Category: Exploring

Fall Colors 2017 | No Thoroughfare Canyon
Monday, October 16, 2017

Beautiful desert fall colors in No Thoroughfare Canyon within the Colorado National Monument.

No, the big canyon located at the east end of the Colorado National Monument hasn’t had a name change, it’s still named No Thoroughfare Canyon. But since I went on a short hike into the canyon this evening to check on the fall colors of the cottonwoods, I thought it was a fun take on the name. I try to head up into the Colorado National Monument each October to catch the cottonwoods changing colors, and as you can see from the photos below they were coming along nicely!

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Southern Utah Wanderings | Cedar Mesa
Tuesday – Thursday, October 3-5, 2017

Long Front Ruin hidden in an alcove on Cedar Mesa within Bears Ears National Monument.

After spending Monday in the Abajo Mountains and the previous weekend in the northern section of The Bears Ears, it was time to head over to Cedar Mesa so we could spend then next couple of days exploring some new areas of this part of The Bears Ears searching for new ruins and rock art sites. Here are a few photos from the remainder of our trip…

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Southern Utah Wanderings | Fall Colors 2017
Monday, October 2, 2017

Early morning alpenglow on South Peak (11,122) in the Abajo Mountains from our campsite.

After spending the weekend in the northern section of Bears Ears National Monument and Canyonlands National Park, we moved a little further south into the Abajo Mountains (Blue Mountains) so we could get a little peak-bagging in on our trip. Since I’ve hiked the highest peaks in the La Sal Mountains and Henry Mountains, I thought it would be nice to complete the trifecta by reaching the summit of Abajo Peak (11,360), the highest point in the Abajo Mountains. This one is a little easier than the others though, since there is a good road all the way up to the top because of all the towers and antennas up there. Shortly after sunrise we broke down our camp located at the base of the Abajo Mountains and drove up the road to the summit. There were some nice views along the way.

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Southern Utah Wanderings | Northern Bears Ears
Friday – Sunday, September 29 – October 1, 2017

A large hoodoo we visited while exploring the northern portion of Bears Ears National Monument.

This year for my annual weeklong trip into southern Utah during the first week of October I met up with Jared and we spent most of the week exploring, hiking, four-wheeling, camping, backpacking, peak-bagging and photographing within Bears Ears National Monument. The first few days of our trip were spent in the northern part of the Bears Ears between Canyonlands National Park and Lockhart Basin. (We did a little hiking into Canyonlands, too.) We were hoping to visit a few new pictograph panels and maybe find some ruins, but we ran into some issue that prevented us from reaching the rock art sites we were looking for this time, so we will definitely have to come back and try again another time. Here are some photos from the first three days of the trip.

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Friday & Sunday, September 15 & 17, 2017

Unusual goblins under a stormy sky near the Little Book Cliffs Wild Horse Area.

After hiking to the summit of Corcoran Point from the Tellerico Trail in the Book Cliffs two years ago, I got a nice view of Corcoran Peak (8,076) and thought it would be a good peak close to home to try climbing another time. Since we were staying around home this weekend to go to a concert on Saturday, I thought it would be a good idea to head out to the Little Book Cliffs after work on Friday, catch the sunset, spend the night and then climb Corcoran Peak on Saturday morning before going to the concert. The plan was going well until after sunset when it started to rain pretty heavily. This is not an area you want to be in when the roads get wet, so I ended up heading home instead of camping and then returning late Sunday morning to try the climb again.

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