoy the scenery, which may include groups of rafters just beginning their trips through the Grand Canyon from the Lee's Ferry put-in spot a few miles above. When you're done soaking in the canyon scenery head back up the way you came.

Shared By:

Almonzo Wilder

Trail Ratings

  4.9 from 19 votes

#367

Overall
  4.9 from 19 votes
5 Star
95%
4 Star
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3 Star
5%
2 Star
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Recommended Route Rankings

#21

in Arizona

#367

Overall
299 Views Last Month
14,411 Since Apr 26, 2015
Difficult

0%
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16%
16%
68%
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Photos

Deep in Cathedral Wash
Apr 26, 2015 near LeChee, AZ
Ascending out the Cathedral Wash slot canyon level by level...a very adventuresome route!
Jan 17, 2018 near LeChee, AZ
At the end of the Cathedral Wash it opens up to the Colorado River...great place to have lunch!
Jan 17, 2018 near LeChee, AZ
Some of the cool rock formations in the canyon
Jan 17, 2018 near LeChee, AZ
Descending the Cathedral Wash slot canyon level by level...a very adventuresome route!
Jan 17, 2018 near LeChee, AZ
Descending the Cathedral Wash slot canyon level by level...a very adventuresome route!
Jan 17, 2018 near LeChee, AZ

Weather


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Check-Ins

Feb 26, 2021
Nick Koester
Jan 12, 2021
Sandy Oaks
gorgeous
Dec 17, 2020
Christina Soto
Great hike, but very difficult, it is very tricky to navigate to get to the river. — 3h 00m
Oct 4, 2020
Johnny Addison
Awesome hike! Be prepared for a little bit of scrambling. River at the end of the trail makes the trip absolutely worth it.
Jul 11, 2020
Rick Walker
May 5, 2020
Kacper Pawlaczyk
16h 00m
Mar 8, 2020
Michael Messenger
Jan 27, 2020
Lukas Peschka
16h 00m