Ropes Trail hike and float Horseshoe Bend
The Ropes trail adventure hike and paddle is for the advanced DIY level enthusiast. It's very difficult to do both the hike and the full paddle in one day without a second vehicle. Due to the nature of logistics and time it is a very committed process. It's better suited to get a back haul from down at Lees Ferry and float back down. Unfortunately Paddle Express is not allowed to shuttle customers back to Page to get their vehicle. This is a blog about the experience. You can rent an inflatable paddle board and hike down to the river for the day and paddle around at the ropes trailhead back eddie that is a quarter mile loop and a campground spot on the river.
If you were to have two vehicles this is how the day adventure of descending the Ropes Trail and floating down river 15 miles past horseshoe bend. It can be executed in one very long day. From Page you drive 1 hour down to Lees Ferry, drop a vehicle. Head back to Page and go across the dam to the 2wd parking lot. Start hiking South over the ridge two and three quarter miles to the trailhead of the Ropes Trail. The trail can be challenging with soft sand and steep sandstone sections. This part should take about an hour. Front the beginning of the trailhead marker #1 is on the rim of the canyon and the descend down usually takes about 35 minutes. This part includes two somewhat challenging 2 story chimney type shoots where you have ropes to assist you down 3 stories worth of a vertical section. From there you have two beginner level repell ropes over 100' in length that help you go down a less vertical sloped section of the canyon down to the bottom levels as you are close to the water at that point up in the brush line.
You can find the water from there pretty easily with a few different trails through the campsite. At that location you are approximately 14.5 miles up river from Lees Ferry and at best a half days (6 hours) of paddling or more if you're floating. The river is class 1 in this stretch and has several slow moving sections. For those who fish it's a blue ribbon trout area and there's a bounty for the brown trout. Paddle Express provides very stable stand and cast fishing ISUPs for the river.