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Hells Canyon Wilderness

General Maps Contacts Area Management Wilderness Laws


The United States Congress designated the Hells Canyon Wilderness (map) in 1990 and it now has a total of 9,951 acres. All of this wilderness is located in Arizona and is managed by the Bureau of Land Management.


A scenic portion of the Hieroglyphic Mountain Range, Hells Canyon Wilderness is home to numerous peaks which encircle and isolate Burro Flats from the rest of the world. These peaks rise from 1,877 to 3,597 feet. Hells Canyon is further isolated by private land on its southern, eastern, and northern boundaries. The most prominent of the peaks are Garfias Mountain at 3,381 feet and Hellgate Mountain at 3,339 feet. Several cliffs on the mountains attract climbers, and the canyons make for relatively easy hiking. There is a total of 10 miles of trail in the Wilderness and easily accessible, primitive camping sites are plentiful.

Hells Canyon Wilderness receives approximately 8 inches of rainfall each year and average annual temperatures range from 35 degrees Fahrenheit in winter to 100 degrees in summer. Most of this land is covered by Sonoran Desert vegetation: saguaro, paloverde, barrel cactus, ocotillo, and desert grasses. Common wildlife includes mountain lions, bobcats, javalina, and other smaller mammals, rattlesnakes, a variety of other non-venomous snakes and the venomous gila monster.

Planning to Visit the Hells Canyon Wilderness?

Leave No Trace

How to follow the seven standard Leave No Trace principles differs in different parts of the country (desert vs. Rocky Mountains). Click on any of the principles listed below to learn more about how they apply in the Hells Canyon Wilderness.
  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare
  2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces
  3. Dispose of Waste Properly
  4. Leave What You Find
  5. Minimize Campfire Impacts
  6. Respect Wildlife
  7. Be Considerate of Other Visitors
For more information on Leave No Trace, Visit the Leave No Trace, Inc. website.

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