Gambling and Hiking in So. Utah

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Q. What hike in Southern Utah/ Northern Arizona combines gambling, hiking and adventure?

A. A hike to The Wave.

Just returned from a one week vacation to Southern Utah.

We had a great time hiking and exploring from Zion to Blanding, UT.

We flew into Salt Lake City, picked up a rental car and drove to Kanab, UT.

Kanab is currently repaving Hwy 89 that runs through town.

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Kanab and Southern Utah is known as a prime film location and the town
is proud of their movie history.

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Our first task of the morning was to visit the BLM office in Kanab to
fill out an application for a permit for The Wave. 20 people are allowed
to access The Wave per day. 10 from an online lottery and 10 from the
walk-in lottery.

Applications for the walk-in lottery for a Wave permit closes at 9am
at which time they assign a number to each application.

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Now the fun begins. They have a bingo ball cage filled with numbered
balls. The cage turns and a ball lands in the catch. If that number
matches your application number, you have a permit to The Wave for
the next day.

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Our application number was called on the second turn of the cage.

Application numbers got called out, there was one group of three,
and three groups of two for nine people. So there was one spot left.

The next number called was for a group of two and they declined
their spot. Same with the next number called. The following number
that was called again was for a group of two but they took the single
spot. They ended up both going and violating the the permit restriction.

From the highway, it's an eight mile drive on a decent dirt road to the
Wire Pass trailhead.

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The BLM gives you really great instructions to get to The Wave
but you need to do some navigating as there is no "established"
trail. It felt like we were in the Amazing Race.

Google map showing our path to The Wave.

The Wave entrance is the inverted V notch on the sandy brown
hills below the grayish mountain in the left 1/3 of the next image.

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The actual Wave is pretty small, a main bowl and two smaller side
slots. The erosion that carved out The Wave looks to be a drainage
from a mountain above The Wave. The patterns created by the curves
of the drainage combined with the sandstone layering and crossbedded
sandstone is fantastic. I've heard it described as sandstone taffy.

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Everything looks different on the hike back, funny how that is.

Thanks for checking out my post. If you're in the area, apply for a
permit to The Wave, someone has to win, why not you?

Related thread.



Alvin
 
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LyndeeLoo

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Now this is an outstanding thread, Alvin. Well done, and thanks so much for the documentation; very useful!! Also, the images are excellent!
 
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Interesting thread and photos, Alvin. Most posts of this site just show abstracts of the sandstone formations, with no environmental shots to provide context. Thanks for posting.

We were not so lucky with our application for May, 2011, so we hiked Buckskin Gulch nearby, and got a friend with a Jeep to take us to White Pocket.
 
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Thanks for the post, Alvin. You provided an excellent description and advice. I hope to take advantage of this at some point. Really nice images too.

Thanks John.
I figured, it's be a no lose situation. If we were lucky to get a permit,
fantastic, if we didn't get a permit, there's plenty of amazing sights
to see in the area.

Now this is an outstanding thread, Alvin. Well done, and thanks so much for the documentation; very useful!! Also, the images are excellent!

Thanks Lyndee.

I like the narrative to go with the visuals - I'll have to get down there next winter.

Sean

Thanks Sean. I wanted to add a little more information in a Wanderlust
thread. Whether you get a permit or not, there's a lot to see.


Interesting thread and photos, Alvin. Most posts of this site just show abstracts of the sandstone formations, with no environmental shots to provide context. Thanks for posting.

We were not so lucky with our application for May, 2011, so we hiked Buckskin Gulch nearby, and got a friend with a Jeep to take us to White Pocket.

Thanks Jim. I checked out your White Pocket thread. I'd like to visit
there someday. The entire region is really stunning. How was Buckskin
Gulch? I know it's accessible from the Wire Pass Trailhead.
 
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Thanks Jim. I checked out your White Pocket thread. I'd like to visit
there someday. The entire region is really stunning. How was Buckskin
Gulch? I know it's accessible from the Wire Pass Trailhead.

Buckskin Canyon is a very interesting place. I posted a thread here back in 2010.

There is also a B&W photo here.
 
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Great thread, thank you for sharing your insights, Alvin!
 
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Buckskin Canyon is a very interesting place. I posted a thread here back in 2010.

There is also a B&W photo here.

Buckskin Gulch looks amazing. I need to go there.

Very fine set Alvin!

Thanks Rob.

Great images and commentary...! :cool:

Thanks William.

Great story with great photos.

Thanks Brad. I hope it's helpful to folks.

Great thread, thank you for sharing your insights, Alvin!

Appreciate your comments KP.
 
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Thanks for updating the link! Wonderful images and very helpful information!
Thanks Karen, I hope it helps someone who's planning on going to The Wave.

How did this thread get revived? I had forgotten it until I saw my posts above. The links in my posts to my older threads no longer work, unfortunately.
Hey Jim, this post was cross-linked to another thread that got revived. Some posts never die. :)
 
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This one shouldn't. Great resource. We didn't win the online lottery and didn't have time to wait at the office

Thanks Jeff. I've tried the online lottery a couple of times and never won.

I can't remember exactly how long the on site lottery took, I'm guessing we were their from around 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM.

The lottery affair didn't seem to last that long and if you're in the area, and have some flexibility in your schedule, you should give it a shot. I figured, what the heck, if we won a slot, it would be wonderful and if we didn't, then there are other places to visit.

I recall we were assigned the number 13. When that number assignment came up, my girlfriend said that she knew we'd get a slot.

Anyways, it was a great trip, the hike was hot, into the 90's and we carried a lot of water. I had my camera bag and attached a Camelbak to the outside and my girlfriend also carried about a gallon of fluids, there's no shade out on the trail so you have to be prepared.

Usually the hike is safe if you're in reasonable condition and you have plenty of water and supplies. I think I read there was only one death in recent memory prior to 2013, but in 2013, there were multiple fatalities due to heat exhaustion. For lottery winners, the BLM folks will advise you on navigation and safety. You can't take safety for granted on this hike.
 
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A very enjoyable narrative along with a nice set of photos. I have never heard of this lottery previously. I have duck and goose hunted in the past and been in a lottery for a hunting blind, but it is interesting that they are using a similar process to allow photographers access to the "wave" sight. It looks like a place I would love to visit. Thanks for the tips on the area.
 
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A very enjoyable narrative along with a nice set of photos. I have never heard of this lottery previously. I have duck and goose hunted in the past and been in a lottery for a hunting blind, but it is interesting that they are using a similar process to allow photographers access to the "wave" sight. It looks like a place I would love to visit. Thanks for the tips on the area.

I guess it's fair for popular locations. They set aside a number of permit slots for an online lottery and some for an onsite lottery.

Thanks for commenting jadlh!

Alvin
 

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