Among the rules now enforced across the Cedar Mesa:You must have a backcountry permit to hike in Grand Gulch and all other canyons on Cedar Mesa, including Fish, Owl, Slickhorn, Road, Lime, Mule and McCloyd canyons.

Advance reservations are required for overnight camping from March 1 to June 15 and Sept. 2 to Oct. 31. These reservations are obtained by calling the Monticello BLM office at 435-587-1532. A small number of daily walk-in permits are available at the Grand Gulch ranger station for groups of fewer than eight individuals.

Overnight permits cost $8 per person, and day-use permits are $2 per person, although a day-use pass good for seven days is available for $5 per person. Cash is not accepted, only checks and credit cards.

Group size is limited to no more than 12 people.

No fires are allowed in the canyons. In other words, you must carry in a backpack stove for cooking or warmth. Fires are allowed on the mesa top in areas designated for vehicle camping.

There are no designated camps in the canyon bottoms, but you must camp at least 100 feet from a water source. Camping, sleeping, cooking or lighting fires inside the ruins are a huge taboo.

Camping within one mile of the San Juan River is prohibited in Slickhorn and Grand Gulch. It is also banned at Split Level Ruin and the surrounding bench.

Horses are allowed, but there are numerous restrictions about where they can go. Advanced reservations are required, no exceptions. Check with the BLM in Monticello for details.

Dogs are allowed in all canyons except Grand Gulch below Collins Canyon or in Slickhorn. Dogs must be leashed and they are not allowed in any of the ruins or water sources.

Disposal of human waste is not permitted within 200 feet of a water source. Waste must be deposited in holes 6 inches deep and covered with soil. Used toilet paper must be packed out (remember, fires are not allowed).

It is against the law to use climbing equipment to access archaeological sites.

Although not a regulation, the BLM reminds visitors that all water in the springs and pools must be filtered, treated or boiled before drinking. Otherwise, your memories of Grand Gulch will not be pleasant ones.