The Water Pockets is a stunning area with lots of brainrock, fins, tepees, swirls, and interesting features. It's rarely visited, so you'll come away with many unique images. In fact, we've never seen anyone else out here. Best of all, no permits are required! The closest areas are a moderate 4-mile round trip hike. If you're feeling up to it, we can visit some of the further areas but this involves some strenuous descending/ascending. This is primarily an afternoon/sunset location and if there's nice clouds, we'll might get some sweet sunset color reflecting the pools of water. For additional info, please see the tabs below. Contact Us with any questions or concerns.
Tour Length: 8-9 hours
Drive Time: One hour from Kanab with 45 mins on pavement and 15 mins on rough roads. If it has been raining, we may not be able to access this location and we’ll have to go somewhere else.
Time Spent on Location: Approx 6 hours with around 2 hours of hiking time.
Tour Departure Time: Please see the time listed on your booking since the times vary throughout the year. Please arrive around 10 mins early to load your gear and finish the check-in process. The return time is approximately 8-9 hours after the departure time. Note that we operate on Utah time which is one hour ahead of Las Vegas. During the months of Daylight Savings (approx mid-March through early Nov), Utah is also one hour ahead of Arizona. Please take this into consideration if traveling from out of state.
Tour Pricing: Please click on the Book Your Tour button for the latest pricing. Note that most of our tours require a 2-person minimum. Single individuals can always go, but may need to pay the 2-person rate if nobody else decides to join.
Tour Meetup Location: You will meet at our home in Kanab the day of your tour. Address will be provided once the tour is booked. This is a safe place to park your vehicle. If you like, you can leave any valuables inside the house. Once you arrive, we’ll ask you to load your gear and sign a liability release waiver. If you haven’t yet paid in full, we’ll take the remaining payment via cash or credit card. Contact us if you are unable to get to the meet-up spot and we’ll make alternate arrangements. Las Vegas is the closest major airport to Kanab. There is no public transportation to Kanab, so you’ll need your own rental car or private vehicle. We recommend that you stay in a hotel in Kanab the evening of your tour. There are many good hotels in the area like Hampton Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Comfort Inn & Suites, and the Canyons Botique.
Tour Meetup Outside of Kanab: We occasionally get requests from folks coming from Page, AZ. Rather than meet in Kanab, we can meet you at the intersection of Highway 89 and House Rock Valley Road. Turn south onto House Rock Valley Road and park in the parking area at the bottom of the hill. Expect at least a 45min drive from Page, AZ. GPS coordinates are 37.124451, -111.977108. Here is the link to Google Maps: https://goo.gl/1q1F85
If you want us to pick you up here, PLEASE CONTACT US AHEAD OF TIME TO MAKE ARRANGEMENTS. We will come by approx. 45-60 mins after the tour departure time (note that this is Utah Time, not Arizona Time). Look for the vehicle marked as Action Photo Tours.
Areas: There are two ways to access the Water Pockets. We will choose the best way given the current conditions and client fitness.
Permits: No permits are required for this area. If you want to get a good feel for Coyote Buttes but can’t land a permit, this is going to be one of your better options.
Weather Conditions: It’s difficult to access this area if it has been raining or snowing. In the event this happens, we may have to move the tour to an alternate location. This decision will be made the day of the outing based on the consensus of the group. Note that we cannot offer refunds due to weather unless we cannot go out at all. Don’t despise inclement weather – that is often when you get the most dramatic photos! Just make sure you dress and prepare adequately for the weather.
Hiking / Fitness: The closest areas a moderate 4-mile round trip hike. If you’re feeling up to it, we can visit some of the further areas but this involves some strenuous descending/ascending. You’ll be trudging through sand and over uneven rock. The hike can be hot and exposed during the summer months. Expect an hour of hiking time each way. All participants should ensure their fitness level is adequate for this trip.
Food/Water: We do not provide food on our outings. All participants should bring their own food/water for the hike. For water, you’ll need at least one gallon (4 liters) per person during the warmer months. Don’t underestimate how much water you’ll need out here! During the cooler months, 2 liters per person is adequate.
What to Wear: You should check the weather forecast prior to coming on the trip (search for Paria, UT on Weather.com). If it’s going to be hot, wear light-colored clothing and a hat. If the temperatures are cold, bring some warm layers and long pants. Don’t forget sunglasses and sunscreen. If it’s very cold and or windy, don’t forget a warm hat and some gloves. If rain or snow is in the forecast, bring a rain jacket. We recommend wearing sturdy footwear in Water Pockets due to the uneven terrain and sand.
Restroom Facilities: There are no restroom facilities around Water Pockets. If you need to use the restroom during the hike, we will have toilet paper and hand sanitizer available. You can dig a hole back behind a bush to do your business.
Cell Phones: Bring your cell phone along! They are great for capturing candid images. Plus, there are a few areas where you get cell signal here. There are USB ports in our vehicles so bring a charging cable if you need one.
Group Size: Our groups will never exceed 5 people per guide. We like to keep our photo tours small so we can give adequate individual attention. For those photographers that feel more independent, we will allow you to wander away from the group and explore on your own within reasonable limits.
Camera Gear: A wide angle zoom lens is most useful at the Water Pockets (equivalent 16-35 on a full-frame camera or 10-22mm on a crop sensor). There are opportunities for mid-range, telephoto, and macro shots so you can bring any of those lenses if you like – just ensure your pack isn’t too heavy. We recommend bringing a tripod to capture the best evening light. For filters, a circular polarizer can come in handy as long as it’s not a clear, blue-sky day. A neutral density filter can be nice to smooth out rough water or create long exposures for fast moving clouds. Don’t forget extra batteries, memory cards, and cleaning supplies. Please contact us if you’d like to rent any camera gear for your outing.
Night Photography: The Water Pockets are a great place for night photos. Contact us if this is something you might be interested in.
Safety: Our guides are trained in CPR/First-Aid. All 4WD vehicles are equipped with extraction equipment and a first-aid kit. We carry a satellite beacon with us in case of emergencies outside of cell range.
Cancellations: Please see our Terms and Conditions