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The rugged beauty of Utah is beyond description. Utah is one of the most stunning states in the country - it is full of photogenic canyons, national parks, natural arches, pinnacles, and more. One of the popular slot canyons is Kanarra Creek Canyon, just outside the Kolob Canyons section of Zion National Park (Zion is one of the most breathtaking national parks and is certainly worth the hype).

Perhaps the most famous slot canyon in the country is the Antelope Canyon in the Navajo Nation in Arizona. A guided tour is required to access the Antelope Canyon, so plan ahead. Alternatively, there are also plenty of other lesser-known canyons in Utah just waiting to be discovered.


The Canyon's Kanarra Falls Trail

The Kanarra Creek Canyon is relatively easily accessed, and the hike is fairly short. The canyon is situated to the east of the town of Kanarraville and to the south of Cedar City. The route in it can be customized so that hikers can enjoy a straightforward or a more challenging hike.

The Kanarra Falls Trail is open year-round but with reduced hours in the winter. During the summer, spring, and fall, it is open from dawn to dusk.

  • Opening Hours: Dawn to Dusk (Spring, Summer, Fall)

It is simple and easy to get to the base of the first waterfall; hikers can basically continue as far as they feel comfortable. The canyon is remarkably photogenic as it is narrow.

The Kanarra Falls trail is not recommended for small children - but don't worry, Utah has plenty of other canyons more family-friendly to explore.

There are bathrooms at the parking lot and near the beginning of the hike - there aren't any after that. No pets are permitted - Kanarra Creek is the watershed for Kanarraville Town, so keep the water clean.

Related: How To Hike Lower Antelope Canyon (And Why You Should Go With A Guide)

The Kanarra Waterfalls & Challenges Of Getting Past Them

The greatest challenges on the hike are the two waterfalls. They block the narrow slot, and hikers need to get their feet wet and wade through the stream in a number of places. Getting wet may be a welcome relief in the heat of the summer.

To continue past the first falls, hikers need to climb the falls. Technical climbing gear is not needed to get past the falls. According to Kanarrafalls.com, there is a 20-food aluminum ladder to help get past the first falls. Be aware that the ladder can be slippery, wet, and icy.

If one would like to get past the Kanarra Falls, one will need some sure-footedness (so wear the appropriate footwear).

  • Tip: Take Sturdy Waterproof Hiking Boot and Hiking Poles
  • Ladder: There Is A 20-Foot Aluminum Ladder At The First Falls

For those who manage to get past the second waterfall, there is a nice swimming hole with a fun mossy rock slide waiting.

Between the two falls, there are other obstacles like large boulders to get past. If one gets to the second fall, do not go behind it. It is not safe, and it can take up to 7 hours to execute hikers from the canyon.

As a slot canyon, there is always the present risk of flash flooding - particularly in July, August, and September. Check the weather forecast before heading into the canyon.

Related: Visiting Zion? Explore It With One Of These Guided Tours

Get The Kanarra Falls Permit

To hike the trail, a permit is required (up to 150 permits are issued per day). The Kanarra Falls can be very popular, especially on weekends during the spring and summer. On these days, the tickets are likely to be sold out days in advance. The tickets cost $12.00 per person - even for children (except for babies three and under - they are free).

The permits can be purchased online or at the kiosk right at the trailhead. It is recommended to purchase the permits in advance as they are limited and may not be available on the day at the trailhead. Group discounts are not offered.

  • Limit: 150 Hikers Per Day
  • Cost: $12.00 Per Person

The permits are non-refundable and non-transferable, and they need to be purchased on www.kanarrafalls.com or at the trailhead. The permits are also only valid for the date they are issued.