Dalton Wash Geocache
Just west of Zion National Park, Southwest Utah
Our First
Exploring Zion National Park
We love Zion National Park. Most people see the park from the bottom of the canyon and look up at the mountains and cliffs. However there are many other interesting places where you can view the beauty of Zion.
One of the best views is from the top of a mesa on BLM (Bureau of Land Management) land just west of the park. The photo on the left is a view from our cache.
From this mesa you can see mountains in all directions. The photo below shows the view to the northeast.
We decided to set two caches in this area. One on Smith Mesa and the other on Dalton Wash. The picture below was taken from the Dalton Wash cache site looking west. The red triangle marks the Smith Mesa Geocache area (The two caches are about 4.29 miles apart "as the crow flies").
Exploring Dalton Wash Road
Begin your adventure just east of Virgin, Utah on Highway 9. Between Mile Marker 19 and 20 look for an unmarked gravel road to the north. This intersection is at (N 37 11 870 W 113 09 890). After 1.8 miles on a gravel-dirt road, you'll reach the lower plateau and a Y intersection. Take the road to the left heading north. After another couple of miles you'll start up a narrow, steep road toward the top of the mesa (see photo to right). After a total of 4.2 miles from Highway 9, you'll be on top of a large mesa (N 37 13 631 W 113 06 902).


Mesa Top
If it's very muddy, you may want to park here and walk along the edge of the mesa rim to the cache. If it's dry and you have a high clearance vehicle, continue to the right and take the first dirt road to the right. You'll be able to park about 1/10th mile from the cache. You can park at N 37 13 469 W 113 06 987.

Examine the sandstone mesa rim here. You can see shiny and colorful agates, lots of petrified wood, lichen, many interesting catch pools, and wonderful views in all directions. You might kick up a jackrabbit or catch a glimpse of mule deer. Take along a picnic lunch, relax, and enjoy this beautiful hiking area.

Placing the Geocache
We found a great location where you can view mountains, cliffs, and mesas on all sides! Crater Hill is nearby to the east, inside the boundary of Zion National Park. We got out our GPS device and checked our location. The cache is at N 37 13 508 W 113 07 090.
The tan ammo box cache contains a log book, trashbags, and a camera, bookmarks, and a traveling "Where's George" dollar. The treasures include painted rocks and lots of other goodies.
Don't read the following section if you don't want to learn the cache location hints. We placed the cache close to a great viewpoint. It is located at the base of a pine tree near a rock overlook (photo right and below). In the picture on the right, you can see that the cache is covered with rocks and branches.
In the photo below, you can see the tall pine tree where the cache is located (red triangle). Annette is the small red dot below the red arrow.

Exploring the Geocache
We have a few suggestions if you want to visit the geocache.
1) Once you get done exploring the cache, there are lots of dirt roads to explore on the mesa top. There's also a hike into the east side of the National Park.
2) The hike would be best in the Fall or Spring. The road is impassible in wet or snowy winter weather and it's hot in the summer.
3) Be careful of the cryptobiotic soil crust. This is the dark crust that covers the delicate sandy soil. Please walk on the rocks, not on this soil.
4) Spend time to enjoy the lizards, cacti and other plant life on the mesa top. However watch out for rattlesnakes in the summer. Also, watch for sharp bushes and spiny cacti.
We hope you enjoy our fifth geocache! :-)
Go to the Dalton Wash page at geocaching.com for additional details and logs.
Geocache Update
As we were hiking on the top of Gooseberry Mesa, we could see the Zion River RV Resort (red arrow) and the Dalton Wash geocache location (red triangle). The photo below shows the view from Gooseberry Mesa, north toward Zion.
Our First

Created by
Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 4/03.