This trail follows the South Wash, a major wash to the south of the Grafton Cemetery. This wash receives runoff from the Smithsonian Butte, and the two mesa’s on each side of the South Wash, Wire Mesa and Grafton Mesa.
This trail up the wash and return is about 5.5 miles in length and is a moderate 4 hour walk. There are some very scenic sections along the trail.
Overall rating = moderate
Distance: 5.5 miles total – moderate
Elevation gain: ~500 feet with many ups and downs on the route – moderate
Terrain: Dirt, rocks, brush, water, and mud – moderate
Exposure: Traverse under loose rocks above in places – moderate
To see the trail rating system used here see Trail Rating System
Take SR9 to Rockville, Utah. Travel south across the Grafton Bridge on Bridge Road. Turn right on the paved Grafton Road and drive 3 miles west to the Grafton Cemetery. Turn into the Grafton Cemetery and follow the dirt track south a short distance to the parking area for the wash.
The last half of the Grafton road is very rough and can be impassable when wet.
The trail follows the wash for 2.7 miles to the head of the wash.
At its lower end, the wash is fairly wide and open and free of major obstructions. At about the 1 mile point the wash becomes somewhat narrower and can be somewhat muddy but most of these spots can be traversed along animal trails along the side of the wash. At about 1.5 miles the wash travels through an area of moderately high rock canyons. Beyond this the wash becomes drier with some minor rock scrambling.
There are several runoffs into the upper portion of the South Wash. The major one drops over a high box canyon into the wash. One of the lesser runoffs before reaching this point looks as if it could be climbed to get out the top end to reach the Smithsonian Butte Road which runs back down into Grafton. It is reported elsewhere that this can be a treacherous climb of about 600 feet vertical rise.