The Wave Tour
From $99 Per Person
Hiking into the North Coyote Buttes Area, which contains the famous "Wave" formation, is one of the most sought-after experiences of visitors to Kanab from around the world. We love to bring clients to this incredible structure, which dates back to the Jurassic Period, when dinosaurs roamed the earth.
Sand dunes, once blown about by winds, have been frozen in time, capturing gorgeous layers of color and texture. To walk up to the entrance of the Wave is a magical experience that can only be felt when present. Just like being at a live concert is so much better than hearing a recording, visiting the Wave surpasses even the most beautiful photographs of it.
The Wave is protected by our local laws, and for good reason. Out of respect for the structure and also for those who visit, the BLM limits visitors to the area. Only 20 permits are issued each day to hikers, and those are offered online and in person. In order to obtain a permit, you must win a lottery, and the competition for permits gets stiffer every year.
To apply for permits online, you will need to go to this site. Applications are entered 4 months in advance. If you enter later in the month, you will be able to see which days have the most applications entered already, thereby giving you the advantage of choosing days that have fewer applicants (if you have that luxury in scheduling). When entering the online lottery, if you plan on using our services as guides, you would choose Wire Pass as the Trailhead. For the license plate number, enter Kanab Tour Company. Note that we operate Monday through Saturday. You do not need to obtain a permit for your guide. We carry our own guiding permissions from the BLM.
If you are lucky and win a permit, it will be mailed to you at the address on your application. You can call us and schedule a tour of the area.
In Person Lottery
Perhaps one of the most exciting recurring events is the in person lottery, which is held at the BLM Visitors Center in Kanab. Here, crowds from 50-250 people gather every morning during the high season (5 days/week during the slower season) to put their names into the draw for 10 permits. The room is dead quiet as everyone awaits their fate. Each application is assigned a number, and old-fashioned wooden BINGO balls are placed into a roller cage representing each number. The BLM employee will roll the cage around until a ball drops. They will announce the number, and there will generally be cheers from somewhere in the room. Occasionally more than 10 permits are issued in this system (for example, if there is one permit remaining to be drawn, they will allow two people in a group to take it because they do not encourage lone hiking to the Wave). Once all 10 permits have been given out, the unlucky ones leave, usually with a sad face. (Contact us if you are one of the sad ones! We can always find something for you to do.)
BUT, the lucky ones are given bright fluorescent green permits to attach to their backpacks, and they rejoice! They are allowed to hike North Coyote Buttes on the following day. If you are a lucky winner, in this case, we would love to guide you. Simply call us and check our availability. We are often ready to go to the Wave on short notice.
Our Wave tour consists of the following:
Transport in a 4WD vehicle
Guided hiking to and from the Wave structure, as well as surrounding areas (approximately 8 miles)
Knowledge of the history, geology, plant and wildlife in the area, provided by your guide
Visits to extra sites, provided you are able to hike to them, such as: The Second Wave, Fatali's Boneyard, Cheeseburger Rock, Dinosaur Tracks, and the Neon Buttes. Our guides know several routes to and from the Wave and will plan a trip that suits your abilities and interests. There is so much to see in the area surrounding the Wave, sometimes we have clients return to the area to get a second chance at photographing the beautiful sights adjacent to the famous one.
Ensuring of safety at all times.
Group Pricing Rates:
1 hiker: $350
2 hikers: $350
3 hikers: $450
5 hikers: $500
6 hikers: $594
Prices are subject to Utah Sales Tax.
If you would like to add on the experience of spending time in a beautiful slot canyon on the way back to the vehicle, that can be arranged. The cost for this Wire Pass Slot add-on is $150 for the group. This is definitely worth it and caps off the day nicely.
Guests on our Wave Tour are expected to pack their own water and lunch. We suggest carrying 3/4 gallon of water, on average, to keep safe hydration levels (we adjust our suggestion depending on the time of year).
We guide to The Wave year round. It is easier to obtain permits during the Winter, and we often have amazing experiences during those months. There have been a few occasions when we needed to cancel a hike due to poor visibility or road conditions. We do everything we can to get you there, however, as we know it is fulfilling a dream for many.