Cache day. Round Valley Draw slot canyon day. CDT friend day. Beautiful Hackberry Canyon day. (More notes to get filled in. But I have been given a curfew. Hiking on tomorrow and marmots are better walkers with rest.)
Day 28: 17.7 miles; 420.0 miles total. Camp by Cottonwood tank to bend of Hackberry Canyon south of Stone Donkey.
GPS: used once but not really helpful; people sighted: Pepper Flake! On the AZT-Hayduke combo. We hopscotched with him for more than 2,000 miles of the CDT; roads: about 6 miles at the start of the day.
Grosvenor Arch in the chill of morning.
Mukmuk dug up our cache.
Pepper Flake and Marmot. I thought it was him from a distance. What a delightful surprise. Happy trails PF!
There are actually five hikers in this picture: Gabriel, Daybreaker, Runaway, Pepper Flake, and Marmot. Seeing a familiar track or name in a register often feels like we are sharing the trail.
Gabriel ponders the slot entry. I’ll fill in the details later, but it was about 90 minutes later before we finally went in.
Looking up. Entering the slot was good fun thanks to well placed tree branch.
Round Valley Draw with elbow room.
Bouldery at times.
And soon enough we went from Round Valley Draw to Hackberry Canyon.
This canyon is used for cattle grazing in the winter. The barbed wire fence on the opposite side of the wall.
Amazing walls of Navajo sandstone.
Desert varnish and a marmot.
Grow pinyon grow.
Nice colors and seams.
Details in the rock are beautiful. I could be happy and mesmerized by just a half mile of this canyon.
Turn one more bend and we go from dry sandy wash to cottonwoods and water. Such transitions!
Lush Hackberry Canyon.