Friday, December 12, 2008

Silverjack and Cimmaron

There are three forks of the Cimmaron, and the trails connect at the top, so you can hike up one canyon and down another, and lot of all three hikes is in a wilderness area. We thought we would find some aspen in color, but were a week or two early. Instead, we found some very late-blooming blue Gentian.

Fall Color on the Mesa

This happens the second half of September, and moves down the mountain side. Most of October we have brilliant gold cottonwoods along the river down in the valley, so we have a very long color season.

Midsummer Alpine Hike

This is a day trip entry.

Come July, the wildflowers are blooming in the high country. There is a lot of access to 8,000 feet and above, but the flowers still differ based on soils and exposure and all that.

This was up beyond Colbran, but I would have to check a map for a more specific location. We hiked along a stream, to a lake at about 9,000 ft elevation; the weather was glorious, the path wide, and the terrain not too steep.

Slot Canyon

This is a day trip entry.

For this hike, we went west of Green River, and then south along the east side of the San Rafael Swell, for a great day hike and outing. We hiked up Bell Canyon and down Little Wild Horse Canyon. In some places, the canyon was just a shoulder width pathway through towering sandstone. It was approximately 8 miles total hiking, and a loop trail (my favorite), rather than an out and back.

This would be a good hike anytime but summer, with the usual warnings about weather awareness. Though rare, it is subject to flash floods, and could be cold and uncomfortable, and slippery in too much ice or snow. Depending on current conditions, it is hikeable September through June, with July and August just too hot for most, and August is often prone to thunder storms.

We stopped at Ray's Tavern in Green River for dinner on the way home. They serve the best burgers in the world, and have Unita Microbrew.

If you want, you can camp either at the trail head or in Goblin Valley, or nearby in Capitol Reef National Park, but from Canyon Wren Farm, it is a great day trip...