The Slot, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

The Slot is a fun, short slot canyon hike in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park. How to get to the trailhead is a bit obscure as if the park didn’t want too many people there.

In fact there’s no sign on the highway indicating where it locates and how to get there. Once you arrived at the trailhead, you were basically at a canyon rim looking down on the trail but it wasn’t clear how to get down. There was a small sign simply said “The Slot” pointing to the right. On the right side of the parking lot as you face the slot canyon, there were two trails leading away from the parking lot. In our group of four, we were debating which one we should take. I’ve read from different websites that many people had a similar problem of spotting the trail down to the canyon.

As it turned out either trail is fine. You just need to keep in mind where the canyon is and to not hike away from it. There was another sign, I think, said “Trail” pointing to your left very shortly afterward. Follow it down to the canyon. Be sure to take note of where you came down so that you know where to head back up when you return.

Then the fun began. We walked down the slot canyon made up mostly of clay, loose rocks and gravels. The canyon soon became narrower and the temperature was cooler, perfect for a hot day.

View from the beginning section of the Slot. Looking up and you can see Ren, our truck, parked at the top.
Walking through the slot canyon
It wasn’t that narrow. Just my backpack got stuck. 😄
I’m sure this won’t collapse while we are under it. We couldn’t be THAT unlucky. Nevertheless, we walked through it very quickly.
Then the canyon started widening
Beautiful canyon walls
Admiring the cool slot canyon
The view of the other end of the Slot looking back from where we came
Phacelia and desert lily on the slope of the hill at the end of the Slot

You could make this a loop hike by continuing down a wash/road. There is supposed to be a trail on the left taking you up and back to the parking lot. We didn’t have a map with us, so we returned the way we came, and got to enjoy the Slot a second time.

You can find more information about the Slot hike from to help with your trip planning.

8 thoughts on “The Slot, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

  1. How fun to find a slot canyon hike in California! It reminds me of UT hikes–love those narrow walls. I had to laugh at your caption, “we couldn’t be THAT unlucky;” that’s the classic first line in all of those “I Should’ve Died, But I Didn’t” TV shows, lol! Love hikespeak, too; it’s really helped with planning different hikes.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It’s a lot of fun. The more we traveled in California, the more we realized that California’s natural landscapes are incredibly diverse. We love spending time traveling here.

      Liked by 1 person

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