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Sunrise over the Doll House. Photo by Jared Warren
1 mile / The Spires
The Maze District is this desert paradise’s most remote corner, and there’s no better introduction to the area than this rare maintained trail from the Colorado River to a temple of sandstone spires. From the Spanish Bottom beach, take the Spanish Bottom Trail, stair-stepping more than 1,000 feet in elevation in less than a mile, to the Doll House’s hundred-foot rock pinnacles. Short loops from here lead to Ancient Puebloan granaries and an overlook across the verdant Surprise Valley—if you can tear yourself away from the twisting playground within.
Trailhead 38.158080, -109.934478 (3.5 miles south of the confluence of the Colorado and Green Rivers; accessible via raft, canoe, jet boat)
Total hike 4.3 miles round-trip
Camping Allowed at Spanish Bottom with river permit ($30 + $20/person; canypermits.nps.gov) or on the rim with a backpacking permit