Anza Borrego Slot Canyon Hike

This past Christmas during our visit with family, we drove out to California’s Anza Borrego desert to hike a slot canyon. Known mostly for the wildflowers that bloom profusely here in March—if they get enough rain—the slot canyons of this desert are less known. But they’re no less interesting to enjoy.

To a seasoned hiker, the canyons are a piece of cake. But they’re definitely not ideal for anyone who has an older baby who needs a stroller. Sure footing is not guaranteed.

This ocotillo is a very common site out here and the source of the name of a nearby town. If you ever have the chance to see it in bloom, you’ll want your camera.

IMG_3545-aseIMG_3454-aseMy mother in law joined us on this hike. There were some spaces along the trail we took that meant walking sideways or jumping from ledge to ledge if you wanted to be above the footpath. Parcour!IMG_3414-ase copy
IMG_3426-ase copyIMG_3457-aseIMG_3443-ase copyIMG_3490-ase



At some point, the more nimble of our party decided to head back up the canyon walls and make their way back that way. Or maybe they just wanted to see if it could be done.IMG_3461-ase

Jesse and I had to try.IMG_3471-ase

I also met some of the local wildlife. I missed my macro. He was pretty mellow. Or she. IMG_3492-ase

For scale, and so you know I got close and am not making this up…IMG_3494-ase

Eagle rock!IMG_3495-ase


(Yes, this one is intentionally here. I accidentally snapped this one, but I think it’s a happy accident).IMG_3510-ase



I love the colors.IMG_3535-ase


After the hike, we headed to the nearby town of Julian which is known locally for the arts and crafts but mostly for their apple pies. Because there is a very good reason for their fame, there is no picture of pie. I will say, however, that it is the pie that inspired me to re-attempt making pie crust. Inspirational pie.

5 thoughts on “Anza Borrego Slot Canyon Hike

  1. Catalina said:

    Looks beautiful!

  2. mercedes said:

    Thanks, Cat! You would have enjoyed it 🙂

  3. Edith said:

    very interesting – it looks a lot different than the slot canyons in Moab, UT just because of the dirt. I am also glad that you captured that petrified cow poop!

  4. mercedes said:

    That’s not cow poop! That’s swirly sand stone…likely what happens when you have a large amount of water swirling around and running off…you know, because this isolated area was all under water at one point then the water receded.

  5. simis said:

    Looks like you had a fun trek! Lovely photos all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *