Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Hiking Wild Horse Canyon

Summer has begun for reals! Even though the college kids have been out of school for 6 weeks, Anne just finished her Junior year Friday before Memorial Day. We weren't able to go anywhere that weekend, but the first of June we took a rather spontaneous trip to hike Wild Horse Canyon before Seth and Julie leave for their internship in New York. Seth had hiked it with friends about 6 years ago, and wanted to share it with the rest of us. It is located just about five miles outside Goblin Valley, which we saved for another trip! We weren't able to reserve a campsight, so we didn't go down and camp the night before as we originally intended. Instead, we got up and left home at 5 a.m., did the hike, and returned all in the same day! It was so fun and so worth it! 

The hike is shaped like a wishbone.  From the parking lot you hike up a dry wash for half a mile, then it branches into two slot canyons.  Bell Canyon is on the left, Wild Horse Canyon on the right.  We took the right fork into Wild Horse Canyon and followed it until it came out onto an ATV trail which we followed a couple of miles until it joined up with Bell Canyon which we followed back to the start.  All together we hiked about 8 miles.

Marissa and Walter are happy because they got to sleep the whole 3 hour drive down!

Julie, Walter and Seth, super hikers!  They were all troopers, Walter was so good and seemed to enjoy the hike, Julie and Seth took turns packing him, and even though they had to climb up and over or down and under obstacles, they managed just fine!

Stephen and Marissa pose by this tough old tree in the first half mile in the wash.

The slot canyon was full of interesting twists and turns, and even though it was quite narrow for the first couple of miles, it wasn't claustrophbic because you almost always could see the sun, and it opened up frequently, or else one side sloped up at an angle.

We did have to clamber up over some boulders pretty regularly.

Melanee came prepared with her camelback and hat.  We drank lots of water and avoided getting sunburned.

We all enjoyed taking a break to have a snack, even Walter!

Hiking was a team effort!

Stephen and Seth just had to take a few daredevil risks!

We stopped for lunch under an overhang to be out of the sun!

Leaving Wild Horse Canyon, and entering Bell Canyon! Nice to know we are on the right track!

Stephen carried Walter out of the pack for a couple of miles in the middle, giving Seth and Julie a nice break!

Seth and Julie hold hands hiking the ATV trail in between the Canyons.

Almost back to the start!

All six of us enjoyed this hike very much, and would recommend it as a fun, scenic hike to anyone who has a free day and sense of adventure!