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Friday, November 8, 2019

"New Dots" In A Slanted Slot

I've decided, in the interest of keeping the BCB "fresh," to randomly intersperse some of our better "Real Time" outings...just to keep readers awake.  We took a little hike yesterday. I say "little" because it was short, but oh-so-sweet.

Sometimes the best hikes are right under your nose. We've been camping near Zion every fall for decades, exploring outside the main corridor for the most part because, more and more, it's thronged nuts-to-butts with fellow tourists...who, like us, now spill into surrounding backcountry in order to have a more solitary, natural experience. Who would think, that right under our snobby noses...next to a gigantic parking lot...there existed such a treasured slot with not a single soul beyond us between its walls.

The alternative Park Highway beyond the the main corridor, snakes up vertiginous cliffs and through an unlikely tunnel...blasted into the sheer mountainside during the 1920's.

It's a beautiful drive...a work of art and engineering prowess, considering the construction time-frame.  

But as is the trend for all National Parks, one can scarcely find a vacant parking spot these days. With few exceptions, we typically drive beyond the more popular roadside trails, choosing instead to explore and route-find in nameless canyons without parking lots. 

One of those exceptions happened last week, while showing Pal Chris and his lovely, outdoor daughter, Juliet, one of our favorite climbs up to the East Temple.

"Vanna" Juliet
Chris and Bobbie found a way to make a loop hike out of it by exiting through Pine Canyon. Even better. NEW DOTS.

Lending Bobbie a rope...

Though not for the faint of heart and acrophobic types, this East Temple loop provides an exhilarating route through the heart of some of the best Zion has to offer...and we saw not one other person all day. Just us and bighorn sheep, during mating season :)  

More on that hike later. I only bring it up because it's how we stumbled across today's slanted slot hike. One of our reference books mentioned that when attempting to connect East Temple with Pine Canyon, DO NOT MAKE THE MISTAKE OF CONFUSING IT WITH A PARALLEL SLOT CANYON, lest you fall to your death and final resting place. 
A slot canyon, eh? 

Note to selves: Explore slot canyon between East Temple and Pine Canyon...from the bottom up, not top down. 

And that slot canyon is the subject of today's post...        

Getting skinny...

Lots of choke-stone rockfall to overcome


Oh boy...here we go again. Miss you Chris and Juliet :)
Check back for Part II!!!
Peace out from Wanderland,
mark and bobbie


  1. Vertiginous cliffs, choke-stone rockfall, I always learn new words from you! And that last photo, you got us all on a cliff-hanger!

  2. Shelf Canyon looks so amazing! Was pretty jealous to see those pics you emailed and to read about it here. Aw well, there are future years...


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