Canyons, Arches & Cliffs In A Vast, Rugged Landscape
CANYONLANDS: THE NEEDLES DISTRICT
The Needles forms the southeast corner of Canyonlands and was named for the colorful spires of Cedar Mesa Sandstone that dominate the area. Hiking trails offer many opportunities for long day hikes and overnight trips. Foot trails and four-wheel-drive roads lead to such features as Tower Ruin, Confluence Overlook, Elephant Hill, the Joint Trail, Druid Arch and Chesler Park.
This area is famous for its rough jeep trails, including some that rank with the most challenging in the world. You need a high clearance 4x4 vehicle optimized for off-road travel to drive some of the routes here.
Squaw Flat Campground in the Needles District makes an ideal base camp for day hikes to popular destinations like Chesler Park, Druid Arch and the Joint Trail. There are 26 sites available on a first-come, first-served basis. Bathrooms, fire grates, picnic tables, tent pads and water are available year-round. This campground typically fills up every day from late March through June and again from early September to mid-October. Arrive early if you hope to get a site for a weekend stay.
In addition, there are three group camping areas in The Needles District, and they can be reserved in advance (reservation details). There are also 4 backcountry areas available for vehicle camping.
The Needles Visitor Center is open daily, spring through fall. Hours vary by season. Features include: exhibits, book and map sales, backcountry permits, picnic area, general information, wireless internet, and park rangers on duty. You can also watch a park orientation video. Water is available at the visitor center year-round. Electric outlets are not available.
GETTING THERE FROM BLANDING:
On US 191, drive 35 miles north of Blanding or 14 miles (22 km) north of Monticello, then take UT 211 roughly 35 miles west. UT 211 ends in The Needles, and is the only paved road leading in and out of the area.
We strongly recommend using a map to reach The Needles. GPS units frequently lead people astray
STAY & PLAY
Be sure to plan your meals and water supplies ahead of time. There might be a few small gas station along the way but you wont find many, if any, food options along this route.
FOOD & WATER
Be sure to plan your meals and water supplies ahead of time. There might be a few small gas station along the way but you wont find many food options along this route.
GAS & SUPPLIES
Same goes for fuel, hiking and camping supplies. Gear up now so you don't find yourself without the basic supplies and necessities. We wouldn't want a perfect day to go waste!
While cars can make it to the Visitors Center area, 4x4 & high clearance vehicles are highly recommended for this trip
140 Mile Round Trip
MAP & PLAN
Cell phone service is often limited on these far off adventures. Make sure to download or map your travel and hiking plans before you go out.