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The Sandstone Knob of Kodels Canyon

Easter Weekend | Sunday, April 17, 2022

This year on Easter morning Diane and I woke up before sunrise with plans to go on a longer hike together into the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness, but shortly after leaving home we changed our minds and decided take it easy and do something shorter and easier instead, which turned out to be a good decision since it was very humid out! Instead, we headed over to the Kodels Canyon Trailhead and hiked a couple of the short interconnecting front-country trails to an outcropping of colorful Entrada sandstone located on the bench between Kodels Canyon and Devils Canyon. For well over the last decade it feels like every time I drive through Fruita on I-70 and look off to my left at this knob of sandstone I think to myself that I should really hike up to it sometime. Well, I guess it’s better late than never!

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Roubideau Creek in the Camel Back Wilderness

The Edge of the Uncompahgre Plateau | Friday & Saturday, April 15-16, 2022

This weekend I needed to stay closer to home to get some work done on my Jeep and around the house, so I turned my attention to the Camel Back Wilderness Study Area at edge of the Uncompahgre Plateau between Delta and Montrose. Last spring I had planned to hike up Roubideau Creek after visiting the Devil’s Thumb, but the water was just too high at the time, so I thought I would give that hike another try on Saturday morning. After leaving work on Friday afternoon I drove to Delta and then followed some Jeep roads to the rim of Roubideau Canyon across from the Camel Back and watched the sunset. Besides having a great view over the canyon, I could also see the Grand Mesa, West Elks and Sneffels Range on the horizons from my vantage point.

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Under The Ledge: Trails in the Land of Standing Rocks

Lost In The Maze II | Wednesday – Sunday, April 6-10, 2022

I can hardly believe it’s been just over four years since my last visit to the Land of Standing Rocks in Canyonlands National Park. It feels like it was just yesterday when Diane and I were heading out to The Maze over the long Memorial Day weekend each spring, and I’ve recently had a strong desire to return. After completing all the trails in The Needles and the Island in the Sky in 2018 and 2019, The Maze is the only remaining district of Canyonlands where I have not hiked every official trail on the map, so I figured it was time to head back and continue working on completing that personal goal. That’s part of the reason I hiked down the North Trail late last year. So back in early November I got on Rec.gov and booked couple campsites in the Land of Standing Rocks, two nights at Chimney Rock and two nights at The Wall, which seemed like a good place to basecamp for the trails that I wanted to hike this time. My friend Jerry, Jared and Dave were going to be joining me on this trip, but unfortunately Jerry got sick just before the trip started and was unable to make it this time.

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The Arches of Mee Canyon II

Canyons of the Black Ridge Wilderness: Bulwark Arch & Arete Arch
Saturday & Sunday, April 2-3, 2022

This weekend I needed to stay close to home since I’m going to be leaving on a trip to The Maze in a couple of days, so Diane and I decided to head out on a local overnight backpacking trip into the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness to visit a couple more arches located on the benches high above Mee Canyon. We slept in a bit late on Saturday morning, had a good breakfast, and then drove up through Glade Park to the Knowles Canyon Trailhead in the McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area. We shouldered our packs and followed the Knowles Canyon Trail for about a mile and then followed a maze of old roads to the rim of a western fork of Mee Canyon and set up camp on top of the ridge.

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McCarty Bench: Escalante Canyon to Palmer Gulch

The Edge of the Uncompahgre Plateau: Dominguez Canyon Wilderness
Friday – Saturday, March 25-26, 2022

This weekend I needed to stay close to home since Diane and I had tickets to a pair of concerts in town, so I decided to do a little exploring in the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness at the edge of the Uncompahgre Plateau on Saturday morning. Since I wasn’t going to be travelling far, I stopped home for a little bit after work on Friday and then made my way over to Escalante Canyon to spend the night. After fording Escalante Creek I drove up the Escalante Rim Road and found a nice campsite right along the rim of the canyon. I arrived about an hour before sunset and was treated to a 360 degree view of the Grand Mesa, West Elks and Sneffels Range. Unfortunately, it is currently open burn season in the area, so there was a lot of smoke and haze in the air this evening. I took a couple of photos before sunset and then read for a while until I went to bed early.

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