Thursday, November 27, 2008

Tower Ruin Trail in Horse Canyon

The Tower Ruin Trail is a side route to a small ruins site off of the Horse Canyon trail in the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park in southeast Utah. It took me about 2:00 hours of hiking up Salt Creek and Horse Canyon to get to the side trail.

The trail junction is about 1.0 miles past the Paul Bunyan Potty arch and is marked with a small sign. The Horse Canyon Trail continues for several more miles to the south. It is about 0.7 miles more to arrive at the ruins site.

The Tower Ruin overlooks a broad grassy area surrounded by steep sandstone walls. This area looks somewhat like nearby Chesler Park but without the Needles. The trail to the ruins site was a little more firm and a relief after the sand of Horse Canyon.

The Tower Ruin is a small site but is in a towering position. It appears to be a storage site but someone may have lived there also.

The ruins site appears to be a tricky place to get up to and doesn't have much room, but it appears to be well preserved with some roof beams still in place.

On the return hike, further to the south, a large arch is visible about a mile away. The park map shows Gothic Arch to be in that area. It took me 2:30 hours to hike to Tower Ruins with stops at the Paul Bunyan arch and the smaller arch before it. The return hike took 1:40 hours for a total hike of 4:10 hours for this 8 or 9 mile round trip.

  528614_Cool Camo Russell Outdoors

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