Ready for a hike?  We've got hundreds of well documented Arizona hikes.
This is the source for everything you need to know about Arizona Hiking.

Main menu

Cart Empty

You are here:

The Wave (Coyote Buttes North)

The Wave
Hiking to the Wave
Hiking to the Wave
Hiking to the Wave
Hiking to the Wave
The Wave
Hiking to the Wave
The Wave
The Wave


How to Get There
This hike is located in the North East corner of Arizona, with trail access along the southern Utah border between Page, AZ and Kanab, UT.

WIRE PASS TRAILHEAD: From Flagstaff, take US Highway 89 toward Page, AZ. Take HWY 89 west out of Page, AZ for 35 miles. Just after milepost 26, turn left onto a dirt road (House Rock Valley Road). The trailhead is about six miles down this road. There is no water at the trailhead. High clearance vehicle needed. This road is impassible after a rain.
Paria River
Grand Canyon and Marble Canyon area

Hike details

5.20 [Miles] Total
Hike Distance- Details
The out and back distance to the Wave formation is about 5.2 miles.
It took us about 3.5 hours with about 30 minutes to explore the Wave formation
Elevation Change
500 Total gain/loss [Feet]
Elevation Details
about 500 ft elevation change
Hike Trail Type
Out and Back


Best Season
  • March
  • April
  • September
  • October
Worst Season
  • January
  • February
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • December
Season Details
Spring is the best season for this hike. Good temperatures and low chance of rain.
Date Hike completed
May 26, 2023


Solitude Details
Although there are 64 other people that are awarded permits to hike, everyone starts at a different time so hikers get spread out. Expect to see about 20-30 other hikers.


Difficulty Rating
difficulty detail
This is a Moderate difficulty hike, primarily because of the route finding needed.


Be Aware of
route finding, permit required.

WARNING: Make sure you put the permit sticker in your car windshield before you head out... the fine is steep if you don't!

Hike to an iconic rock formation known as the Wave near Page, Arizona.

The Wave rock formation (also known as Coyote Gulch - North) has become an iconic destination, attracting worldwide visitors. After having visited this formation, it is easy to see why. Although there is a significant route finding challenge to complete this hike, the most difficult obstacle is to procure a permit from the BLM. Only 48 people are allowed to visit the Wave via the advanced lottery and an additional 16 people are allowed as a daily lottery. For details and to submit an application to the advanced lottery, visit the following website: It is very easy to see how important limiting visitation is to keeping this area pristine.

From the trailhead (shared with the hike to Wire Pass), follow the instructions provided with your permit. The BLM does not publish a map in an effort to make sure people honor the permitting system, so will respect that decision. One thing that did help us navigate was the GPS coordinates provided by the BLM. We entered these into a GPS device and it made route finding significantly easier. Even with the waypoints, route finding to the wave is a significant challenge. Much of the trail is on sandstone or slick rock that leaves no path.

This area is spectacular in its scenery. Surrounded by stark desert, multi colored sandstone walls, and miles of views, this hike is enjoyable all the way up to your destination. The Wave itself is outer-worldly, difficult to describe and near impossible for a photograph to do justice. Be sure to explore all around this area to enjoy all the different formations nearby.

Once you're finished with the Wave, backtrack along the same path. Consider also checking out Wire Pass, a nearly slot canyon with some short but impressive narrows.


Swap Start/End