- Feb 15, 2013
We sat around the fire telling tales until after midnight. Sometimes you hear a story from someone you know and then you realize, with the story told that you never really know folks. Everyone seems to have a back story.
Up in the cool of the morning we do the 30 minute drive to the trail head. The start is low elevation desert and drops lower still. Saguaros and prickly pear cactus is everywhere growing in the sandy soil. When one first glimpses the pink granite and green blue water, first revealed by the the sound of rushing water, the sense is of an oasis in the desert. Three years earlier Jenny and I made the walk down only to find water too high for our comfort. Ten years earlier I did the canyon twice in 4 days, once with just Todd, the other with a large crew of wonderful folks. I was anxious to return and still owe Jenny a "run through" this lovely canyon, in the future.
On this day the sun was warm, the water inviting and the sky blue. I have only done the canyon in January and February, when the current has some bite, the low lighting casts wonderful shadows and the algae has not bloomed yet. We leave the desert a few feet away and feel the coolness coming off the water and suit up. Travel is made slick by the wet granite, polished from the flow. Travel is easier rock hopping or with the stabilizing effect of waist deep water or more. Knee high water? A bit more challenging. There are a few challenges.....slab bypasses, grooves leading one into the swiftest current. It often looks more dangerous than it is. There always seems to be a place to stand safely before the drops. Long wades and swims in lovely pools connect the dots of the passage, with the one rappel near the end. Describe the place in 2 words? "It sparkles." We swallow most of the day moving causally and cautiously. Pictures? I have some not too spotted by water on the lens and again, Todd has the true gems that I hope he shares later.
Sharps on approach
And here is Todd's awesome pictures of the day