BUTLER WASH RUIN, HOUSE ON FIRE, NATURAL BRIDGES NATIONAL MONUMENT
You will want to start early today! Enjoy a nice breakfast in your lodging as the sun rises, and bring the sandwiches and root beer for lunch, with plenty of water, and head out for an amazing day of hiking. You will first travel west on Highway 95 which starts 3 miles south of Blanding. You will continue to approx. mile marker 112 where you will see the BUTLER WASH RUIN sign. (There are more ruins if you park right there at the sign for another day). Enter the Butler Wash Ruin parking area. It is about a 1⁄2 mile hike to the overlook site. If you leave the overlook site and walk to the north you can cross a small
natural bridge and circle around until you are above and past the actual ruin cave. The ancient Anasazi steps carved in the sandstone descend down the cliff and into the cave. A trained eye can see the steps from the overlook site. It is a little dangerous so you can go at your own risk.
Your next stop will be at House on Fire Ruin. This is a much smaller ruin and not so amazing but at the right time of the morning the sun lights up the scaled ceiling in front of the ruins creating a spectacular show of color. You can see online many photos of House on Fire ruin. This is the last gravel road headed to the North before you get to Mule Canyon Ruins turnout. (Between mile marker 101 and 102) Go about a 1⁄2 mile on the gravel road to where you cross over the first canyon. Park and walk to the west, up the canyon about a mile. The ruin is about 30 feet above you off to your right. Just keep looking up to the right and you will see the scaled ceiling and the front of the ruins.
Natural Bridges National Monument is a grand place for hiking and you could spend multiple days just hiking here. For this trip we are taking you into the Monument to the Kachina Bridge. Continue west on Highway 95 past the Highway 261 turnoff and you will see the Natural Bridges road. Continue to the Visitor Center and then go to Kachina Bridge. You may want to stop at the other Bridge parking areas and walk out to the overlooks depending on your time schedule. At the Kachina Bridge you can hike down the trail to the bottom of the canyon and look around and up at the amazing natural wonder. Natural Bridges is listed in the top 15 sites in the world for Night Sky viewing. If you are here in the evening or would like to plan to be here on a clear evening, you will be amazed at the Night Sky.