Titanothere Canyon contains wide open spaces and grand vistas of high mountain peaks seen while passing around Thimble Peak and directly by Lostman Spring. Difficulties encountered on the hike include needing HC (high clearance) to reach the starting point for the hike and making arrangements for a trailhead drop-off if you wish to do this as a one-way hike. A Google Earth map of the hiking route (turned to the west for better viewing) can be found by clicking on the button above. GPS coordinates for the canyon mouth are 36° 49.617'N, 117° 1.246'W. GPS coordinates for Lostman Spring are 36° 47.038'N, 117° 1.900'W.
Titanothere Canyon is the southernmost officially named canyon in the Grapevine Mountains. It starts out near Titus Canyon Road and flows south and then southwest as it drains toward Scotty's Castle Road. The canyon is named for the Titanothere dinosaur, remains of which were discovered within the canyon and once put on display at the Furnace Creek Visitor Center. When we first decided to add Titanothere Canyon to our Fall trip itinerary in 2008, we were planning to do it as a 12 mile one-way hike to Scotty's Castle Road. However, an NPS staff member suggested that it was not the best idea because the terrain past Lostman Spring was considered to be fairly brutal to hike on. At the same time, our planned vehicle shuttle to carry out a one-way hike fell through. Thus, we decided to do the hike as a 4.3 mile each way (or 8.6 mile round-trip) journey. Early one morning, we got up and drove through Titus Canyon Road to the point just before you begin climbing up to Red Pass. We parked there and dropped into the main wash of Titanothere Canyon. The hike was straightforward as we simply continued walking down canyon, all the while enjoying the view of a variety of majestic mountains and peaks. The scenery was ever changing, but this was not canyon hiking like we were used to, because our surroundings were on an epic scale instead of a small scale. The part I enjoyed most about this hike was once we reached the area which the guidebook I was using labeled as The Neck, just under four miles from the starting point. We continued on through the brief stretch of narrows at The Neck and ended our hike at the cottonwood and mesquite trees of Lostman Spring. When we were driving home from our trip about one week later, I asked Daria which hike she enjoyed most on the trip. Her answer caught me by surprise, as she said Titanothere Canyon. Her reason was that she enjoyed the large scale of the mountains we walked by during the journey. It may not have been my favorite, but like Daria, I agree that Titanothere Canyon is a worthwhile place to visit. It's hard to top the majestic views of the front face of Thimble Peak towering about the canyon. Our hike took place on November 25, 2008.
Many more photographs taken during our visit are available for viewing for this destination. To see all of them, choose one of the two options presented below. The two options are Slideshow viewing and Trip Report viewing. The Slideshow option allows for viewing larger images with an autoplay option and a full screen option (available on most browsers). This option works very well for large computer screens and tablets. The Trip Report option allows for viewing smaller pictures in a standard scroll-down format and enlarging of any panoramic photos taken during our visit. Click on the option of your choice to view all of our photos from this destination. The Slideshow format opens in a new browser window and the Trip Report format uses the same browser window for viewing.
TRIP REPORT FORMAT