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Reflection Canyon

 5.0 (4)
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15.4 Miles 24.7 Kilometers

1,234' 376 m


-1,233' -376 m



Avg Grade (2°)


Max Grade (14°)

4,466' 1,361 m


3,929' 1,198 m


Shared By Steve Springer



Getting forecast...

Reflection Canyon is a must-see that requires nearly 8.5 miles of navigating across singletrack and slickrock.

Steve Springer

Dogs Leashed

Features Lake · Views · Commonly Backpacked

Free overnight permits can be obtained in the Escalante Visitor Center.


This is a challenging route with great views of Navajo Mountain on the way to Reflection Canyon. Plan to arrive at Reflection Canyon in time for sunset and then get up for sunrise. Both events result in stunning views that are worth the effort it takes to reach the canyon!


This trail starts at Reflection Canyon and returns to the trailhead parking area. By taking a more direct route across the slickrock, we were able to cut some distance on the beginning section but lost it later when we went around a mesa that we could have gone over. The slickrock section is not marked at all, and the dirt section has a few cairns, but there can be multiple routes or no visible routes at all depending on when it has last rained. You need to carry all your water for your entire trip, as there is no consistent water source on the trail. The route is constantly up and down but with very little net elevation change.


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Sep 20, 2018
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May 13, 2018
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May 11, 2018
Dannon See
May 5, 2018
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Trail Ratings

  5.0 from 4 votes


  5.0 from 4 votes
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Jacob Mattson
Lehi, UT
Jacob Mattson   Lehi, UT
Visited from March 29th-30th. There was a break in the wet spring weather so it was clear and warm the entire trip. Hole-in-the-Rock road is washboard for most of the 40 or so miles to the trailhead. When it isn't washboard, large boulders and loose gravel will test the limits of your vehicle. From Escalante to the trailhead is about 2 hours. Once you get the the trailhead, you head SSW for most of the trip. There are a few meandering trails in the beginning so a GPX file on a GPS app or GPS is ESSENTIAL. The first 4 miles are up and down slot canyons. The closer you stay to the cliffs to the west, the better. There were a few times we slotted out and we had to travel due west to find a way down into the canyons. If you have the energy, going down and up the steep sides of the canyons will shave quite a bit of distance off but it does wear you out. After you clear the canyons, you will begin to see the beginnings of a trail. Feel free to follow that trail for the next 2 miles or so. You should stay in the brush and be heading south. If you head east or you start to drop elevation quickly, try retracing your steps. Again GPS IS ESSENTIAL. Cows are plentiful along the trail depending on what time of year you go. They keep to themselves. We had a late start so we ended up camping about 5 miles from the trailhead. The next morning we packed up and continued to follow the trail for the next mile or so until the GPX file we were following had us start heading ESE. You drop elevation and you start to climb up and down slickrock faces. As a general rule, if you head ESE you should eventually reach a point where there are really deep sandstone pot holes. Continue going ESE until you reach a really steep sandstone face. Climb to the top of that and then you will be faced with a vista that is breathtaking. No it's a looooong hike back to the car. TO BRING: Water (I took 4 liters and ran out about a mile from the car.) Water filter (There were a few potholes that had water, bu Apr 25, 2018

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