Grandeur Peak - Dagon's Tail Route - November 21, 2021

scatman

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Well, the weekend warrior was back at it today with a hike to the summit of Grandeur Peak via the Dragon's Tail Route.

It was a balmy 28 degrees at the trailhead just before 8:00 am. Unfortunately there was a strong wind blowing out of Parleys Canyon which made the beginning of this hike quite chilly. Once I was able to get up alongside the dragon's tail, the winds calmed down and I was good to go. It had rained in the valley on Saturday, and the top of Grandeur got an inch, to an inch and a half of snow. This made for some slick footing, especially on the way down, and of course I took a spill on the descent. :)

While I ascended on the Dragon's Tail Route, I descended the Western Slope Trail, which is located one ridge to the north of the Dragon's Tail Route. Once the sunshine reached me, it turned into a beautiful day, and once again this week, the skies were clear and the air quality was good, which made views from the top very nice.

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View from just above the trailhead in the early morning

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Beanie time

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View of Grandeur from the west in the morning

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Ice in the puddles

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Obligatory shot of Mount Olympus to the south. That snow wasn't there last weekend.

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You can see the west end of the Dragon's Tail above

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I swear spurge is taking over Utah! :mad:

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Sunrise on Parleys Ridge to the north

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The Dragon's Tail dead ahead

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Frost on the common storksbill

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Almost to the top of the curve of the Dragon's Tail. Still need my beanie
at this point

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The sun finally hits the Dragon's Tail

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Hey, the headless horseman! :)

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Rounding the curve in the Dragon's Tail

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The bicycle cap is back! Soaking up some sunshine before continuing on.

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Not sure if you can make them out, but there are fossilized sea shells in
the limestone

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Parleys Ridge coming into view

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I call this "Taming the dragon." :)

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A small natural arch in the upper portion of the Dragon's Tail

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A look down at the eat end of the Dragon's Tail

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First snow on the trail

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Mountain Mahogany time

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A good sized hawk above me

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First good view of the summit of Grandeur

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Following the spine of the ridge now

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Looking back on a small scramble section

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Dead mountain mahogany on the ridge

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Ice in the mountain mahoganies near the summit

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Close-up of the ice

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Summit shot

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Views from the summit looking east - Church Fork Peak and Mount Aire beyond, along the ridgeline

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Views from the summit looking southeast - Gobblers Knob and Mount Raymond

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Views from the summit looking north - Dale Peak on Parleys Ridge with Grandview Peak and Lookout Peak along the furthest ridge

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View from the summit looking ever so slightly southeast - Milvue Peak, Murdock Peak and Gobblers Knob once again

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I liked the looks of this lone conifer as I began to head down

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More mountain Mahogany along the ridge

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A quick peek back up at the summit of Grandeur, but this time from the West Slope Trail

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Dropping down into the drainage on my way back to the valley

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An afternoon shot from the west. This is the same shot I took earlier in the morning before sunrise, but now you can see it. :)
You can make out part of the Dragon's Tail at the upper right of the image.

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The Sube eagerly awaits near the trailhead!


The End
 
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Very nice, weekend warrior! Yah, that was a bit spicy with all that wind yesterday. One strong gust yesterday moved the Merrels and me sideways, ever had that happen? I’m guessing you might now suggest practicing on a Bosu in a wind tunnel! And the spurge… yes, super invasive, spreads everywhere under the right conditions.
 
Very nice, weekend warrior! Yah, that was a bit spicy with all that wind yesterday. One strong gust yesterday moved the Merrels and me sideways, ever had that happen? I’m guessing you might now suggest practicing on a Bosu in a wind tunnel! And the spurge… yes, super invasive, spreads everywhere under the right conditions.

About twenty years ago, my neighbors directly across the street from me moved. The new people that moved in replaced the grass in the parking strip with spurge. I had never seen it before and my wife had to tell me what it was. Soon it would take over their entire front yard. Maybe five or six years after they planted it, I started to see it on my way down to City Creek Canyon from 11th Avenue, along the side of the road and up on the hillsides a bit. A couple of years after that Salt Lake organized a spurge cleanup to pull it and discard of it. Sheila and I volunteered the first couple of years to help remove it. Unfortunately it wasn't enough, as I began to see it in lower City Creek. Now, I have seen it within a rocks throw of the water treatment plant that is located between 3 and 3.5 miles up the canyon, and in the spring I can see it blooming way up on some of the steep hillsides of the canyon. I haven't seen it yet above the treatment plant, but it is only a matter of time. It broke my heart yesterday to see it at the base of Grandeur. :cry: I'm not sure if my neighbors planting it started it off, but like I said I had never seen it before in this area of town at least.
 
