From the unmarked Cottonwood Canyon trailhead off Road 400 (Cottonwood Canyon Road), head west into a scrub-dotted sandstone canyon. The going is generally easy on this relatively flat 3.2-miler, but you’ll have to maneuver around the remnants of a rockslide early in the hike. After swinging around the right side of the debris, you’ll stroll north as the canyon walls grow increasingly tighter.
Reach an opening in the canyon as the upper trailhead comes into view above the trail to the east. Stay on the main trail here to continue north into the Upper Narrows Extension. Just past the opening, the wash delves into a proper slot canyon as the trail twists through a brilliantly-colored hallway of Navajo Sandstone. Upon reaching the northern terminus of the canyon, turn around to hike back to the upper trailhead and return to your car via the road.
Visit the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Web site for more information on Cottonwood Narrows.
-Mapped by Charlie Hart