Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Many Pools Hike, Take 3

From Page, the WINs moved up to Mount Carmel Junction, UT, where we had easy access to the upper portion of Zion National Park.

There is a secret hike there, Many Pools, that I did twice last year and offered to lead some of our group there again. We took a group shot early, so we weren't too tired and spread out.

From the "trailhead" we just headed uphill over the slickrock -

Passing pool after many pools.

The first time I was here last year, there were many frogs laying eggs and making lots of noise. This year, the romantic stuff was over, but there were lots of big tadpoles.

And Dave managed to find one small frog.

As we continued uphill, the slickrock became more and more beautiful!

Looking back down the hill. I can't believe I'm ahead of a few of them!

We finally turned around and headed back down. If you are interested in doing this hike, the Visitors Center in Zion will give you the information, but you have to ask. It's also in the AllTrails app.

While we were in the area, we stopped to walk up to some hoodoos that were nearby.

A great day!

Friday, May 19, 2017

A Couple Great Hikes

Yesterday, when we were on the river, we saw a crowd of people on the rim staring down at us. Why?

We were going around Horseshoe Bend, a beautiful overlook, but not nearly as impressive from the water.

We saw lots of scary posing, but this was as close to the edge as I was willing to get...

On another day, 9 of us did a hike that I have always wanted to do - Waterholes Canyon. It's on the Navajo reservation and requires a permit, but we got permits and are good to go. Dropping down into the canyon was a little difficult, but we did it.

There were some other difficult places, but all do-able.

Looking back at the ones behind me - wow, I can't believe there were some behind me!

We found a dead baby rattle snake -

And another dead animal - I think this was a Ring-tailed Cat.

After we went down a little farther, the canyon was just beautiful -

With lots of gorgeous swirls.

When we got to this ladder, some of us turned around, including me. The scary part was that the ladder didn't go all the way to the top, so I was worried about getting back down.

On the way back, I stopped to look at this Sacred Datura, a poisonous plant sometimes used as a hallucinogen.

It was full of water from the rain.

I went back past our entry point to where the canyon goes under US Hwy 89. I really wanted to see this!

There's a very old rusty car under the bridge. I don't know the story, but it has to be sad.

We're moving north tomorrow!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Rafting the Colorado River

Looking down from the Visitors Center at the Glen Canyon Dam in Page, AZ, you can see some blue rafts used to go down the river to Lee's Ferry. But how do you get down there? There is a long tunnel that goes down through the rock cliff! It comes out just to the left of the center of the picture.

The next day, we rode down through the tunnel and went on a tour on the rafts. We had a great view leaving the dam.

There were 11 WINs, but I couldn't get them all in the picture.

We had a couple stops along the way, mostly for potty breaks.

At the first stop there were some nice petroglyphs, mostly pronghorns. There's another row of them near the ground.

What are all those people looking at up on the cliff? We'll find out tomorrow...

Back in the boats, we saw some wildlife, including this Great Blue Heron.

As we continued down river, the cliffs got even higher.

We made another short stop -

And then arrived at our destination - Lee's Ferry. This is where the rafts take off to go down through the Grand Canyon. If you miss this take-out point, it's a very long trip!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Page Two

The town of Page, AZ did not exist before the Glen Canyon dam was built on the Colorado River in 1950. There's a nice overlook where you can get a view of the dam -

And the undammed river downstream.

Behind the dam is Lake Powell.

In the background you can see the marina.

We ate lunch at Stromboli's, where the calzones are big enough for 4 meals!

One day, 6 of us started out on a beautiful trail. The yellow Princes Plume flowers were stunning.

The bees liked them too.

There was lots of pollen in the air.

We climbed into this canyon -

Where a scary monster greeted us.

We walked a little ways, but the trail kept climbing in and out of the canyon, so 4 of us turned around and went to a different trail.

The trail by the dam to the Hanging Gardens was pretty too, and much easier.

The Hanging Gardens, full of Maidenhair Ferns, and a few other things.

It's so amazing to see them growing out of the rock!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Page, AZ - One of the Prettiest Spots Around

Our next stop was Lone Rock Campground - parking right on the beach. This is the view out my window. The blog header photo was taken here last year.

The first thing we did was go on a tour of Antelope Canyon X. This is a "new" canyon tour, having just opened a year ago. To get to it you walk down this sandy road.

And get to the entrance.

Having been to Upper Antelope and Lower Antelope many times before, I was excited to see this one.

And it didn't disappoint!

Although not as long as Upper or Lower, the scenery was just as spectacular.

I got a cheesy picture of me, of course...

All too soon we turned around and exited.

But the tour wasn't done yet! We walked over to another part of the canyon.

This one had a guard at the door.

We filed through -

Remembering to look up at every angle.

Our Navajo guide was very good -

And even played the flute and sang for us.

But wait! Gail had a flute too and played a little.

We got a group WIN shot before leaving. What a great day!