About twenty years ago, my neighbors directly across the street from me moved. The new people that moved in replaced the grass in the parking strip with spurge. I had never seen it before and my wife had to tell me what it was. Soon it would take over their entire front yard. Maybe five or six years after they planted it, I started to see it on my way down to City Creek Canyon from 11th Avenue, along the side of the road and up on the hillsides a bit. A couple of years after that Salt Lake organized a spurge cleanup to pull it and discard of it. Sheila and I volunteered the first couple of years to help remove it. Unfortunately it wasn't enough, as I began to see it in lower City Creek. Now, I have seen it within a rocks throw of the water treatment plant that is located between 3 and 3.5 miles up the canyon, and in the spring I can see it blooming way up on some of the steep hillsides of the canyon. I haven't seen it yet above the treatment plant, but it is only a matter of time. It broke my heart yesterday to see it at the base of Grandeur. :cry: I'm not sure if my neighbors planting it started it off, but like I said I had never seen it before in this area of town at least.

Whoa…. thanks for sharing. Sad story, but that’s exactly how it starts. Very difficult once it gets out of control like that. We get a lot of compliments about the “wonderful looking spurge” popping up everywhere around a hot stone patio out front (planted 1 plant a decade ago)…. Those I can easily pull, but birds may pick up the seeds too and it spreads… Im concerned about 1 ornamental grass (Adagio), which has escaped to the edge of the property close to wetlands. The best is to not plant any invasive species :cry:
 
@scatman I have loved reading about all of these weekend trips you do. How long does it take you to get to most of the trailheads?
 
@scatman I have loved reading about all of these weekend trips you do. How long does it take you to get to most of the trailheads?

Glad you like the reports @swmalone. It takes me about 25 minutes to drive to the Mount Olympus Trailhead from my house, and probably 20 to reach the Grandeur Peak Trailhead. I could probably shave a few minutes off if traffic is light and I don't hit any red lights along the way.

As for the foothill hikes, at least this fall, I have just been heading out my front door and walking to the trailheads. Normally when I drive to them though, it can take anywhere from 5 - 10 minutes depending on which one I'm heading to.
 
Guess nobody worries about the dyers woad...... It's as bad or worse
 
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Glad you like the reports @swmalone. It takes me about 25 minutes to drive to the Mount Olympus Trailhead from my house, and probably 20 to reach the Grandeur Peak Trailhead. I could probably shave a few minutes off if traffic is light and I don't hit any red lights along the way.

As for the foothill hikes, at least this fall, I have just been heading out my front door and walking to the trailheads. Normally when I drive to them though, it can take anywhere from 5 - 10 minutes depending on which one I'm heading to.
I'm rather envious of your access to these trailheads. The closest for me is the Wellsvilles and I have to drive around to the East side for access. I am keeping track of these hikes you post for possible excursions for exploring areas we haven't spent much time on since moving to Utah.
 
I'm rather envious of your access to these trailheads. The closest for me is the Wellsvilles and I have to drive around to the East side for access. I am keeping track of these hikes you post for possible excursions for exploring areas we haven't spent much time on since moving to Utah.

Yes, I'm lucky as far as access is concerned. Well, if you are ever down this way and want some company on a hike, just let me know. If you give me a little bit of notice, I should be able to fit it in.

I haven't hiked in the Wellsvilles since I was in college. I hiked up twice to Bob Stewart Peak and Wellsville Cone from the Sardine Canyon side back in 1984 and again in 85. I need to get to the peaks further north along the ridgeline someday. Maybe this summer I can fit one of them in.
 
Guess nobody worries about the dyers woad...... It's as bad or worse

The woad has been there since I've been hiking the area, so it didn't affect me as much as the spurge going hog wild I guess.
 
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