2024 CO Plateau conditions

fossana

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Starting this year's conditions thread.

Grand Canyon N Rim (week of 2/11/2024)
Elevation range visited:
3900-5800'
Potholes: full
Roads: some mud/snow
Biting insects: none

SW UT (week of 2/18/2024)
Elevation range visited:
3000-6000'
Potholes: full
Roads: some mud/snow
Biting insects: cedar gnats emerging at 5K, annoying at 3K
 
SW UT (3/14-3/21)
Elevation range visited:
3000-5000'
Potholes: still have water
Roads: minimal mud, but more rain coming
Biting insects: some cedar gnats
Wildflowers: emerging
 
Much of Cedar Mesa saw rain and snow last week 3/17-3/24. There was water everywhere, but that can change quickly with some sunny days.
There were some cedar gnats starting to come out when it was warm. Barely an annoyance to what they are later. The cottonwoods were starting to leaf out by Hite when we drove home... I love that neon green.
 
From 3/11 to 3/23 we walked from Hanksville to Hite on the east side of the Dirty Devil. It rained lightly for 3 nights and one evening. Some potholes filled, shallow ones were already dry at the end. Small amounts of snow lingered in the shade above 6800' by 3/21. I would call the water availability in that region medium-challenging right now.

South Block 3/22:

block.jpg
 
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From 3/11 to 3/23 we walked from Hanksville to Hite on the east side of the Dirty Devil. It rained lightly for 3 nights and one evening. Some potholes filled, shallow ones were already dry at the end. Small amounts of snow lingered in the shade above 6800' by 3/21. I would call the water availability in that region medium-challenging right now.
Thanks--Could you talk about specific canyons, such as Happy/French Spring, Sam's Mesa, or up on the Block? Were conditions similar to late spring vs. early spring in terms of the challenge?
edit... ah, thanks for adding that pic of the Block!
 
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Thanks--Could you talk about specific canyons, such as Happy/French Spring, Sam's Mesa, or up on the Block? Were conditions similar to late spring vs. early spring in terms of the challenge?
The rain was light but widespread - most of SE Utah got hit. All the canyons you mention flowed to varying degrees, and except Happy they will be good for a while. The Blocks have only one dependable water area, mentioned in Allen's book: the southernmost neck on the South Block. I would hurry if you want to use those potholes.
 
Grand Canyon N Rim (week of 3/24/2024)
Elevation range visited:
3900-5800'
Potholes: sparse water, but it's supposed to rain starting this evening
Roads: clear prior to incoming storm
Biting insects: a few mosquitoes and cedar gnats
Wildflowers: emerging

[edit] + photos

gc1.jpeg

gc2.jpeg
 
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Escalante area, March 27-30, 5400-5900 ft, with afternoon temperatures @55-60F we had many small annoying flies (cedar gnats?) buzzing around our heads. Very windy week. Rain arriving this evening.
 
Escalante area, March 27-30, 5400-5900 ft, with afternoon temperatures @55-60F we had many small annoying flies (cedar gnats?) buzzing around our heads. Very windy week. Rain arriving this evening.
We're heading there 3 weeks from today. I've started checking the weather and will be glad if things warm up a bit between now and then!
 
SW UT (week of 3/31/2024)
Elevation range visited:
3000-6000'
Potholes: water remaining after the most recent storm; recent snow has also melted off at the lower elevations (6-7K')
Biting insects: a few cedar gnats

PXL_20240404_175413249.jpeg
 
Southern Escalante/Glen Canyon (week of 4/7/2024)
Elevation range visited: 42
00-5000'
Potholes: prolific water, but some exposed potholes have dried up
Roads: HTTR road washboardy after first few miles
Biting insects: minor mosquitoes, cedar gnats, deer flies
Wildflowers: emerging
Poison ivy: leaves emerging in sunny locations

PXL_20240410_134207700.jpeg
 
Thanks for this info, @fossana. I've been checking weather and road conditions in anticipation of our Coyote Gulch trip in about a week, and your details are helpful. I know things can change quickly, but would you guess that an AWD SUV will be ok on the washboarding as far as Red Well or Hurricane Wash? We didn't feel like driving a rental jeep all the way from Vegas.

Also, we're hoping to get to Yant Flat on our way back to Vegas, probably on 4/26. I know you live near there; would you guess the road from Leeds will be ok then? Is that road ok if it rains? Or do we need to stay away when it's wet?
 
You'll be fine for Red Well or Hurricane Wash. The road has been graded, and there aren't any huge ruts. TBH, I've gotten to the S Lobo water tank TH with front wheel drive.

Yant Flat TH should also be accessible. If it rains significantly in the interim, I'll go preview the road conditions for you.
 
You'll be fine for Red Well or Hurricane Wash. The road has been graded, and there aren't any huge ruts. TBH, I've gotten to the S Lobo water tank TH with front wheel drive.

Yant Flat TH should also be accessible. If it rains significantly in the interim, I'll go preview the road conditions for you.
Thanks so much - this is great!
 
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