As a return to the Westwater Ranger Station boat launch from the Cisco takeout, this makes a great use of time between daily raft trips down through Westwater Canyon. The slow, rolling climbs up to the top of the mesa provide great views of the surrounding expanse. No water is available.
Need to Know
Make sure you have plenty of water. It's very dry, and there are no sources of water most of the year. If you are rafting/kayaking Westwater multiple days, then this is a great way to let others haul back the vehicles and watercraft while you get a good hike in. If you were to do this just as a hike, then you'll need to get dropped off at Cisco so you can meet the car back at Westwater Ranger Station/Put-in.
The first 7.3 miles are on a traditional graded dirt/gravel road at which point you exit onto an ATV dual-track. I did this hike on a Saturday evening starting at about 5:30 p.m. and did not encounter another person, on foot or vehicle. It was completely isolated and was amazingly peaceful.
Between miles 3 and 4, you'll find agates sitting on the road bed. I saw a few lizards, ravens, vultures, and a hawk. The ATV trail drops down into a fun little gully, crossing into a climb up to the high-point of the hike at about 9.5 miles.
The descent runs past the train tracks, and I had a train pass going the other direction where the trail was only a few yards away... it was very loud. The ATV trail ends at the pavement by the railroad overpass, and you hike the pavement to the ranger station for the last 1.5 miles.
Flora & Fauna
Lizards, birds, and small mammals (didn't see any of the mammals, but saw tracks).
Shared By: Vince Romney