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Hiking Water Canyon - Canaan Mountain, Southern Utah

Updated: Sep 22, 2020

Water Canyon is a hidden gem of a hike located just outside of Hildale, UT.

The trail is beautiful and interesting from start to finish with rock scrambling, sheer red cliffs, a shallow year-round creek, a waterfall canyon oasis, and stunning valley views.

At 4.25 miles out and back and 500ft of elevation gain, this hike makes for the perfect morning or afternoon adventure for outdoor lovers and adventurous families.


To get to the first section of the flowing waterfall canyon, the trail is 4.25 miles round trip. You can hike up the canyon further, but this is for advanced hikers only.


I have done this hike with kids plenty of times. It is a trail that can be tricky at times with uneven terrain and moderate elevations gain, but if you have lots of snacks, and patience, this is a fun one for little hikers.


Water Canyon is located just outside Hiledale Ut in the Canaan Mountain Wilderness south of Zion. This is a convenient hike if you are staying in Hurricane or Kanab on your trip to Southern Utah. It is a 55-minute drive west of Kanab and a 40-minute drive southeast of Hurricane. Click here for map & directions


I have hiked Water Canyon in the spring, summer, winter, and fall. Winter is a little more tricky because there could be snow and ice, but if you're lucky, the canyon walls will be covered in ice. It's quite a sight!

In the spring, you are more likely to get beautiful flowing waterfalls in the canyon due to all the spring runoff.

In the heat of the summer, this is a great trail because of the flowing stream is great for cooling off and there is plentiful shade. The canyon is lush and green, and oh so pretty!


After a bumpy 1-2 mile dirt road, you will come to designated parking and the start of the sandy trail. The path is well worn and, at times, splits off, but whatever route you take, it always comes back together.

This hike can be a little tricky for some due to all the rock scrambling that is required. As you venture up the canyon look up to your right to find an arch in the rocks.

Also, keep an eye out for narrow slots along the trail that only little kids can slide into. The wide-open canyon at the end of the hike has streams and waterfalls and is the perfect spot to rest, eat lunch, and explore. Return the way you came.

Scroll down for tips and additional info.