There are some cool Sand Caves to explore in Kanab, Utah. These sand caves are the remains of sand mining for glass, so they are man-made. These caves are also referred to as Moqui Caverns, but are just farther south from the Moqui Museum. Google Maps is a bit confusing since Moqui Cave takes to the museum in a cave, shown below.
You’ll want to go 0.4 mile farther south towards Kanab and the parking is on the west side of the road. The trail is actually across the street, so watch carefully before crossing. This photo is actually from within the Sand Caves, looking back at the parking. The lot isn’t huge, but it’s mostly obscured behind the trees in this photo.
As soon as you cross the road, you can easily get to the base of the red rock on the opposite side. This is where the climbing begins and the first part of this trail that isn’t super easy. This first photo is after already climbing up, looking down on the people scaling up and sliding down. It’s pretty steep and slippery with loose sand, so bring grippy shoes. I wouldn’t recommend bringing a pet and be careful with small children. They can do it though as long as you can help them. When we went back down, we scrambled and didn’t actually sit like some others did.
Once you get up the initial ascent, it’s mostly and easy stroll, but there is one other place that was slick, so we bent down and scrambled. You can see the caves ahead of you.
The caves are fun to explore. They are shallow and interconnected.
It’s too bad that there so many people have carved their names and vandalized it. Please try to leave no trace when hiking so others can enjoy the beauty too. There were a couple spots on the ceiling that weren’t marked up and the patterns were so cool!
Here are a few more photos of the Kanab Sand Caves.
Other hikes nearby are the Belly of the Dragon and Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch. Coral Pink Sand Dune State Park and Jackson Flat Reservoir are also close. Kanab also has fairly dark skies for night photography. Horseshoe Bend may also be along your way.
Stats: Distance – 0.5 miles round trip
Approximate hiking time – 20-40 minutes
Elevation gain – 82 feet
Difficulty – Moderate (Easy except slick section)
Trail – sandstone and trail of sand and rocks
Bathrooms – No
Seasons to hike – Year-round
Permits needed – None
Pets allowed – Yes (but it might be a challenge to get them up)