We headed southeast on Hwy 14, north on Hwy 89, and then west Hwy 12 past the entrance road to Bryce National Park, which we visited back in the fall of 2018. There was an off trail hike that Scott was interested in, so we spent a few nights boon docking just outside of Escalante.
We drove an hour from our campground along a dirt road to the trailhead for The Volcano/Cosmic Ashtray. It is a nine-mile out and back off trail offering scenic views and is rated as moderate. There is no shade and while the highest elevation gain is only 974’, the cross country hike is up and down and up and around and back up again. Our total elevation gain on this nine mile hike was 1,453’, and it took us just under six hours. Thankfully, there was a breeze most of the time under beautiful blue skies and temperatures in the mid 70’s.
We saw a jackrabbit on this hike, but we didn’t get a photo. They are just too quick. This is only the second time that we have seen a jackrabbit during our travels. If you have a chance to visit Escalante, you MUST stop at Escalante Outfitters for their pizza. Amazing!! Next stop, Capitol Reef National Park!