Hiking Southern Utah: Tuacahn Split

Tuacahn Split is a fun but strenuous hike located near Tuacahn Center for the Arts in Ivins, Utah. It takes you through a maze of sandstone that leads up above Snow Canyon State Park. Throughout the hike you will see the breathtaking views of red sandstone and black lava rock that are so familiar to everyone in the St. George surrounding area.

The trail is about three miles long with an elevation gain of about 1,200 ft. Most of the trail is unmarked, and many areas will require a bit of scrambling and climbing. Hikers will need to make sure they have the strength to pull themselves up over ledges as well as lower themselves down. This is not a hike for children or dogs, and should only be taken on by experienced hikers, preferably with a guide.

The trail begins just outside of the Tuacahn parking lot. As you ascend the red sandstone mountain there will be one spot where you must swing your body up and over a boulder. It can be scary, but if you can make this first hurdle you can handle any of the other heights on the trail.

Looking back you’ll see a beautiful view of Tuacahn and the surrounding area, and will be able to hear the comings and goings of Tuacahn High School. The hike continues in a series of ‘staircases’ as you make your way further and further upward. One staircase in particular is extremely steep and will look near impossible when you are at the bottom.

Make sure you look back after completing each staircase because the views are spectacular. After the staircases are the splits. You will need to lower yourself into narrow crevices in the rock. There are two of these, but the second is definitely narrower than the first. Hiking guides often say the hike gets its name because hikers will split their pants as they stem down the crevices.

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