The Candy Cliffs of Yant Flat is one place where words and photos just really do not suffice. This place has mind-blowing geology, incredible views, otherworldly landscapes, and some of the great desert scenes of Utah. The dirt road is a bit rugged and requires a four-wheel drive vehicle with higher clearance, which helps keep this relatively unknown area less crowded. It is relatively close to St. George, where most crowds head to nearby Zion National Park and Snow Canyon State Park. Much easier to access than the famous Wave of Arizona or the White Pocket of Utah, Yant Flat is a very large area that was hand crafted by Mother Nature during one of her more creative periods. This is the kind of place that needs multiple visits.
Navajo sandstone dominates the first section you come across after hiking 1.5 miles on the trail. You could easily spend an hour or two in this one spot, but you will find out that it is only one portion of the greater area known as the Candy Cliffs. The views begin right where the flats end, and you can look down into Cottonwood Canyon and the city of St. George beyond it. Not only is the geology spectacular, but the views are stunning as well. You can see the white cliffs of Zion, Sand Hollow Reservoir, the city lights of St. George, and even Signal Peak to the north. If possible, come here to watch the sunset and hike the easy trail back with a headlamp.
The trail that takes you to the Candy Cliffs is known as Anna's View Point Trail. It is a 1.5-mile trail each way with only a small amount of elevation gain. It is a sandy trail with occasional bedrock that has a well marked trailhead but no marking at the end. The terrain can get very steep in the first section as you head down rolling hill. Luckily the slickrock is actually very sticky, so you can go up and down with some athleticism, but many younger and older people just get the views from above. Head east from the end of the trail to see the other zones. Much of the area is a relatively safe place to visit, but there are sheer drops off of many of the cliffs.
The road you come in on is called Danish Ranch Road, or FR-031, and you can access the area from St. George or the town of Leeds; each is a beautiful drive with great views. The weather can significantly change road conditions, so only travel when conditions are fully dry. There are some dangerous drop-offs with no guard rails, so there is no point heading here in inclement weather. Apart from that, bring lots of water on this hike and try your best to stay away on hot summer days.
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