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Category: Exploring

The Ribbon Trail to White Rocks

Colorado National Monument Traverse V
Easter | Sunday, April 1, 2018

This weekend Diane and I stayed close to home so we could go on our annual Colorado National Monument Traverse on Sunday. This yearly hike has sort of become a tradition for us where we plan a longer hike through the Colorado National Monument by combining existing trails and off-trail routes. This is the fifth year we have planned a hike like this and this time I wanted to do something on the east side of the Monument that included No Thoroughfare Canyon. If you are interested in checking out our previous traverses, you can find links to those trip reports here: Traverses of the Colorado National Monument

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Sids Mountain

Friday – Sunday, March 23-25

This weekend I decided to take a break from exploring Canyonlands National Park and Bears Ears National Monument, so I headed over to the San Rafael Swell instead. This allowed me to avoid driving through the area surrounding Moab during the popular and very busy Easter Jeep Safari. I had decided earlier this year as I was making my plans for the spring that it was finally time to hike to the Kofford Cabin on Sids Mountain since it had been on my to-do list for a pretty long time. Originally, I was planning on spending the weekend hiking alone, but a few weeks ago I thought it might be nice to hike with my friend Jerry again, so I asked if he was interested in joining me, and he was.

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Bears Ears Lost

Thursday – Sunday, March 15-18, 2018

This weekend I headed down to Cedar Mesa and the Bears Ears area to meet up with my friend Alan for a weekend of hiking. I drove down a little early so I could pick up my Annual Cedar Mesa Hiking Pass from the Kane Gulch Ranger Station and then did a little hiking and exploring on my own before I met up with Alan. Sometimes you just need to get out and wander through a canyon by yourself! Last year all of the area we explored would have been located within Bears Ears National Monument, but after last month I’m pretty sure that everywhere we went is now outside of the new boundaries. Although, I’m not exactly sure what the status of those changes are and if they are official or not? The weather on Friday and Saturday was very nice, but I ended up having to cut my trip a day short since it started to snow and rain on Sunday morning. We definitely needed the precipitation and I had already had a few nice hikes, so it wasn’t too disappointing. Here are some photos from the weekend.

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Chesler Park & Elephant Canyon

Friday – Monday, March 9-12, 2018

Late last year as I was thinking about planning some of my 2018 trips that would require advance permits, I decided it was finally time to backpack into Chesler Park in the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park. I’ve day-hiked into Chesler Park a number of times over the years from the four-wheel drive trailhead of the Joint Trail, but this time I wanted to backpack in so I could spend more time exploring the area and hopefully photographing this beautiful area at sunrise and sunset. Of course, planning a trip this far out in advance is like playing the lottery with the weather, especially in early to mid March on the Colorado Plateau, so as the dates of the trip approached I kept a close eye on the weather and hoped for good conditions.

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Robbers Roost Canyon

Friday – Saturday, March 2-3, 2018

I left after work on Friday and made my way west into Utah where I stopped in Green River for dinner and fuel. I continued south towards Hanksville in the dark and then took the familiar left turn onto the road to Hans Flat. It had been pretty windy all day and was supposed to stay that way overnight and through Saturday. This meant there were a few sections of the road that were completely covered with sand dunes, so I had to be careful not to hit them going too fast. After I passed the road to Green River and Horseshoe Canyon I came to Robbers Roost Flat and the road that would take me out to Angel Point, where I planned to spend the night and start hiking from in the morning. I’ve driven by this intersection in the road near Burr Pass countless times in the past on my way to the Maze District of Canyonlands National Park, but I’d never made the right turn before. It was finally time to head in that direction and to start exploring the canyons in this area!

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