Tagged: colorado

Friday – Sunday, June 2-4, 2017

Sunset over ripples in the sand at Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve.

This year I have been trying to cross things off my to-do list that have been on there for way too long. One of the items on my list that I have been looking at for a number of years was backpacking into The Great Sand Dunes. Earlier this year I decided that this was finally the year I was going to go for it! After some research it looked like June would be a good time to go. Even though Great Sand Dunes National Park is usually pretty busy in June since Medano Creek is typically at peak flow, I figured it wouldn’t matter much for us since we would be hiking and camping deeper in the dune field than most visitors go. Looking at my calendar, my only free weekend in June was the very first weekend (It’s going to be a busy month!), which was a little earlier than I would like to have gone, but since it was our only option that’s when we decided to go.

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Monday, May 22, 2017

A little afterglow on the sandstone at dusk in the Colorado National Monument.

I’ve been wanting to photograph sunset from Gold Star Canyon in the Colorado National Monument for a while now, but every time I think about heading up that way it seems the sky doesn’t want to cooperate with me. Late this evening the sky was looking good for the possibility of a nice sunset, so I headed over to the White Rocks Trailhead and hiked up into Gold Star Canyon. Unfortunately, as I was hiking into the canyon more clouds started to build over the valley and my hopes for a nice sunset never really materialized. While I was waiting around I found out that the biting gnats are now out for the season and they were pretty annoying. I stuck around until about 30 minutes after the sun had set hoping for some color, but it never really happened aside from a little afterglow. I guess I will have to try again another time.

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Sunday, May 21, 2017

Chris floating the Gunnison River through the Dominguez – Escalante National Conservation Area.

Over a month ago I planned a river trip with Jackson and Chris so we could check out a new section of the lower Gunnison River starting at Confluence Park in Delta to the takeout at Escalante Canyon. We had originally planned on going Saturday, but because of a late-season winter storm that came through the area at the end of the week, which really brought down the temperature, we pushed it back to Sunday and hoped it would warm up a little. With the change of plans, Diane and I went hiking in the Gunnison Gorge on the Chukar Trail on Saturday instead.

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Saturday, May 20, 2017

A nice view up the Gunnison River from the bottom of the Chukar Trail in the Black Canyon.

This weekend Diane and I stayed closer to home since I was hoping to raft part of the lower Gunnison River on Sunday. I guess this plan worked out well since the battery in my Jeep died on Friday and I had to wait until Saturday morning at 9:00am to pickup a new one and then install it. Because of that delay we left home later in the morning and decided to go on a short hike into the Gunnison Gorge on the Chukar Trail. The Chukar Trail is one of four main trails on the west side of the Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area that you can take down to the Gunnison River. It’s also the easiest of the four, coming in at 1.1 miles in length (one way) and descending 560 feet. The only other trail I have hiked down before was the Ute Trail a couple of years ago, which is the longest and has the most elevation loss. The delay in the morning actually worked in our favor since we needed to wait a little while for the roads to dry out from the late-season winter storm that had just moved through the area the past couple of days.

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Sunday, May 7, 2017

A nice view from the pourover into Red Canyon within the Colorado National Monument.

Since our plans of camping the previous night in the Yellow Cat area had fallen through, we decided to spend a few hours at the Colorado National Monument on Sunday evening instead. There had been stormy weather on and off all day, but it looked like it was finally starting to clear out enough by late afternoon. We started out by hiking and exploring part of the mesa between Red Canyon and Ute Canyon. I had hoped to hike further out to the point, but thunderstorms had moved into the area again so we didn’t stray too far from the Jeep. I guess that means we will have to return another time. Afterwards, we went on another short hike into the upper portion of Red Canyon that I’ve driven past numerous times and always thought might be interesting to check out. Then before heading back home we stopped at a couple overlooks along Rim Rick Drive on our way out of the Monument. It was another nice evening in the Monument, but it was very humid out!

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