Saturday, December 6, 2014
In a recent conversation with a Facebook friend, he mentioned to me that there might be some rock art located along the Little Dolores River between two parcels of private property. After doing some research on the property boundaries and finding that access would probably be possible by hiking down Toms Canyon, I mapped a possible route on Google Earth that avoided all private property and stayed on BLM land to the area. The only concern I had left was finding an access point down into Toms Canyon from the rim. I had found a spot on Google Earth that looked good, but would not know for sure until I was there and checked it out for myself. On Saturday morning I decided to head up and give this hike a shot. After stopping at the Visitor Center in the Colorado National Monument to pick up a calendar that features one of my photos, I continued up through Glade Park to the Little Dolores Road and took it almost to it’s end at the private property. I turned off on a side road that lead to a campsite and started hiking from there. First, I had to climb to a short pass on a faint trail that gave me a nice view down into Toms Canyon. The faint trail I followed up to the pass pretty much ended there and I had to bushwhack through the steep and rocky wash on the way down into Toms Canyon. There was one rocky ledge that I thought was going to stop me and prevent me from going further, but after a little searching I managed to find a way down. It turns out that the route I had planned in Google Earth worked out perfectly. Once I was down in Toms Canyon the hiking was much easier and I followed some well-used cow trails.