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Header Photo: Just an average hike on an average day in Red Canyon Country.



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Friday, November 8, 2013

An Ideal Loop Hike...Chinle Trail to Scoggins Wash to Coal Pits Wash, With a Detour Through Disneyland


Ok, so even if it was a little bit further and more difficult than I remembered (sue me!) and outside the norm of one of Life's Little Adventures... I think Jim and Gayle will have to admit (as soon as legs recover) that it was a glorious day of hiking in Zion's Wilderness and worthwhile.


Not yet fully investing trust in their volunteer guides, I'm pretty gol' darn sure that Jim will never ever again forget to bring some survival gear and his little GPS thingy. Yes, there were fleeting moments in time when reality did not match up with memory...when I might have let a look of bewilderment supplant my normal confident demeanor. Indeed, leaping from dry waterfall ledges in narrow walled canyons was not in the information packet (man, there have must have been some real gully washers since we last hike these canyons back in the early 2000's). But we I, rather, decided that we could go anywhere a horse could go (even tho I had no idea where it was going) and thus followed its tracks downstream...hoping it had a better memory than me, and was headed to where Jim and Gayle left their car parked. 

It's funny (not "ha ha funny, more like when your dentist goes "Oh shit, did that hurt?) the way some people (Jim) deal with stressful situations by using humor. He certainly kept the mood light with adolescent jocularity, mispronunciations of the elusive "Coal Pits Wash," and general quick witted responses to negative stimuli, especially given the rapid approach of darkness and the fact that he might be spending the night far from the comfort of his Lazy Daze RV bed.

Washes were strewn with boulders of all sizes and shapes, detours that took a while to find, and leaps from dry waterfalls that were slightly beyond comfort zones. Not to jinx anyone, but given the late hour I thought it necessary to remind our group to watch every step, that we didn't have the luxury of time to have someone slow the group exit with some little sprained ankle or compound fracture. About that time, Gayle's muddy shoes lost traction on an inclined boulder...so I shut the fuck up and tried to act confident that "Cold Pits" was just around the next corner. When that didn't come to fruition, I employed the military/magicians tactic of distraction, "Oh, would you look at that gorgeous sunset glinting off the mountains!"

Every once in a while I would lose my reassuring horse tracks and panic, "Did I miss a turn? Did it die trying to get through that last maze of boulders? Did he give up and turn around?" But magically (I swear, he must have had wings) the tracks would reappear and quell self doubts.  

Now admittedly, "Cold Tar" was a bit further than I recalled...by about two miles. Two miles of stumbling down a shadowed, multiple flash flooded wash gives one a lot of time to think. Jim said his life kept flashing before his eyes. I wondered if I needed to retain a good civil attorney when this hike was all said and done. Needless to say, Jim will never ever forget his GPS again, and might even consider earlier starting times from now on :)

The Box Canyon Gang...alive and well in Zion! 
































19 comments:

  1. Glad the 'close' call was just that, a close call. How ever would I cope while four of my favorite tour guides were lost in the wilderness. When will Mark be out of the dog house?

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  2. Disneyland look alive and well! Thanks Mark, your postcards are entertaining....and you have a way with words that inspires and awakes the soul...thanks for that, as well..

    Laverne

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  3. Well, I sometimes get lost to find myself, but not THAT lost.

    Glad it turned out well. Memorable adventures are often a bit harrowing like that.

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  4. Sounds like my kind of day!
    Awesome pics as usual! Thanks Mark!

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  5. Same thing happened to my sis and I when hiking above a private cabin near Meredith. We followed an old logging road up...then turned east through a few meadows filled with wildflowers...soon we found a nice clearing at top that gave us awesome views had lunch and then later began to retrace our steps...but an hr later no logging road! Finally I said well we know the cabin is at the foot of this mountain...so we bushwhacked down...got in mud and lots of deadfall to hop over but FINALLY we saw the cabin off in the distance!!! A welcome sight!!

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  6. Sounds like a heck of a ride. Glad you all found your way back unscathed. Gorgeous country and beautiful shots.

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  7. I love the skull-like rocks! At least you were pseudo lost in a gorgeous setting...

    Metamorphosis Lisa

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  8. Mark, I had complete confidence in you. Jim just enjoys giving you a hard time!
    Gayle

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  9. Did you get into the upper coal pits wash? I love all that swirly, rocky landscape. Pics are really terrific. You can tell I'm missing the Southwest!

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  10. For those few folks left on the globe that haven't met Mark and Bobbie there is something you should know and we did know this before we started out on this hike. When they tell you it's a 5 mile hike you should add 5 miles just to be safe and when they tell you it has little to no elevation gain bring the portable oxygen tank. Consider yourself warned.

    We did have faith that if we could stay up with Bobbie, no easy task, we would find our way back to pizza and beer.

    Jim

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  11. Well if you're going to get lost somewhere this sure looks like gorgeous enough country to do it in. Wonder if they will ever hike with you again.

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  12. I still hope to go hiking with you guys sometime, but am not too sure that you could convince me to "jump" anywhere.

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  13. Hey Everyone,
    Check out Jim and Gayle's Life's Little Adventures blog on my sidebar for their version of the same hike :)

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  14. Before long, people are going to start referring to the BCB as the "Boot Camp Blog." LOL! You junkie, you!!! ;-)

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    1. Boot Camp Blog...I like it :)
      At this late juncture in life... on the potential cusp of being relegated to sitting around in a nursing home with nothing to do, look forward too, or reason to live...I am "balls out" about trying to make up for lost time. Sleep when your dead, baby, this is the waning years of our only shot. At least that's how I see it. And besides, it's fun :))

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  15. Mark, wasn't it the Chinle Trail that started a hike last year that ended up being a little 12 mile day! I do believe that you exhausted the people that went that day, also. I can't remember who it was though, but probably the Wise-Ones! Maybe this isn't a good area for you to venture with others! Haha!

    From what I have read in your blog, Jim hit the nail on the head!! Glad you brought everyone back alive! Sounds like a great day:)

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    1. Uh...that could be. The Wiseone Susan was one tired girl after that...for like a couple days. Then we took her on the Subway hike...even worse :). I think she likes the memory of our outings more than the actual doing of them :) But if you are going to keep up with Bobbie, these are the things you need to do :)

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    2. I just thought it was funny that I was reading about hikes "gone way long" on the same trail!! Jim's comment was priceless about hiking with guys:) You do lead great adventures. Hope to one day experience one of these!

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