Ruins in Road and Mule Canyons

Cedar Mesa, Utah

Fallen Roof Ruin in Road Canyon

"Turn off Hwy 261 onto Cigarette Springs Road, which is about 15 miles south of the intersection of Hwy 261 and Hwy 95. Set you odometer right here. At .9 miles, you will come to a gate (not closed) with a registration/sign in sign. Sign in and pay the $2 or whatever is was (this will be good for Mule Canyon too). The trailhead parking is exactly 2.5 miles from here (3.4 miles from highway), and is simply a left turn to the North. If you pass through another fence, similar to the one at .9 miles where you paid, you've gone slightly too far. Back track about 400 yards, and you should find the right place. This turn and trailhead is unmarked. Looks like some of the other camping spots, but bigger. Drive in as far as you can (about 75-100 yards) and park. Near the back you will see a 6 inch wide, 3 foot tall simple sign that says “Trail”. like this

The trail is real easy to follow, but just make sure you get on the right trail at the beginning (the one with the for-mentioned sign), as there are all kinds of crisscrossing trails near the parking area. After about 1/3 mile, it will drop down into the canyon. At the bottom, you will see a number of cairns. Take a look around to remember what it looks like for the return trip. Start hiking to your right down the canyon, and after about 20-25 minutes (don't quote me on that) you will come to a much wider area of the canyon. We first thought this was the place to go, but not quite yet. Go past this, and you will start to see more sheer walls ahead, on the North side of the canyon. Start looking up on the North side on the canyon for ruins. Fallen Roof Ruin will be the first one you come to, approximately ¼ mile past the wider area of the canyon. It’s about 70-80 feet above the canyon floor, but really an easy scramble on slickrock to get up to it. There you go!!

Looking back at my digi pics from then, it looks like we got there at 12:30 (this was April 19th), and left the ruins at about 3:30, so we were there a long time. It took us exactly 45 minutes to get back to the car from the ruins. Also, we had mostly cloudy skies the whole time, so hard to tell you what time is best on a sunny day. Of course, I’m real happy with my results on a cloudy day!

By the way, if you continue east on Cigarette Springs road for about another 7-8 miles, you will come to the end of the road, and a great camp spot, over looking the beginning of another canyon, and a trickle of a spring. Very cool spot where we camped! Also, there are plenty of other pull offs to camp in along the road before that.

Fallen Roof Ruin
The beginning of the trail into Road Canyon, home of Fallen Roof Ruin
GPS Coordinates:

009: trailhead parking lot

010: top of canyon

011: bottom of canyon where you just dropped in

012: wider area of canyon mentioned in text I sent

013: a small detour we took, just disregard

014: Fallen Roof Ruin

Mule Canyon

Ruins known as Fire Roof Ruins, or sometimes Three Room Ruins.

The best description I've found for this hike is Robert Hitchman's Photo America write up.

Also, this book is a great collection of location information: Photographing the Southwest - Volume 1

Inside Mule Canyon, just below the Flame Roof Ruins. Standing where I took this image, if you turn and look up 90 degrees to the left, the ruins are just up the slope. As you are hiking in, when you see this over hang from the other side, you'll know you are close.