Mexican Hat, Utah

Location: Southeast Utah

On US-163, 146 miles west of Durango, Colorado.

Mexican Hat Hiking Trails

Closeup of Moon House on the descent down the rockslide
Moon House Ruin

Distance: 3.2 - 5.6 miles (Round Trip)

Moon House, one of the best archaeology sites on Cedar Mesa, consists of three separate structures with 49 rooms. Well preserved pictorgraphs grace the walls of an interior courtyard and some of the rooms.

A slightly truncated view of Procession Panel
Procession Panel

Distance: 2.8 miles (Round Trip)

Without a doubt, my favorite rock art site along the Lower Butler Wash Road is the amazing Procession Panel, a 15-ft long petroglyph panel though to represent a ceremonial gathering or migration story.

Closeup of Nevills Arch
Owl Creek Canyon to Nevill's Arch

Distance: 4.8 miles (Round Trip)

This strenuous hike travels down stunningly beautiful Owl Creek Canyon to Nevill’s Arch, an imposing span located atop a high fin.

View of a partial intact roof on  one of the kivas
Seven Kivas

Distance: 2.8 - 4.4 miles (Round Trip)

This short hike travels down scenic Road Canyon to an amazing archaeology site with seven kivas.

The main section of the Wolfman Panel with a tall slender anthropomorph, two birds, a wolf print, two orb and other figures
Wolfman Panel

Distance: 0.8 - 1.4 miles (Round Trip)

The Wolfman Panel is fascinating both for its precise artwork as well as its interesting figures. The easy access and short hiking distance make this site a popular spot for rock art enthusiasts passing through the Bluff and Mexican Hat area.

View into the First Fork of Slickhorn Canyon
First Fork of Slickhorn Canyon

Distance: 4.9 - 9.0 miles (Round Trip)

Hikers making the very steep descent into the rugged, scenic First Fork of Slickhorn Canyon are rewarded with the opportunity to visit Perfect Kiva, one of the few kivas on Cedar Mesa that hikers are permitted to enter.

Closeup of the detail on the panel, note the fingers and toes of the pictured image
Lower Butler Wash

Distance: 3.0 - 5.4 miles (Round Trip)

This short, moderately-easy hike leads to a stunning rock art panel along the north side of the San Juan River.

Fallen Roof ruin
Road Canyon

Distance: 3.0 - 12.2 miles (Round Trip)

This hike can either be done as a short, moderately-easy walk to see Fallen Roof ruins or a long, more difficult trip that also visits Seven Kivas.

Sipapu Bridge from the trail climbing to to the rim.
Natural Bridges National Monument Loop Trail

Distance: 8.6 miles (Loop)

This great loop hike in Natural Bridges National Monument visits three majestic natural bridges, crosses a high desert landscape and wanders along two scenic canyons with rock art panels and ancestral Puebloan ruins

Close up of the ruins in Monarch Cave
Monarch Cave

Distance: 1.6 miles (Round Trip)

This short, easy trail leads to an impressive ruin, situated in a deep, east facing alcove beneath a pour-off. The site includes an interesting structure with rounded walls along with rock art, pottery shards and grinding stones.

Looking across the canyon at ruins tycked in an alcove beneath a large overhang
Lower Fish Creek Canyon

Distance: 3.6 - 8.0 miles (Round Trip)

A moderately-easy hike up a pleasant, shallow canyon with Ancestral Puebloan ruins and a few rock art sites.

Looking up the Trail Fork of Slickhorn Canyon
Slickhorn Canyon – Third Fork to Trail Fork

Distance: 10.5 miles (Loop)

This strenuous hike visits the scenic Third and Trail Forks of Slickhorn Canyon