Rock Garden

Sixtymile Canyon — The first sidecanyon upriver from the Little Colorado has a possible climbing route through the Redwall to connect with the Horsethief Trail. The bed goes up easily to a drop in the Muav. Climbing up a ravine in the south slope over big boulders gains much elevation to a track along the slope. This track might be a better way to go up than the bed. The Redwall break is west, directly in line with the bed. Travel along the riverbank on the Tapeats ledges upriver is easy. Above the Tapeats downriver is just about the worst there is in these parts; steep slopes and big limestone blocks make it a struggle. If the waterline is low enough, it’s easier along the bank.

The upper end of Sixtymile is a compact valley above the Redwall pourover. The two arms of the Butte Fault basin meet just after starting to carve into the upper part of the Redwall. The direct connection crossing Sixtymile on the Butte Fault is to cross between the upper arms above the Redwall. The drainage up to the saddle with East Fork Carbon is a gradual climb without any rough spots.

Routes — west riverbank route from Nankoweap to Little Colorado. A Redwall route from the river goes straight up the bed and continues up the fault in the west headwall. Nearby drainages upriver are Awatubi and Malgosa. Also see Horsethief Butte Fault — North to Awatubi, south to Carbon.

The ravine leading north to Awatubi Crest is a more difficult place to navigate. This drainage actually crosses the butte fault near the join to the north arm with pouroff fall and a basin pool accessible from below (significant quantity of doubtful-looking water here), but not passable from above. The Horsethief Trail evidently followed the alternate line west of the main ravine, but we lost the track following the bed down from the saddle and had to climb up and around (west) to make a bypass.

1994 April - Riverbank to Muav exploration. Camp 3 on Tanner to Saddle Mountain.

1998 May - Site of the "Sixtymile Breakdown" on Bright Angel to Saddle Mountain or North Rim Passage trip.

2007 April - Turnaround dayhike from Carbon Butte Fault, just reaching where the arms join; day 6 with river crossing from Lipan Point. There is a really fine shady juniper stop about halfway up the south ravine to the saddle.

2007 October - Camp 4 in the north fork bed at Butte Fault Crossing, and we still have enough water to make Lava Creek tomorrow.


Catalog of Places - Trips - Routes - Notes