Halls Creek Narrows, 4/6/13

Discussion in 'Backpacking' started by lostlandscapes, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. lostlandscapes

    lostlandscapes rope mule

    Messages:
    355
    We had our sites set on the Halls Creek Narrows for a quick yet robust overnighter full of Reef scampering. Not only would it be my first time strolling along the base of the Capitol Reef itself, but it'd also be my first time setting foot inside the Park, period. The last of the "Big 5" that I'd yet to visit since moving here a few years ago. Anticipation was up, and of course, I was not let down.

    The Waterpocket Fold, at first light. A break in the cliff allows loose and steep access to the valley floor:

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    Heading down Halls Creek. We began to hit brief but clean shallow pools of water within only one mile or so of the trailhead.

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    With plenty of time to kill, we spent a lot of the day exploring the Reef and all of it's glorious, convoluted madness:

    9588.jpg

    We set up camp on a nice, sandy bend under old Cottonwoods. But the day was not over. Time to visit the Narrows. Only minutes after first entering, the soaring walls of a grand alcove greeted us:

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    Continuing through the Narrows. At this point (and since approximately one mile before the Narrows started) water was a permanent companion:

    9617.jpg

    While never slotting up too much, the canyon does narrow enough to the point where in several places you have no choice but to get at least a little bit wet. Things would get much deeper later on:

    9625.jpg

    Soft, graceful curves beckoned:

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    The initial plan was to hike the entire Narrows and loop back around to camp via Halls Creek Divide. But about 2/3 of the way through a full-on swimmer kept us from proceeding further. With the weather cooling off as the daylight faded, we decided it was best for at least one of us to stay dry and head back to camp the way we had arrived.

    Halls Creek provided a lush and enchanting introduction to the mesmerizing beauty of Capitol Reef. Can't wait to get back for more.

    Featured Image for Home Page:
    slide.jpg
     
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  2. Dan

    Dan Member

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    576
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    Good thing one of us stayed dry... Ha!
     
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  3. Ericephoto

    Ericephoto Member

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    14
    Beautiful! Capitol Reef remains my favorite of the big 5. Heading there in a few days! Love the photos too:)
     
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  4. Yvonne

    Yvonne I lava it!!!

    Messages:
    2,458
    Location:
    Pahoa, HI
    I love Capitol Reef, one of my favorite places. And your shots make me really exited for our planned trip mid May
     
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  5. Laura

    Laura freespirittraveler

    Messages:
    937
    Location:
    San Diego
    Awesome! Capitol Reef is probably my favorite park in Utah. How many miles was it to the narrows portion?
     
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  6. Dan

    Dan Member

    Messages:
    576
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    We took the airstrip shortcut, probably less than 6 miles is my guess. Couple hours hiking.
     
  7. Cody

    Cody Member

    Messages:
    100
    I love it down there. Great shots!
     
  8. Dave

    Dave Broadcaster, formerly "ashergrey"

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    1,563
    Location:
    SL,UT
    Beautiful pictures. South end of Capitol Reef is soooo underrated.
     
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  9. Michael

    Michael Alien from over the pond...

    Messages:
    752
    Location:
    FFM
    Wonderful pictures and report!
    I add it to my bucket list.
    And I fully agree w/ ashergray, if I see here on BCP all your fantastic impressions.
     
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  10. slc_dan

    slc_dan Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior

    Messages:
    1,433
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    A swimmer?!? crazy.

    When NateGeesaman and I went down July 2012 the deepest spot was knee to low thigh.

    Thanks for the TR. I believe Nick is down there right now!

    Lower Muley for me this week. :)
     
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  11. Jammer

    Jammer ❤2Hike

    Messages:
    573
    Location:
    Los Angeles -- most of the time
    Great report. I absolutely love that featured photo.

    - Jamal
     
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  12. Ericephoto

    Ericephoto Member

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    14
    Apparently we all like Capitol Reef? My kind of people!!
     
  13. Christian

    Christian Member

    Messages:
    155
    Location:
    Salt Lake City, Utah
    That alcove shot is so great! Print that one out!
     
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  14. pixie1339

    pixie1339 Desperately Seeking Sandstone

    Messages:
    1,688
    Location:
    Draper, UT
    Awesome pics! I can't wait to see this place. Only one more month!!!
     
  15. AustinCronnelly

    AustinCronnelly Butte Rat

    Messages:
    116
    Great pictures Tim! I agree with Jamal, that alcove shot is unreal.
     
  16. Jammer

    Jammer ❤2Hike

    Messages:
    573
    Location:
    Los Angeles -- most of the time
    How tough was the descent? Easy to spot going down and coming back?

    - JG
     
  17. lostlandscapes

    lostlandscapes rope mule

    Messages:
    355
    Very easy to spot, from both directions. From the top, the road basically ends at the drop in (a faint 4-track continues south from here, but we didn't explore it). From the bottom (Halls Creek), the break in the cliff stands out as an obvious weakness. The route itself is fairly well cairned, but steep and loose in it's entirety. Probably want to put your hiking poles away--there are a few spots that require quadrupedalism.
     
  18. powderglut

    powderglut In search of Fresh

    Messages:
    313
    Location:
    Steamboat Spgs Co
    This area of Capitol Reef is so cool. I've been thru bits and pieces of it, with us coming up short of Brimhall Bridge. (Swimming issue.) The narrows of Hall's Creek are definitely on the short list. Thanks for a beautiful report.
     
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  19. NateGeesaman

    NateGeesaman Donkey

    Messages:
    272
    Great stuff! Convoluded madness shot is my personal fave. Looks like it is hiding something nice back there. Was the turn around spot here?[​IMG]
    Halls Creek Dan 2 by NateGeesaman, on Flickr
     
  20. NateGeesaman

    NateGeesaman Donkey

    Messages:
    272
    I was able to stem over that pool using every inch of my 6'1'' frame when I visited :D
     
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