Kanab, a tiny picturesque town nestled in Utah’s sage-studded desert, is a colorful place. It’s known for intensely hued rocks, mysterious slot-canyons, stately junipers, and all-around adventurous terrain. Naturally, a place with such otherworldly beauty (and a place that happens to be within day-tripping distance of Vegas) draws plenty of visitors.
Here are our five favorite ways to slip away and get to know the landscape.
Hike White Pocket
Here’s one adventure that you’ll want a proper four-wheel-drive vehicle to access. But is it worth it? A hundred times, yes. Grab a detailed map and head to this multi-colored natural work of art. You can hike a half-day to explore the main Slickrock trail or spend an entire weekend getting to know these swirling rocks’ nooks and crannies. If the drive sounds intimidating, not a worry: multiple guide services in Kanab offer tours of White Pocket year-round and would be happy to take you there and show you the scenery.
Wander the site of an old ghost town
Plagued by the regular flooding of the Paria River, this old, nameless, western town outside Kanab was slowly abandoned by its inhabitants in the late 1800s and early 1900s. It remained a popular movie set for Western films until the set burned down years ago. Little remains of the old ghost town, but what does remain is worthy of the drive. Take a vehicle that can handle the dirt road that accesses the townsite. But take our pro tip: make the drive in the late afternoon as the sun lights up the rocky landscape before sunset.
Explore the Kanab Caves
It’s a fairly short walk—and a bit of a scramble—to get into this stunning series of cave rooms. This is another destination that’s perfectly lit shortly before sunset, so a late-afternoon visit is ideal—perhaps after dropping by nearby Best Friends Animal Sanctuary to feel the love from some rescue animals. The caves are visible from Highway 89 just after you pass the animal sanctuary. You’ll have a brief hike across the sagebrush country, keeping the caves insight. Once you approach them, you can scramble up the rocks and shimmy right in.
Gaze into the North Rim of the Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is, of course, on everyone’s tick-list. But a tiny percentage of Grand Canyon visitors go to the more out-of-the-way North Rim—which happens to be accessible from Kanab via a two-hour drive. Snag a map and take a day to explore beyond the Visitor Center. Stunning vistas, airy trails, and unparalleled vastness await North Rim visitors. And, quiet, lots of peace and quiet.
Start planning your trip today! Visit www.VisitSouthernUtah.com.
Last modified: September 18, 2020