Sunday, February 12, 2012

Death Valley Day #5

Breakfast burritos at General Store.

Drive through Titus Canyon Road. Went through Red Pass - v. beautiful, annoying illegal backcountry packers right at pass, intrigued by thimble peak. Beautiful ride down.

Got to Leadfield - advertised as ghost town, sore disapointment for Mabel, David still relativey excited, only a few structures, one site had v. nice views, should have been called ruins.

Rest of titus canyon pretty, narrows.

Saw hikers, didn't seem like ideal hike given the cars. Stopped for petroglyph.

Dave satisfied. Realized in retrospect that puddles on road were Klare Spring, oh well.

Stovepike Wells for burgers and gas, grateful for day off.

Ubehebe Crater, quite a site, realized from volcano, not meteor. Wished we had time to walk around or go down to bottom

Very bumpy ride to Racetrack playa, survived, saw beautiful joshua tree grove, like army of spiky, goofy humanoid plants.

Eerie grandstand of rocks, why is it in the middle like that? Amazing cracked bottom, extremely flat. Saw racing rocks with trails, amazing.

Drove back up past lost burro pass, past rest spring, missed dry bone canyon wash, almost made it to bighorn canyon wash, found awesome camp site, harrowing drive. Set up camp, roaring life-sustaining fire, other campfires twinkling in distance.

Quiet, beautiful, nearly full moon, indian food for dinner (in pouches).

Death Valley Day #4

Slit canyon-a secret canyon.

Early start, 3 mile gravel road, breakfast at hole in the wall.

Twin falls, beautiful with grey stone and chutes.

Dave climbed 2nd fall with some difficulty, stressful for mabel to watch.

Bypassed 3 falls via "stable" talus, went through slit, a v. narrow canyon.

12-foot fall "easily bypassed on right" - v. stressful for mabel, eventually got up and over

Found sticky plants clinging to our pants

50 foot fall, spectacular.

Approach to fall

50 foot fall
Bypassed with unstable talus, pretty high up, lots of loose gravel, dangerous.

Meandered onto several sets of narrows - all v. beautiful, a "glen of stone."

Funny cacti.

Lunch at beginning of 3rd narrows, stopped by 9 foot fall, dave passed, mabel too tired. Turned back, 2nd bypass pretty harrowing, probably most dangerous thing we have done, got down safely.

Saw tarantula, dave took bazillion pictures, dave thought it was so cool, mabel grossed out

Dreaded climb down 12-foot fall, mabel almost cried, leap of faith with foot placement, dave went down first and helped, extremely grateful to be alive and not on the bottom of some canyon with bleeding heads and unconscious. Went back through 1st talus, not too excited about it but got down safely. Made it back to Hole in the Wall with just a sliver of daylight left.

Happy to be alive