Saturday, February 4, 2017
On Saturday I was up early to meet Marty in Moab so we could spend the day exploring the area surrounding Flat Pass along Mill Creek and the Steelbender Trail. I was hoping to access a large petroglyph panel high on the wall of Mill Creek Canyon from above. I managed to time my drive to Moab perfectly so that I was driving through the Richardson Amphitheater near Castle Valley as the sun came up for the day. Of course, I stopped and took a few photos of the nice sunrise.
It’s always nice to drive through the Richardson Amphitheater along the Colorado River at sunrise.
Sister Superior Sunrise
Morning sunlight strikes the Priest and Nuns with Castle Rock poking out on the right side.
The Porcupine Rim
After meeting up with Marty in town and topping off the fuel tank in my Jeep we headed out past Ken’s Lake to Flat Pass. We stopped to check out a few rock art sites along the road and then Marty found a place to leave his Jeep and rode with me as we followed the Steelbender Trail for a few miles. This trail was a bit more difficult than I expected so we didn’t really make great time. It might have been just as fast to hike the road, but it’s been a while since I drove a tough trail in my Jeep, so it was good practice. After parking my Jeep along the trail we hiked to the rim of Mill Creek Canyon to see if we could access the petroglyph panel from above. Unfortunately, we would not be able to find a way down to the panel.
The first panel of petroglyphs we would visit when we got into Mill Creek Canyon.
Unfortunately, these old Barrier Canyon Style pictographs are severely damaged.
Palisade, Colo. 1909
A few more faint petroglyphs.
I liked this interesting petroglyph that was high above.
Starting the climb out of Mill Creek up the Steelbender Trail.
The ADVENTR Jeep showing off on the trail.
After returning to Mill Creek Canyon we spent the rest of the late afternoon exploring in the general vicinity of Flat Pass. Some very nice clouds had moved into the sky and the warm sunlight on the surround sandstone was very nice.
We stopped to see a few more petroglyphs after returning from the Steelbender Trail.
One big stick-figure and a bunch of smaller ones.
Marty in Mill Creek Canyon.
Sandstone domes along Mill Creek.
Mill Creek Arch
My Jeep parked at Flat Pass.
The view toward South Mesa from Flat Pass.
I spent a little time photographing this nice caprock hoodoo.
I finally made some time to visit Moab’s Faux Falls before heading back to town for dinner. Plus, I got to test out the new Ice 10 Stop ND Filter that Diane got me for Christmas. I think it worked pretty well…
The clouds were very beautiful this evening.
South Mountain over red mountains of sandstone.
A close look at a snow-covered Mount Tukuhnikivatz in the clouds.
Mount Tukuhnikivatz over red rocks.
Even though I wasn’t able to reach the petroglyph panel I wanted to from above, we still had a great day of exploring! The weather was perfect, the roads and trails were dry, and we didn’t see another person or vehicle all day on the trail!