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21 May 2010

gonna put my backpack on and walk

I just spent 3 wonderful days in the desert backcountry. I really can't believe I've been coming to Escalante for 25 years and never been to Coyote Gulch, and even more embarrassing, I never knew there was an arch (or 2 or 3) in said Gulch. Duh. Here is the view of the bend in the river, standing at the highest point under Jacob Hamblin arch. We camped just to the left (out of the picture) under a little ledge, right across the river from the spring- where you can drink deliciously cool spring water that trickles from the rocks.

Walk a little further down the canyon, about two miles from Jacob Hamblin arch and you bump right into this natural bridge, I believe it's just called Coyote Gulch natural bridge, a bridge because it was made by water; an arch is made by wind and rain.

Looking down river at Jacob Hamblin arch. It's about a 7 mile hike in from Hurricane Wash, where we parked. This is what comes into view when you come around the canyon bend. Orange globe mallows in the foreground.

We climbed just above the natural bridge to see an indian grainery and an amazing view all around. The area (well, all of Utah really) has had huge amounts of rain this winter and spring making the wildflowers plentiful and stunning. Everywhere you looked there was something blooming- indian paintbrush, evening primrose, juniper, skyrockets, lupine, penstimon, beavertail cactus, orange globe mallow and those were just the ones we could name.

The beavertail cactus flowers were my favorite. The pink was in that hot category and the flowers- papery thin. I couldn't stop snapping pictures of the blooming desert- especially the pink.
I'm planning on making up for lost time, we are already planning a trip back with the big kids (that can carry their own packs) in the fall, sometime when the weather isn't too hot. We stopped at the ever popular Spooky and Peek-a-Boo slot canyons on our way back. Fantastically fun, I'll get more pictures up in flickr soon, when I get a minute between trying to clean my house, plant the garden (before it's too late), last week of school events, yard work etc...
Back to the madness, but it was great to get away from it all for a few days. You've got to recharge your batteries, take some time to ponder the important things in life, slow down and unplug any chance you get. Thanks to my father-in-law Owen for planning and organizing the trip- you're the best.

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