The gap (bottom right) we had to drive through from an old rock fall
Continuation of our adventures in Canyonlands
After exciting the park we headed for an off road experience in our Mitsubishi Outlander on a route which went from the high plateau down to the Colorado on an old mining road. The junction we took was to Dead Horse State Park and we then took a left fork to head down the route to Long Canyon. The road was classed as “improved” and as we set off we were not too sure what it was improved from! After a mile or so we came across some great camp sites as we reached the edge of the plateau and the track plunged off the edge of the world.
The first section was steep with a few switchbacks on a mixture of rock or sand. At which point we came across this huge rock which had fallen from a high stack across the road leaving a small tunnel through which we had to drive. At the same time the track became very uneven with careful navigating required to avoid grounding the car or scratching it!
Thereafter the track became a bit more road like as we continued down into the canyon with a few more switchbacks before levelling out as we approached the Colorado river.
All in all it was awe inspiring descending deeper into the canyon as the canyon walls rose ever higher above us with ever changing views as we wound our way down. Both of us agreed that it was a special experience, even if the heart rate was above normal at times!
At the end of our off road experience we joined Rt279, more locally known as Potash road due to the mining operation at one end. So on a super road we drove down besides the Colorado river with imposing red sandstone cliffs on either side towering above us.
Click the play button below for a video taken on our drive down. Note this video also covers the Schafer Road drive and hike to Corona Arch.