Monday, April 9, 2012

Easter Corn

Hannes, Elliot, Pete and I heard there might be some Easter eggs to find on the top of Galena Peak so we went on the hunt--but all we found was some really good corn skiing. 
Pete heading up the final climb

Near the top:  Castle Peak in the background. Temps were 19 deg when we started around 7:45.  Slight overcast and moderate winds at the summit.  We were wondering if the corn would come off. 
Summit:  11,002, Then the ski down.  Not exactly corn was the saying of the day for the top 1000 feet of vertical. 

But then it got really good and stayed that way for the rest of the descent.  Over 4000 feet of skiing back to the car. 

The middle rock band--Kind of steep here

Wolverine Track in Cherry Creek on the way out.  All in all a really fun adventure. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Dark Canyon Trip

 Water and Rock!!

I went to this extraordinary place called Dark Canyon with the family over break.  Dark Canyon, a tributary of the Colorado, sits in this really remote corner of Southern Utah.  It is South of Canyonlands, East of the Colorado and North of the highway between Blanding and Hanksville.  Not much out there but canyons.   We went there last year too and did a really difficulty route.  This year we decided to do a route that was a little easier but still mostly off trail and remote.  We is me, my wife Amy and my two girls Kaitlyn (17) and Annika (14).  Make no mistake this is a dialed desert crew comfortable in rugged 3rd and 4th class terrain.  So three themes emerged:  Great weather, amazing slickrock camps and beautiful water and rock. 
Some amazing slickrock camps

Our route took us down the Sundance Trail into Dark Canyon, up Lean To Canyon, Down Young's Canyon then down Dark Canyon back to the Sundance Trail.  We saw a few folks in Dark Canyon near the Sundance trail but no where else. The route involved mostly off trail, some 3rd and short 4th class sections and demanded good route finding and navigation. 
Some of the 4th class sections

3rd and 4th class terrain is a little more challenging with 40 lbs on your back

There was amazing pottery and lithic scatters on the mesa tops

Another type of native
Some more water and rock