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Utah Hike of the Week: Black Dragon Canyon on the San Rafael Swell

First Published      Last Updated Oct 27 2016 05:27 pm

Directions • From the town of Green River, take Interstate 70 west for 13.2 miles. On the north side of the interstate, just a few feet beyond mile marker 147, look for a turnoff in front of a livestock gate. (You can set your GPS for 38.925223, -110.416902.) Open the livestock gate and then close it behind you. Continue driving on the main sandy road north a few tenths of a mile and turn west at the sign for Black Dragon Canyon, also known as Black Dragon Wash. Follow the road into the canyon until the rocks become too large for your vehicle to drive over.

Hike • The highlight of this hike arrives early. The Black Dragon is on a wall of petroglyphs a short walk from the trailhead behind a fence built by the Bureau of Land Management. After viewing the panels, you can continue hiking the canyon via its main wash. The canyon continues gaining elevation for about 1.2 miles when you come across a BLM sign. The trail takes you on a road overlooking a depression within the canyon then arrives at an old mining car and remains of a building. There's also a view to the west of the remainder of the canyon and the San Rafael Swell.

— Nate Carlisle

Destination: Mining equipment in Black Dragon Canyon

Hiking time • 2 hours

Round-trip miles • 5.1 miles

Elevation gain • 1,370 feet

Difficulty • Easy

Trail head restrooms • No

Dogs allowed • Yes

Bikes allowed • Yes

Fees • No



— Goodbye until 2017

With the weather getting colder, this is the last Utah Hike of the Week this year. Watch for us again in the spring of 2017.