The "Secret" is out!
Although this beautiful slot canyon on the Navajo Nation near Page, Az has been largely kept a secret from the masses for many years, it's now becoming a very popular and highly sought after canyon, especially as an alternative to the overly commercialized Antelope Canyon. While some may still refer to it as Secret Canyon, a name without clear origin and used by the previous tour operator from 2006-2016, the new name going forward is Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon. The decision to rename it was made by the Native American family that has inhabited and grazed this land for many decades. They are also the majority owners of Horseshoe Bend Tours, offering exclusive access to the canyon their patriarch discovered over 100 years ago.
One of the biggest reasons for the canyon's new name is its proximity to the now world famous Horseshoe Bend Overlook, where countless people travel from around the globe to look down the 1000 foot high sandstone cliffs to the winding Colorado River below. Another reason is a very unique sandstone cliff formation that exists at the top end of the canyon that closely resembles the rock formation of the Horseshoe Bend Overlook only miles away. Once you see it , you'll understand.
Some people also know the canyon as "Upper Waterholes" because it is part of the upper drainage of the Waterholes Canyon that crosses under Highway 89 and continues west through narrow walls with big drops, eventually ending at the Colorado River.
In any event, this magnificent slot canyon is the same no matter what you want to call it. It's a canyon that is approximately 450-ft.-long and begins with narrow but relatively short walls. The walls get taller as you go farther into the canyon until they soar nearly 100 feet above, and with the narrowest section measuring about three feet across. The strata along the walls changes from one angle to the next – first the grooves are horizontal and pink but within a few inches they become vertical in shades of gray and brown, the result of thousands of years of wind and water erosion. Green moss and lichen grow in shady spots and piles of small rocks and tumbleweeds left over from flash floods rest in pockets in the walls. The light in the canyon changes drastically during different times of the day and the year – from brilliant orange to vibrant peach tones. It's truly a photographer's paradise.
Although this canyon is no longer a "secret", its exclusive tour operator, Horseshoe Bend Tours, is committed to maintaining the highest quality guest experience by limiting the number of visitors in the canyon at any one time. It's a very unique and sacred place.
We invite you to come experience the difference and then help us share the secret of Horseshoe Bend Slot Canyon.