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Tag: grand mesa

Lower Palisade Plunge & Palisade Rim Trails

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Well, you could say that 2024 has not started off on the right foot for me! On New Year’s Day I was planning on hiking in the Colorado National Monument to start off the new year right, but when I went to leave early in the morning my Jeep wouldn’t start. I was pretty positive that it wasn’t the battery and could hear that the engine was making a loud knocking sound as it was trying to turn over, so my heart sank as I realized there was most likely something wrong internally to the engine. So much for my first hike of the year! Later in the day when it warmed up a bit outside I made sure the battery was good and that there wasn’t something simple wrong, and then I had my Jeep towed over to the dealership so it could be looked at. Luckily, my Jeep is still just barely covered under the Powertrain Warranty. Anyway, since my Jeep is still waiting to be diagnosed I was stuck at home this weekend, but was able to borrow Diane’s car on Saturday morning so I could at least go on a local hike. I was hoping to get in a hike with some elevation gain as training for a longer upcoming hike later this month, so I decided to give the lower Palisade Plunge Trail a try. The last time I had hiked the nearby Palisade Rim Trail the Plunge Trail didn’t even exist, so this would be all new terrain for me.

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Fall Colors on the Grand Mesa

After Work Adventures | Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Hard to believe, but I recently realized that it’s been five years since I last headed up onto the Grand Mesa to check out the Fall Colors, which was something I used to do almost every year at the end of September. With that in mind, even though I knew the autumn colors seemed to be running a bit behind this year, I decided to head up onto the Grand Mesa after work today for a short evening visit since it would be my only opportunity this week. Unfortunately, there was also a prescribed burn happening on the Uncompahgre Plateau near Gateway today, so there was a lot of smoke in the air and conditions weren’t ideal for photography, but here are a few of the photos I took this evening.

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Stinking Desert National Monument

After Work Adventures | Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Even though it was a little bit warmer out today than yesterday, I thought it would be a good time to head out after work so I could drive and hike to the top of a couple easy highpoints and overlooks located in the desert between Grand Junction, Delta, the Grand Mesa and the Gunnison River, and maybe even catch the sunset before heading home. This is an area that longtime locals affectionately (or maybe it’s not so affectionate) call the Stinking Desert. I’ve heard stories from long before my time living in Grand Junction about how an official-looking sign for the Stinking Desert National Monument would show up along the highway during holiday weekends, and I’ve always thought that would have been funny to see, so I’m going to honor that unofficial National Monument with this little Trip Report. Welcome to the Stinking Desert!

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Little Book Cliffs: Main Canyon to Cottonwood Canyon

Labor Day Weekend | Sunday, September 3, 2023

Last week, after cutting my trip into the High Plateaus of Utah short, I came home on Friday with the intention of heading up into the San Juan Mountains over the weekend, but instead I ended up being lazy and staying home all day Saturday. I didn’t want to stay at home the entire weekend, so on Sunday morning I got up early and headed over to the Little Book Cliffs so I could hike up Main Canyon to it’s junction with Cottonwood Canyon. I had hiked a couple miles up Main Canyon back in 2016, but was turned around by thunderstorms that evening, so I was looking forward to finishing up the rest of the trail this time.

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Triangle Mesa from Cactus Park

Dominguez Canyon Wilderness | Sunday, June 18, 2023

After spending Saturday floating through The Chute of Muddy Creek, I was originally planning to spend Sunday morning hiking in the Raggeds Wilderness of the Elk Mountains. However, once I realized that Colorado Highway 133 was still closed before Somerset and didn’t feel like driving the long way around, I cancelled those plans. Instead, I decided to stay closer to home and went for a morning hike to the summit of Triangle Mesa in the Dominguez Canyon Wilderness.

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