The Wave in Utah, Arizona and why hikers don’t share their secret places
Published: June 26, 2013 10:29AM
Updated: June 26, 2013 10:29AM
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This May 28, 2013 photo shows a hiker taking a photo on a rock formation known as The Wave in the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument in Arizona. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management limits the number of permits for hikers to 20 a day in order to preserve the backcountry wilderness experience and protect the sandstone formation. (AP Photo/Brian Witte)

The Associated Press discovered what a select group of hikers discovered long ago.

The Wave on the Utah-Arizona border is breathtaking. But, while it’s not crowded by, say, national park or the mall the Saturday before Christmas standards, there’s too many people wanting to hike there for the sensitive and dangerous area to handle. Thus, the Bureau of Land Management has a lottery to determine who gets to hike The Wave.

It’s reasonable and heartbreaking at the same time. It’s also an example of why I occasionally hear Utah outdoor lovers say something to the effect of, “There’s spots in this state I’m never telling anyone about.”

A lot of people go into the Utah outdoors for solitude. As we’ve seen with the Wave, which the AP article describes as growing in popularity since it became a national monument in 2000, protecting something can sometimes bring as much attention to it as promoting it.

— Nate Carlisle

Twitter: @UtahHikes

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