Monthly Archives: April 2014

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Since I never made it to Flume Creek Canyon yesterday, Diane and I decided to hike it this afternoon together. I wasn’t expecting too much from this hike, but it turned out to be a really beautiful and fun hike. Had we only stayed on the main trail it would have been just another desert hike, but since we decided to get off the main trail and hike in the bottom of the canyon it was much more enjoyable. Getting off the main trail and into the bottom of the wash was a great choice because there were some cool narrows to hike though and the canyon eventually boxed up at the end under an impressive dry waterfall. Once we reached the end we had to backtrack a little way, but then we had fun climbing up a steep route out of the canyon to join up with the main trail again.

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Saturday, April 26, 2014

I was originally planning to hike Flume Canyon near Fruita this morning when I left my house shortly after sunrise, but the unusual clouds in the sky and beautiful light in the canyons of the northern end of the Uncompahgre Plateau made me change my mind. Instead, I drove up into the Colorado National Monument and spent the morning taking photos from the overlooks along Rim Rock Drive.

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Monday, April 21, 2014

After hiking up the Fruita Dugway just over a week ago and being treated to some nice views down into Kodels Canyon for part of the way, I decided that I wanted to check out that canyon soon. I wasn’t expecting much on this short hike after work, but there were a lot of great sights in this short canyon at the very western edge of the Colorado National Monument. My understanding is that this canyon is named after an old prospector who had a cabin near the mouth of the canyon. He apparently dug the mine that is located up the canyon a short way and worked the claim for at least 30 years until around 1930.

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Easter | Sunday, April 20, 2014

My original plan for Easter Sunday was to hike and explore Sieber Canyon. Unfortunately, this road closed sign across Bs Road changed those plans when I tried to reach the trailhead first thing in the morning.

Change of Plans by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

With no backup plan I decided to drive over to the upper Liberty Cap trailhead, since it was not too far away, to finally hike to Otto’s Bathtub on Monument Mesa. When I arrived at the parking lot there was only one other vehicle parked there.  I wouldn’t see anyone else on the trail all day until I was almost back to my Jeep, which is when I passed many groups of hikers heading towards Liberty Cap. When I returned to the parking lot it was completely full. I was glad I got my usual early start and had plenty of solitude on the hike. The upper Liberty Cap trail follows an old closed road and is not my favorite place to hike, but the scenery around Otto’s Bathtub made up for the first part of the hike. This is an area I am definitely going to have to return to in better light. While this area is referred to as Otto’s Bathtub, in my opinion the scenery and arches around here are a much better reason to visit than seeing just that one feature.

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Friday & Saturday, April 18-19, 2014

Since I have a three night backpacking trip coming up at the beginning of May and I never did get out on a backpacking trip last year, I wanted to get in a quick overnight trip this month. I have also wanted to camp in the backcountry of the Colorado National Monument and hike the full length of No Thoroughfare Canyon. I decided to take care of all three of these goals with an overnight backpacking trip through No Thoroughfare Canyon with my friend Jackson. We had a hard time figuring out a good night for this trip where our schedules matched up, and in the end it worked out best for us to leave after work on Friday and get off the trail on Saturday afternoon. I headed up to the Visitor’s Center on Thursday afternoon during my lunch break to get a backcountry permit for our trip. It was my first time getting one of those permits and the process was quick and easy. On Friday we watched the weather forecast all day hoping for an improvement, but it pretty much remained the same with a 50% chance of rain overnight and into Saturday morning. We decided to deal with the possibly of rain and went anyways. We left after work on Friday and parked my Jeep at the Devil’s Kitchen Picnic Area. Diane was nice enough to drive us up to the upper trailhead near Glade Park to drop us off so we wouldn’t have to worry about picking up a vehicle the next day.

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