Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (with Map & Photos)

The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM) is a US National Monument originally designated in 1996 as 1,880,461 acres (7,610 km 2 ) of protected land in southern Utah. In 2017, the size of the monument was halved by the following presidential decree. The land is one of the most remote in the country; it was the last to be mapped in the contiguous United States.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

Covering an area of ​​7,689 km², the size of Delaware; The Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in southern Utah in the United States is truly a spectacular site. This vast and wild landscape abounds with geological formations, created over millions of years. The monument is a research site for scientists in the fascinating field of geology, but Grand Staircase-Escalante is also a dream destination for adventurous travelers.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

You can find the monument between Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and Bryce Canyon. The town of Escalante is one of the most important gates of Grand Staircase-Escalante. Due to its deep canyons, rugged cliffs, and rugged terrain, the outdoor adventures you'll find at Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument are authentic and memorable.

What to see at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument


This national monument is divided into three geographical sections. The first section is the Grand Staircase, which is made up of a series of plateaus descending from Bryce Canyon. This landscape is also full of different cliffs that fall vertically. Some of the most notable cliff names are Gray Cliffs, Chocolate Cliffs, Pink Cliffs, and White Cliffs. As the names of the cliffs indicate, this landmark highlights a very colorful landscape that will delight all photography lovers.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

The second part of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is called the Kaiparowits Plateau. It is the most remote and arid part of the monument. The Kaiparowits Plateau is over 2000m high and looks like a huge greenish-gray triangle-shaped structure from afar. The third section is called Cañones del Escalante and consists of huge walls, caves and imposing canyons.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

Camping, off-road driving, mountain biking, and hiking are some of the activities you can enjoy at Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument. The surroundings are naturally beautiful, it is the ideal place for some postcard-worthy photographs. To make your stay at the Grand Staircase unforgettable, stop by one of the many visitor centers near the monument. The centers are located in places like Escalante, Cannonville, Kanab and Paria.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

Lower Calf Creek Falls is one of the most popular hiking trails in the monument area. This moderate to difficult hike covers 8.8 km and takes you to a beautiful waterfall. There are also many trails that give access to the Escalante River. If you want a challenge, go through areas populated by canyons and cliffs like Death Hollow, Twenty-mile Wash, and Gulch. If you want to walk in the countryside all day, please note that you must obtain the necessary permission from the Escalante Interagency Visitor Center.

While there are designated campgrounds; Expect camping in parts of the monument to be quite rugged, with few facilities. This is because much of the Grand Staircase is still wild and natural. Canyoning in various canyons such as Peek-a-boo and Spooky Canyons in the Grand Staircase is very popular. But also keep in mind that some guns should only be used by people with advanced skills and extensive experience. If you are not very confident in your search, enlist the help of guides who will be happy to organize an expedition for you and your group.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument

If you plan to visit the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument on a day trip, consider accessing more easily accessible areas like Grosvenor Arch and Devil's Garden Natural Area. If you only have a few hours, consider driving to Utah Scenic Byway 12 or US Route 89, which have incredible views of the Grand Staircase landscape.

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Map