Camping & Taking Photos in E. California and the SouthWest

Posts tagged “hiking

Water pockets

We took our friend, Kristy, to White Pocket and found that the pockets were full of water! It was such fun to see the area in such a new way, and really fun to take Kristy. We also went to the Coral Pink Sand Dunes ~ Kristy showed us a whole line of dinosaur tracks there…from at least 3 different kinds of dinosaurs. It’s such fun when she is in town, and especially great when her husband, Brian, gets to come.










Doug’s high school English teacher, Jerry, and his wife, Cathie came to visit. We had such a blast! Doug took them to Paria townsite, Buckskin Gulch and White Pocket. Then we all drove to Boulder, stopped for coffee at the Kiva Koffeehouse, dinner at Hell’s Backbone Grill and spent the night. The next day we drove to Capitol Reef. We hiked in Cohab Canyon and had a picnic lunch in Fruita. The leaves were beautiful and we had great weather. Crisp and cold, but sunny. After spending the night in Capitol Reef, they drove on to Scottsdale to visit their granddaughter and we drove back to Kanab. We sure hated to see them leave.












Wave Again

Doug applied for another permit to visit the Wave and was the first one picked! We could not have asked for a better day…it was perfect. The 2-hour hike is so beautiful…and The Wave is beyond description.

This first photo was taken along the way…

This large camera was formerly owned by Edward Weston, a famous photographer in the early 20th century. The current owner lovingly restored the camera, which was painted in battleship grey during the war years. I would love to see the photos.

The Wave

Vermilion Cliffs National Monument

Ever since I first saw photos of The Wave, I’ve been wanting to see it. We’ve tried to get a permit for over 3 years. Only 20 people per day are allowed in, which is great because it’s quite a small area and everyone wants to take photos. There are two lotteries – one online and one in person at the Kanab BLM office. Finally we got a permit! It took about 2 hours to drive to the trailhead from Kanab, and then another 2+ hours to hike to The Wave. The hike itself was quite spectacular…past lots of beautifully colored rock formations. We spent 3-4 hours there before we headed back to the car. We got back just as it got dark. What a day and what a wonderful experience! The Wave is enchanting – with waves of textures and colors, plus lots of other interesting formations. We’re ready to go again!

Yellow Rock

We drove about 20 miles along the Cottonwood (dirt) Road to get to the trail head. The roads and trails have been quite muddy after recent snow, so we took it slow but had no problems. We crossed the still icy stream, hiked past the entrance to Hackberry Canyon and then up a very steep slope to the Yellow Rock overlook. I was very tired and wanted to make sure I could get back down the steep trail, so I relaxed while Doug hiked up Yellow Rock. When we crossed the stream to return to our truck we got wet! A lot of the ice had melted since we crossed the first time…there weren’t as many places to step!

Above: Entrance to Hackberry Canyon

Yellow Rock (Doug is climbing the rock – he’s the small dark dot on the left, about 1/3 down
from the top)

Beautiful lichen…


I like to imagine what is what like for the Mormans when they first saw this area. It must have seemed like the promised land with the towering cliffs, deep valleys and the rushing river. It was named Zion for the biblical “City of God” by Isaac Behunin, the first settler. Each time we visit, I am impressed by Zion’s beauty and majesty. It is truly grand.

The peak below is “Angel’s Landing”. You can hike to the top, using chains on the steep parts. It’s one of my hiking goals.

We saw 3 climbers climbing the rock cliff pictured here:

Although we had a sunny and fairly warm day, it was cold in the shadows. It will be a while before this ice thaws:

Wandering Around Bishop

Bishop, CA

Before we left Bishop, we took a number of hikes and took loads of photos at Southlake, Northlake, Lake Sabrina and Rock Creek. Fall was in full swing!

On our way to town one morning, we came across cyclists doing the “Everest Challenge” – a ride totaling 29,065 feet of elevation! What a ride!!!

On the road above our campground, going towards Northlake and Lake Sabrina:
Along the way

At the Creek below Lake Sabrina:

At Northlake:

Rock Creek:

The Everest Challengers:

Quaking Aspen

Bishop, CA

Quaking Aspen (Populus tremuloides) grow from Canada to Central Mexico, generally at elevations between 5,000 and 12,000 feet. The trees are quick growing and generally reach 66 to 82 feet. They grow primarily through root sprouts, in extensive clonal colonies. Each colony is its own clone; all trees in the clone share a single root system and have identical characteristics. Usually all the trees in the colony are the same sex. Although they do produce seeds, aspen trees seldom grow from seeds.

One clonal aspen colony, named Pando, is considered the largest single living organism and is approximately 80,000 years old! Pando is located in the Fishlake National Forest in South-Central Utah.

South Lake, a few miles from our campground, is a great place to view fall colors. We spent hours enjoying and photographing the aspens. From one angle, the leaves look very bright – almost like they are on fire; viewed from the opposite direction, they look flat, and past their prime.

While Doug climbed up a rock fall to check out a possible climbing route, I walked over to the creek. The fish were jumping like crazy. They were very small, but very active!

Paiute Pass

Eastern Sierra; West of Bishop, CA

Doug and I hiked from North Lake to Loch Leven, on the way to Paiute Pass. He dropped me at the trailhead and drove down the road 3/4 mile to park, intending to catch up with me on the trail. I had such a great time hiking and taking photos. After a mile or so, I stopped to wait for Doug – I expected he would have caught up with me. I waited a long time. Eventually some people coming down the trail told me they met a man who was looking for me! He had crossed the stream a different way and we had missed each other! I scurried up to meet him and then we hiked to the lake and had some lunch. By that time, I was pretty tired, so I hiked down to the car; Doug went up to the Pass and then returned to the car.

Tuolumne Domes & Early Women Explorers

Tioga Road, the highest trans-Sierra route in California, crosses Tioga Pass at 9,945 feet and enters Tuolumne Meadows, at the eastern side of Yosemite National Park. The broad meadow provides beautiful views in every direction including the Cathedral range (Cathedral Peak, Pywiack Dome and Medlicott Dome), Mt. Dana and Lembert Dome. There a many other domes in Tuolumne including Stately Pleasure Dome, Polly Dome, Pothole Dome, Fairview Dome and Daff Dome (Dome Across From Fairview). The Tuolumne River, the John Muir Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail run through Tuolumne Meadows; the trail to Mt. Lyell, the highest peak in Yosemite, starts in Tuolumne. It’s one of our favorite places to hike and explore. We avoid Yosemite Valley most of the time because of the crowds.


In 1896,  the Sweet Sisters (Stella, Bertha & Mabel), along with their friend Maybel Davis, climbed Mt. Lyell, the highest mountain in the Park. They were dressed in leggings, bloomers and big hats. They took a short cut down the glacier, at “a mile a minute”. They were the third group of women to climb Mt. Lyell; the first group to descend to Tuolumne Canyon.

Sally Dutcher was the first woman to climb Half Dome (1875).

Kitty Tatch and Katherine Hazelston danced and did high kicks on Overhanging Rock – 3,000 feet above the Valley on Glacier Point:

Liz Robbins was the first woman to ascend the Northwest face of Half Dome in 1967 (with her husband, Royal).

Bev Johnson and Sybille Hectell completed the first all-female ascent of El Capitan.