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Tag: wilderness

Memorial Day Weekend Along the Black Canyon

Memorial Day Weekend | Friday – Sunday, May 24-26, 2024

This Memorial Day Weekend I decided to stay a little closer to home so I could spend some time along the Gunnison River in both the Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area and the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park. Since it’s getting to be that time of the year when the desert is starting to get a little too warm for me and there is still too much snow up in the high country, luckily this area along the rim of the Black Canyon is in-between and usually just right at this time of the year.

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Stories on Stone: Rock Art from the Pahranagat Trail

Presidents Day Weekend | Thursday – Monday, February 15-19, 2024

This year for the Presidents Day holiday weekend I decided to take Friday off from work so I could spend four days exploring and searching for rock art along the Pahranagat Trail, which straddles the Mojave Desert and Great Basin Desert in southern Nevada. Just like last year, I invited my friend Jared along and he was up for joining me again. Unfortunately, he was unable to get Friday off from work so we planned to meet up later that night, which meant that I was on my own for Friday. I left from work on Thursday afternoon, headed to St. George where I grabbed a late dinner and then found a spot to camp just over the state line in Arizona. On Friday morning I was up early and on my way into Nevada.

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Into the Dark: Canyons of the Dark Canyon Plateau

Southern Utah Wanderings | Friday – Monday, September 29 – October 2, 2023

The time had finally come to get back out into the desert on the Colorado Plateau and I was definitely ready to begin my annual trip into Southern Utah with my friend Jared. This year we decided to start out hiking and exploring a couple of canyons that cut deep into the Dark Canyon Plateau and Elk Ridge so we could continue what we had originally began during our 2021 trip around the Abajo Mountains before we were chased out of the higher country by wet and stormy weather at the time. As usual, I left from work on Friday afternoon, grabbed a quick dinner in Fruita and then drove straight through to Monticello, where I topped off my gas tank so it would last me the next couple of days in the backcountry. It had been a very windy drive, which would be just a taste of what was in store for us over the next couple of days. From Monticello I followed the Harts Draw Loop Road into Indian Creek and then headed up onto the Salt Creek Plateau where I stopped at our usual campsite in the area and waited for Jared to arrive later in the evening.

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The Rico Mountains & Lizard Head Trail

Friday – Sunday, September 22-24, 2023

Earlier this summer I had planned on spending another weekend hiking and exploring around the Rico Mountains and Lizard Head Wilderness, which are located at the western end of the San Juan Mountains. I’ve enjoyed heading down to this area over the past couple of years and was looking forward to returning again, but unfortunately on that trip I had started feeling ill and ended up coming home early on the first night. This weekend I wanted to give that trip another shot before the summer season comes to an end and I start heading back into the desert for the rest of the year, so on Friday afternoon I left from work and headed back down to the Rico Mountains.

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Rattlesnake Canyon: West Rim Arch (Finger Arch)

After Work Adventures | Tuesday, September 5, 2023

This morning as I was leaving home on my way to work I noticed that there was a coolness to the air that I haven’t felt for a couple of months down in the Grand Valley. It certainly felt like fall is finally on the way! Since the temperature stayed nice throughout the rest of the day I thought it would be a great afternoon to go for a local hike when I got out of work. I stopped home at lunch to grab my hiking gear and then left from work and headed up into the Canyons of the Black Ridge so I could hike to West Rim Arch, which is also known as Finger Arch and is located at the upper end of Rattlesnake Canyon. I’ve been meaning to get over to the base of this arch since 2020 when I was on a kick visiting other arches in the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness during the pandemic lockdowns, but I never got around to it and have kept putting it off for the past few years, so I was looking forward to finally getting a closer look.

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