What the heck is that? It's Cowboy Hat Tower! Cowboy Hat Tower is a unique rock structure in the Kodels Canyon and Devils Canyon area, south of Fruita, Colorado.
This is a popular spot for climbers to figure out a route and somehow raise themselves to the top.
One can easily hike to its base, as I did, via the Devils Canyon Trailhead.
It is approximately 1.2 miles (one way) and accessed via the trail named K1.
Directions: At exit 19 on Interstate 70 in
Fruita, turn south and travel through both circles. At 1.5 miles, turn right (west)
on Kings View Road, where there is also a sign for the McInnis Canyons recreation area.
Travel on Kings View Road to the Devils Canyon Trailhead, which is approximately two miles on the left.
I didn't see a cowboy hat from any angle, but I love the name anyway. It's remarkable this thing stands upright!
December 2, 2012 - I hiked on the dirt road and aimed for the smaller sub-canyons to the left of Devils Canyon.
This region has many trails and following the signs to K1 led me toward Cowboy Hat Tower.
Near 0.75 miles, I snapped this photo which shows the tower on the right. The trail descends into a gulch and the best route seems to be to
veer to the right and hike the easy orange rock ridge.
Coming closer ...
Arrival at Cowboy Hat Tower.
On this Sunday afternoon, I had the entire place to myself. I kept taking pictures of it from different angles, but you really need to see this in person.
TOP: With Cowboy Hat Tower beside me, the view of the gulch where K1 travels. I'm looking back at the direction I had come from.
SECOND: The gulch, facing upward. The K1 trail travels toward the mouth of Kodels Canyon.
At the time of this writing (12/12), paper maps are available at the trailhead
that mark the myriad trails in the area. However, as always, I recommend that you have your own detailed topographical map.
A pretty place and worth a visit.
A Climber Conquers Cowboy Hat Tower
My friend Brian is an avid climber who sent me this photo of him.
You can view reports of his many hiking and climbing adventures on