Lovely Lower Calf Falls, Grand Staircase Escalante, UT
Distance: 6 miles to the lower tier of the waterfall (~8+ to the upper tier)
Elevation: ~500 ft
Difficulty: Easy (with a fair amount of thick sand walking)
Highlight: 126-foot cascade into a pool, giant petroglyphs
Only had time for the lower tier of perennial Calf Falls – it did not disappoint, but the people did. Unfortunately, my itinerary landed me here midday on a Sunday. Not the time to visit–far too many humans for my liking…
As you can see, this amazing gem is definitely worth a visit. Lower Calf Falls cascades over a nearly vertical cliff face into a large pool several feet deep and is enclosed on three sides by sheer Navajo sandstone walls. Pick up an interpretive pamphlet at the trailhead to learn about the flora along the trail and giant petroglyphs in the distance (too far to get a good pic).
Without question, Grand Staircase Escalante is National Park caliber and deserves to be preserved and protected. Stay tuned for more posts on this area!
Soapbox: If you bring pets, please pick up after them! This trail and falls area is small and quickly becoming overrun and overused. One fellow watched me watching him get a bag out to pick up his big Labrador’s poop, and then when I turned away, he walked away from it. ARRRGH! No respect for fellow hikers or nature. They should permit this hike, at least on weekends, and fine those who litter/leave dog poop. Don’t get me started about the imbeciles who bag poop and then leave it. I can’t get my head around people who go somewhere to appreciate nature and then defile it.
Getting there: Take highway 12 to the BLM-managed Calf Creek Recreation Area. Parking lot has limited parking. Go early or you may have to park along the highway.