Dirty Devil River - Slot Canyons


Apr 22, 2013
I've been wanted to tackle some canyons along the Dirty Devil River for quite some time. Happy Canyon definitely being the crown jewel but the lack of info on Scar Tissue intrigued me. So I packed my Subaru & headed out on Highway 95 to where the Dirty Devil River flows into Glen Canyon.

Its a 4 mile drive to the end of the road which is in pretty good shape with only a few places with require high clearance.IMG_5685.JPG

Not a lot of great places to camp but I found a place that worked out with the river being close by


Fun/hard part of hiking to the canyon is where to cross the river. I found following the river on the west bank as far as possible the best option as I tried a different route on the way back that was a lot more challenging.

Nice patch of flowers just randomly in the middle of nowhere.

I ended up walking up stream about a 1/8 of a mile to the canyon mouth. Water was cool but thankfully not too deep.

Once in the canyon it gets down to business in a hurry.

For the most part the canyon is straight forward with few obstacles.
IMG_5802.JPG I did find one place I had to exit the canyon with was pretty easy.


Eventually the canyon opens back up.


I continued to walk up Scar Tissue to the towers at the top, make for a nice place to have lunch & turn around.

Some of the challenges when coming back... not the best place to cross! Not to mention the bush whacking wasn't fun.IMG_5814.JPG

Time to leave Scar Tissue & head to Happy Canyon & leave the bush whacking behind!

Poison Springs Road to the trail head is just over 16 miles. I found the first 11 miles on Poison Springs Road to be in great shape & covered 11 miles in about 30 minutes. Once hitting the Black Jump & the mining road the last 5 miles took about 60 minutes. Nothing technical, just go slow, avoid rocks & don't fall off the cliff.





At the end of the road you are treated to some amazing views of the Dirty Devil River!


The hike to Happy Canyon is straight forward, just follow the well used path...



Not sure what these are for? Saw a few of them along the way.


Nice Hoodoos along the way & some petrified wood too!


Looking into the opening of Happy Canyon

Crossing the Dirty Devil River was much easier than Scar Tissue!


Heading into Happy Canyon


IMG_5912.JPG IMG_5916.JPG IMG_5917.JPG IMG_5945.JPG IMG_5979.JPG IMG_5996.JPG IMG_6005.JPG IMG_5955.JPG

Once the canyon starts to open up I followed the wash to the start of a spring which surprised me.

IMG_5964.JPG IMG_5965.JPG

Not a bad way to spend 3 days & the only people I saw were on Highway 95!
Very Nice. I've been curious about the 'other slots' down there. I'd like to chk out Two-Step Canyon as well. I'm jealous -- I was planning to be in that area right now, but I wasn't able to make it happen.
Hmm. Very nice to know that west side road is in good shape along the Dirty Devil. I've only been along the east side road, and it sucks.
damn, i miss the desert. everytime I see a trip report of the southwest I get nostalgic! Thanks

BTW this trip looks SWEET!
Fantastic! One of the more remote areas in the lower 48. My experiences have not been as positive.
Wow that canyon looks awesome, I need to hit that one up for sure. Thanks for the post and amazing pics!
Making me feel sad. When I attempted the "road" toward the Black Jump, it was so rough I turned back long before I got there. Now I need to go back and try again.
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