Stage 16 : Fish Creek -Comb Wash

National Geographic

Possible water source


The walking continues to be pleasant, although the drainage is soon choked with large quantities of tamarisk. It is highly advisable to follow the established trail through the brush in this area for several miles, since bushwhacking a new route through here would be a tough proposition. If you find yourself off-trail, it would be best to backtrack to the main trail, if possible. Look out for several ancient ruins in this area.


When we finally emerge from the brush, the enormous sandstone expanse of Comb Ridge is in our sights, and we quickly arrive at the Fish Creek trailhead on Comb Wash (S16P05).


Comb Ridge will dominate our views for the next hour, as we follow the good dirt road south along Comb Wash. Look out for some petroglyph panels on large isolated rocks near the road. Despite the presence of magnificent Comb Ridge alongside us, the long walk along the rock-hard dirt road is a bit of a chore.

Total Ascent
Total Descent
Min Elevation
Max Elevation
12.3 miles
Useful Locations

S15P15          N37° 25.797' W109° 44.982'      Owl Creek Fish Creek junction

S16P05          N37° 23.114' W109° 39.414'      Fish Creek trailhead

Water Availability
Fish Creek stream
Comb Wash stream
Water/Food Cache
Comb Wash Road (HC may be required if stream is flowing)
Elevation Profile

Fish Creek

Ruins and pictographs

Fish Creek

Comb Ridge


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