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Funeral Slot Canyon

Intermediate
 4.5 (2)

A hike to possibly the longest, narrowest, and most accessible slot canyon in Death Valley.


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Map Key

3.7

Miles

5.9

KM

Point to Point

1,254' 382 m

High

-79' -24 m

Low

1,348' 411 m

Up

15' 5 m

Down

7%

Avg Grade (4°)

26%

Max Grade (15°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Geological Significance

This trail is in Death Valley National Park and an entry fee is required. The informal trailhead for this hike is at or near the day use area in the Texas Springs Campground. Do not park in any of the campsites. There are toilets and water at the campground, which is closed during the summer months.

Need to Know

There is no formal trailhead for this hike but you can start from the day use area in the Texas Springs Campground. There isn't room there for more than 2-3 vehicles but there's a little more parking at a wide spot along the road about 200 feet to the northwest. The best time to do this hike is between November and April, as it's too hot to do during the summer months. The campground is also closed during those months, forcing you to start from Highway 190 and add 1.4 HOT miles to the hike.

Description

From the day use area, hike to the wash immediately to the north. During the winter months, you'll intersect a horse trail (for horse rides from the stables at Furnace Creek Ranch) that you can follow for a mile up the wash. The horse trail starts returning to the stables at a large yellow mound. Leave the trail here and continue cross-country up the middle of the wash. Relieve the tedium of marching up a sandy wash with the big views out over Death Valley and of Telescope Peak.

From the yellow mound, it's about a mile up the wash to the mouth of the canyon. You're now 2.5 miles from the campground and the canyon walls are finally starting to narrow. There are some nice cliffs and narrows along here but it's not until you reach a fork in the main canyon 3.5 miles from the campground and turn north into the right fork (marked with a large white boulder) that you reach the truly deep and narrow slots – a section some guidebooks call The Slot. You can hike for 0.4 miles up this amazingly narrow and convoluted slot canyon before reaching Tunnel Fall, a blockage that requires some Class 4 moves to surmount. Going past this point requires skills beyond simple hiking, so this is usually a turn-around point for this hike.

Contacts

Shared By:

Bruce Hope

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 2 votes

#8517

Overall
  4.5 from 2 votes
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Trail Rankings

#770

in California

#8,517

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613 Since Jan 27, 2020
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Photos

On the horse trail to Funeral Slot Canyon
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA
In The Slot of Funeral Slot Canyon
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA
In The Slot of Funeral Slot Canyon
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA
In The Slot of Funeral Slot Canyon
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA
In The Slot of Funeral Slot Canyon
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA
In places the canyon wall overhang Funeral Slot Canyon wash.
Jan 30, 2020 near Badwater, CA

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Jan 24, 2020
Bruce Hope