The northern portions of this road pass through the White Cliffs area of the Grand Staircase, and several steep and narrow canyons are trenched into these terraces. Rough hiking trails explore these slot canyons.
The Willis Creek Narrows trailhead is nine miles south of Cannonville along Skutumpah Road. The relatively easy trail follows a small stream as it etches a deep and narrow gorge through the Navajo sandstone. From the parking area, where Skutumpah Road crosses Willis Wash, walk downstream along the wash.
Follow the streambed, which quickly descends between slickrock walls. The canyon is at times no more than 6-10 feet across, while the walls rise up 200-300 feet. The trail follows the (usually dry) streambed through the canyon for nearly 2.5 miles. To return, backtrack up the canyon.
Approximately 1.5 miles farther south on Skutumpah Road, a narrow bridge vaults over Bull Valley Gorge. Like the Willis Creek Narrows, this is a steep and narrow cleft in the slickrock; however, scrambling along the canyon bottom is a greater challenge, part of the reward for which is viewing a wrecked automobile wedged between the canyon walls.
From the bridge, walk upstream along a faint trail on the north side of the crevice until the walls are low enough to scramble down. From here, the canyon deepens quickly, and you'll have to negotiate several dry falls along the way (a rope will come in handy).
When you reach the area below the bridge, look up to see a 1950s-model pickup truck trapped between the canyon walls. Three men died in this 1954 mishap; their bodies were recovered, but the pickup was left in place. The canyon continues another mile from this point; there is no loop trail out of the canyon, so turn back when you've seen enough.
Twenty miles south of Cannonville, Skutumpah Road crosses Lick Wash, from which trails lead downstream into slot canyons to a remote arroyo (dry river bed) surrounded by rock-topped mesas. One of these lofty perches contains a preserve of now-rare native grasses. Although this area can be reached on a day hike, this is also a good place to base a multiday camping trip.
The trail starts just below the road crossing on Lick Wash and follows the usually dry streambed as it plunges down into a narrow slot canyon. The canyon bottom is mostly level and easy to hike. After one mile, the canyon begins to widen, and after four miles Lick Wash joins Park Wash, a larger desert canyon.
Looming above this canyon junction are mesas topped with deep sandstone terraces that are part of the White Cliffs of the Grand Staircase. Rising to the east is No Mans Mesa, skirted on all sides by steep-sided cliffs. The 1,788 acres atop the mesa were grazed by goats for six months in the 1920s, but before or since has never been grazed by herbivores.
This pristine grassland is protected by the BLM as an Area of Critical Environmental Concern. Hardy hikers can scramble up a steep trail—used by the aforementioned goats—to visit this wilderness preserve. The ascent of No Mans Mesa is best considered an overnight trip from the Lick Wash trailhead.