Saturday, September 8, 2007


What do you do with a three day Labor Day weekend lots of hiking gear and an appetite for slot canyons? You head to Southern Utah, strap on your hiking boots, and explore.
I had heard of the Box Death hollow in the Escalante region before, however Escalante is somewhat unexplored for me other than the very touristy places like Calf Creek Falls and Spooky, Peek-a-boo, and Brimstone canyons which are down the Hole-in-the-Rock road toward Lake Powell.
The full blown Box Death Hollow would involve a two car shuttle system or willingness to hitch hike. We had neither so we did a makeshift of the trip which, granted, is much less breathtaking than had we been able to do the whole trip, but it was fun to be outside in the sand.
Here is how we did it:

Saturday: Packed up and headed to REI to buy a map. (Never go hiking with out a good topo map) While at REI I managed to spend over $100 on camping equipment I’d always needed that just happened to be on sale. Yikes! I’m not even a shopper! I just love REI!


We slowly made our way south toward Escalante but by twilight we were only as far as a charming little Utah town called Torey. We found a camp spot in the Boulder mountains and then drove into Torey with all the Yuppies and suppered. It was wonderful. We had rattlesnake and salmon while we watched the alpenglow on the red rock and listened to some long haired hippy stroke his guitar. Sunday: We drove into Escalante and parked our car on the east side of town by the cemetery. We wandered into the canyon excited to be on the trail after about 20 windy turns of the Escalante River we were pretty tired and not as wowed by the scenery as we expected. We dropped our bags and continued up to the confluence of Box Hollow and the Escalante River.
As plain as the Escalante River had been Box Hollow was enchanting: a very narrow slot canyon with windy walls sloping up to the blue sky. We explored up the canyon for a while but eventually had to turn around. We supped on freze dried and then slept.
Monday: We hiked out in 3 hours and drove the 5 hours home.
How it should be done:
Day One: Park one car at Boulder Utah and one car at the Escalante River trail head. Hike the first day across the open on the old Bolder Mail Trail. Camp just before you drop into the canyon.
Day Two: Spend this day exploring swimming and enjoying windy Box Death Hollow.
Day Three: Get up early and push on out of the Escalante river canyon. Shuttle back to pick up your car and head on home.
I can’t wait to do it the real way.


Arwen said...

A hundred dollars!!! What would Dave Ramsey say?

Seriously though, I'm glad you had fun.

theriddle said...

I know I know I do try to keep up with Dave Ramsey, but I do have my emergency fund!

woodstrider said...

Sounds like you have a lot of fun in the slot canyons. I would like to try Box Death Hollow sometime myself. Your father must have taught you well, Luke. I am glad the you have a companion that you can enjoy these things with!

The Cranky Teacher said...

Having done it the "real" way, I've got to say you missed out. It's incredible. Watch out for poison ivy though! (Stay in the river and it's fine.) Glad to see you're having fun!