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Dangerous Hike: The Maze, Utah

The Maze District in the Canyonlands National Park only receives about 2,000 visitors per year, a significantly lower amount than any other part of the park. The reason isn't because it's not a fascinating hiking area, but more because of how dangerous it is. The Maze is the least accessible district of Canyonlands: you are pretty much guaranteed to need a high-clearance four-wheel-drive to get to the entrance of all trails. And, you'll need to bring a lot of gear, as food, water and gasoline won't be found in the area. Plan trips for spring, when temps are lower and a few potholes may hold water. A 25-foot length of rope is often essential for raising or lowering packs in difficult spots. Many routes may make hikers with a fear of heights uncomfortable. Permits are required for all overnight trips in the backcountry. Most hikers that make it to the area spend more than 3 days, often upwards of a week, exploring the area. Since it takes so much preparation to successfully enter, you really want to plan a full trip so that you can see all of the following features: The Doll House, Maze Overlook, Land of Standing Rocks, Golden Stairs, Orange Cliffs. If you aren't familiar with reading topographical maps and you don't own a gps, this isn't the trip for you! Staff members are available at 435-259-4351 to help with trip planning form M-F, 8am to 12:30PM Mountain Daylight time, and sometimes until 4PM. The Hans Flat Ranger Station is open year-round from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There is a small sales area with books and maps. There are no amenities like food or gas, no entrance fees and no potable water sources in the Maze District. It takes about 6 hours from the station by 4 wheel drive to make it to the Maze District. There are few major ways to reach the Maze Overlook and other popular destinations, but be sure to research your trip for the most up to date information: - Visitors with two-wheel-drive vehicles may park at the North Point Road junction, approximately 2.5 miles southeast of the Hans Flat Ranger Station, and hike 15 miles to the Maze Overlook. - Depending on the vehicle, hikers may also be able to negotiate the 14-mile road to park at the top of the Flint Trail switchbacks. - Another popular way for backpackers to reach the Maze is via jet boat shuttle from Moab. A two-hour shuttle provides access to Spanish Bottom on the Colorado River. From there, a foot trail climbs over 1,000 feet to the Doll House.
Something about hiking in a very dry place makes me nervous. You never know when you could run out of water!
I wanted to go here one summer but my mom isn't big on hiking; bummer!! @happyrock Ill keep these tips for next time :)
I've always wanted to visit Zion national park to see rock formations like this. Because of the sun and heat, though, I might have to sit this trail out.
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Health & Hike Update 1/10
Hello, my buff Vinglers! Earlier today I decided that instead of going to the gym, that I'll go on a hike. This hike was a tad more challenging than the first hike I went on, but it was totally doable. Last week, I went on a hike that was 6 miles long with an elevation of 400 feet. Today, I went on a hike that was a little bit over 6 miles, with an elevation of 1,000 feet. I made many mistakes on my previous hike, so I was better prepared this time. I had layers of clothing, food, and water. I think next time I need to actually bring a backpack, along with gloves and any other attire that would help keep me warm. I think for these hikes, I am having a difficult time trying to control my breathing. The pain I feel in my whole lower body is something I can ignore. My quads are pretty strong, so although I get tired, it's not as big of a challenge as the whole breathing thing. If any of you are avid hikers, or know a thing-or-two, please let me know about any tips that can help reduce my gasping for air when I am on going on a sharp uphill. I had a great time on my hike. These past two hikes are actually with a group of people who meet every weekend to go hiking. So, not only am I getting some activity in, I am meeting new people. In two weeks, there is a hike that has an elevation of around 2,000 feet and I am feeling pretty nervous about it, but I think I just might dive into it. The good thing about the hikers in the group, is that they are incredibly patient, they don't leave anyone behind, and we do take a few breaks. As far as my overall health, I am glad to report that my diet last week was almost flawless. I'd say I ate healthy 95% of the time, the other 5% percent I did grab a few not-so-great snacks, but that's okay. I am gradually trying to retrain my body in eating healthier foods. It can be a bit of a challenge because at the office, we do have junk-y food, so it's sometimes hard to not munch on it. No worries! Everything in moderation. Oh, I also did the squat challenge that I had going on during the week. A big thank you to those who participated and threw in some very encouraging words. I really appreciate it! You guys are the bomb.dot.com. Anyway, I had a successful health week. I ate well, I moved more, I meet new people, and I was in nature. I hope all of you had a great week!