Training Day: 44
Elevation Gain: 2,300 ft
Weather: Started out high 20s, ended mid-to-high 40s and WINDY
How It Felt: The hike itself felt pretty darn good! My legs felt strong and didn’t get tired at all. My tootsies and ankles, on the other hand, were happy when we finished.
Commentary: We woke up to a full moon shining brightly. Despite sleeping like shit, the moonlight and brightening morning sky energized me. Our plan was to start hiking at civil twilight, but we were running a little bit late and ended up starting at sunrise. Close enough.
It was quite chilly when we started, but an ascent at the beginning warmed us up quick. There wasn’t much of a trail to The Wave, but thankfully I had downloaded a map with the trail marked on it. The scenery left me in awe, and left me wanting to explore everything.
Our early start was well worth it because we had The Wave to ourselves for a little bit before a couple of guys popped up after us. I had a couple of other loops planned that went by arches and doing the far one made the most sense logistically. The hike wasn’t the easiest because there was no trail, and the arch was hard to find a wee underwhelming. But it was an adventure with a bit of scrambling, so we still had a blast.
Back by The Wave we stopped for lunch and considered the second loop. It went up, up, up. The wind was howling and clouds blanketed the sky, making the temperature drop. There were also a bunch of people, probably idiots (probably not, but my husband and I are anti-people when out in nature), so we decided to hit it up the next time we got a permit. There will be a next time!
Then we explored a couple of slot canyons. First, we went through Wire Pass Slot Canyon, which was my very first slot canyon! Squeal! I’d read somewhere that the ladder going down into the canyon got washed away during a flash flood, but a new one was there to help us down. The canyon led us down to Buckskin Gulch.
Buckskin Gulch was more impressive because the canyon walls were higher. I wanted to explore more of it, but deep puddles spanning the narrow width of the canyon changed my mind. We explored what we could and saw what I think what was the old ladder from Wire Pass.
We got back to the van with plenty of daylight left, which is what we were hoping for so the kitten could get some time outside. Unfortunately it was super windy with ridiculous gusts, and she jumped back in the van as soon as the wind hit her. To celebrate our long day and finally seeing The Wave, we grilled up a delicious ribeye, a van tradition.
The day was everything I’d hoped for. And what’s even better is our diesel heater ran strong the entire time! Having a warm van to come “home” to was very nice after our long hike.
Endlessly seeking adventure.