Tuesday, July 18, 2006
The landscape of my childhood is found in the curving sandstone canyons of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument area in southern Utah. Some of my earliest and best memories are of countless backpacking trips down there with my family and assorted friends. I think I first spent the night in the Calf Creek campground at age three, and it's been a long time affair ever since. I've participated in weddings, baptisms, vision quests, reunions, art happenings, jobs, and other assorted events in Death Hollow, Sand Creek, Coyote Gulch, Upper Calf Creek, and numerous other canyons. Needless to say I'm always more than happy to lead a group of campers down there each session, and this time our trip to Coyote was no exception.
We got to the trail head late, so we only hiked about twenty minutes in the dusk till we plopped down in the last open sand patch before we hit sandstone.
Goodmorning sandpatch, Neil, Topher, Matt
The next day we traversed some sandstone moonscape, till we came to a spot where you can lower your packs, and then squeeze through a crack made by a large slab against the cliff.
Boys looking over the cliff, squeezing through the crack, and packs getting lowered.
We spent the remainder of the day playing in the water, skipping stones, catching frogs, and then hiking about 7 miles to our camp in the Jacob Hamblin Arch alcove. Dehydrated beans and fresh spring water never tasted so good. The next morning we got up and hiked out Hurricane wash.
Neil showing how it's done; Steven's Arch; Conner likes lunch; me, my new hat, and jr. counselor Eli (who in a teen game of 'husband, lover, muse & friend' I chose as my husband, and then he chose me as wife! we're only 9 years apart. . . )
The boys take a much needed desert shower, the weirdest bug the boys found
Morning hikers, Jacob Hamblin Arch (named for my 4th great grampa).
Posted by zlb