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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Nego Bills Canyon- Moab, UT

Negro Bill Canyon:  Moab, Utah
The Morning Glory Arch/Natural Bridge
Welcome to the last post in my "Weekend in Moab" series!  
Our last adventure was a 5 miles hike in Negro Bills Canyon, 
a dog friendly hiking area right next to Arches National Park.

Trailhead is located about 3 miles east of the junction of Route 128 and US Route 191 in Moab, Utah. 
Distance:  4 mile Round Trip
Elevation:  300' (relatively flat)
Dogs:  Yes! Off leash 
Notes:  This trail is relatively flat, and follows a river the entire time, making it a GREAT trail for dogs.  The biggest issue is this trail is LOADED with poison ivy.  Your dog running lose through poison ivy will not end well (I had it for almost a month!)  If you are sensitive to poison ivy, keep your dog on-leash and be very aware of it! Also, if your dog is off-leash, be warned there are cactus all over the trail-  be careful! 

So what's in a name?
According to Wikipedia...."The canyon was named after William Granstaff, a mixed-race cowboy, who prospected and ran cattle in the desert canyon in the late 1870s with a Canadian trapper named "Frenchie". They took joint possession of the abandoned Elk Mountain Mission fort near Moab after 1877, and each controlled part of the Spanish Valley. Granstaff fled the area in 1881 after being charged with bootlegging whiskey to the IndiansUntil the 1960s, the canyon was named 'Nigger Bill Canyon".  Source

The entire hike crosses this little stream while making your way through this gorgeous canyon.  This little stream drains directly into the main channel of the Colorado River. 

The scenery, the rocks, the plants, and the little stream were absolutely beautiful.  Olive also had her first meeting with a cactus. 

This little stream between the canyons made for some great pictures...
 and a really happy Olive! 

Really cool geology in this canyon!

Yep that trail sign says up! 
 It was a generally easy hike (2.5 miles each way) with little incline except for spots like this. 

This is your reward at the end of the hike...
 this really awesome arch called Morning Glory Arch. 

There was a group of climbers repelling down the arch as we got there.  
This was really cool and terrifying to watch. 

We had such a great hike here. 

There were tons of dogs off leash and playing in the water, and a lot of beautiful scenery to take in.  This arch/natural bridge at the end of the hike was the icing on top of the cake.  A lot of people did this hike barefoot as you have to cross the stream a bunch of times and will get your feet wet :)  A lot of the hike is trudging through sandstone so it was definitely a good workout and would feel good barefoot. 

 Also. it is important to note there is a TON of poison ivy here... as advised on the trail head signage.  Of course, I only have to look at it to get it so I came home with some pretty nasty poison ivy I am still battling.  Totally worth it for this hike! 


  1. Sucks that you got poison ivy. At least you also got some great photos out of it.

  2. It wouldn't be a Katie Adventure without some itching and swelling, now would it?

    1. seriously! ugh, I get poison ivy by looking at it I swear! its miserablleeeeee

  3. Nice to see this trail without snow! Olive looks like she had a blast! I can't believe you got poison ivy - we didn't see it anywhere in February! - Alicia @

    1. Good to know- if I ever do it again it will have to be winter! I even had it on the bottom of my feet. nightmare!


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