Dome Plateau & Yellow Cat Areas

Sunday, November, 1, 2009

Since I had changed my mind about camping in the San Rafael Swell the day before, my Sunday was now free to go exploring elsewhere. I didn’t want to get too far away from home, so I ended up heading out to the Dome Plateau & Yellow Cat areas north of Arches and Moab to explore some other trails and spurs in the area I had not been on yet. I started out heading towards Moab on UT 128, but turned off a few miles before the old Dewey Bridge onto Wood Road.

Early section of Wood Road
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Nice views over Yellow Jacket Canyon and Squaw Park
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After following a section of the Kokopelli Trail, I turned off and found some good dinosaur footprints….actually some of the best I have seen so far.

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This would have been a great view of the Fisher Towers and the La Sal Mountains if it wasn’t so hazy…
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Soon I connected up with the Yellow Cat Trail and passed by these cabins again.

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When I reached the Dome Plateau Road (aka The Highlands Road), I took a left and followed it to the end.

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On my way back from the overlook at the end, I took the short Winter Camp Ridge Trail to it’s end at the Arches National Park boundary. Delicate Arch was only a little over a mile away from there, it might be cool to try to hike to it from this direction sometime.

A lot of this road was sandy and fun to drive
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Jug Rock at the park boundary
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On my way back from the end of this spur, this caught my eye along the side of the road, so I had to stop and take a few photos…

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There is also a slot canyon just below the Winter Camp Ridge Trail that I need to head back to and checkout sometime. After heading back out to the Yellow Cat Trail, I continued on to follow the short spur that ended at an overlook of Salt Wash.

Loading up on some ore
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On my way to the overlook of Salt Wash….Arches National Park in the distance
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When I reached the Yellow Cat Trail yet again, I took a right onto the Salt Valley Gorge Road that would take me right into Thompson, where I could fill up on fuel again before heading home.

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Of course I didn’t just want to hop on the interstate to head back home, so I continued up to Sego Canyon and stopped at the pictographs.

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Then I took the Sagers Canyon Trail that follows along the Book Cliffs before descending to Sagers Canyon and heading back to the highway.

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I made it back home with plenty of daylight still to spare, even after the time change earlier in the day 🙂


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