Monday, October 17, 2016

A Short Hike in a Wasatch Mountain Canyon

Sometimes I simply need to get out into the wild and enjoy the benefits of being in nature. I used to do more long, all day hikes, but these days a busy schedule restricts me to more shorter hikes. Sometimes all I have time for is a walk. The hike these photos are from happened in late September. The canyon is the same one I posted about in May, but this hike didn't go nearly as far. In spite of that, it was a well spent and enjoyable evening.

There had been a lot of rain the day before, with snow in the higher country. The rain continued throughout the night and tapered off in the morning, giving way to a beautiful mild autumn day. Much of the little-used and poorly-maintained trail I used for the hike up the canyon goes through thick brush. That brush held a lot of rain water from the previous day's storms. I tried using my hiking stick to knock water off of the the bushes and overhanging tree branches before passing by, but I still got plenty wet.

Much of the trail passes through thickets of scrub oak, rocky mountain maple, spruce and fir, plus a lot of different kinds of shrubby plants and weeds I don't know the names of. The farther up canyon I went, the thicker it got. Thick brush notwithstanding, The trail provided several spectacular views of the canyon.

Someone put this trail in a long time ago. These days, the trail isn't used very much at all. It's hard to find in the first place, and hasn't been maintained. As one hikes up canyon, the trail becomes increasingly difficult to follow. It eventually fades away completely. At that point I follow a scree slope down to the bottom of the canyon and the main trail. 

It was late in the day by that time, and much of the narrow canyon's steep slopes were in shadow. I paused to enjoy the glow of sunlight on higher peaks and ridges, and the bright red of a few maple trees. 

Daylight was fading fast. One more camera shot looking up canyon before it became too dark for taking pictures, then I headed down the the main trail. The rest of the hike was in the dark, but it's a relatively easy trail that I'm very familiar with.

It was a very nice day for a good hike, thoroughly enjoyed. I really must insist these hikes get scheduled into my busy life more frequently.

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