Day 20 – 10/13/14 Monday
Couldn’t sleep much past 330am last night even though I was in a nice place along Hole in the Rock Road. I guess it was because I was very undecided on what to do in the morning. I wanted to drive to Dance Hall Rock about 37 miles down this dirt road for a shot of giant potholes atop massive stone outcrops with cottonwood trees growing inside the holes, but thought it was a long run for just one shot and I had to find them even though I had some directions, but searching would be just as it began to get light out; and what if I didn’t find them, it would be a total bust.
Another option was to go up to the top of Route 12 to catch the sunrise which I anticipated would be cloudless, then look for shots of the wonderful plants that grow along Calf Creek and then try to get to Calf Creek Falls before the sun hit them; a 2-1/2mile hike each way!! I opted for the second since I had the opportunity for three different things instead of one.
So I drove up there and scouted out the rocks and other things for the sunrise. Just before dawn, I found a dead tree facing west, but just below the rock, so it would not be lit by the sun right away. The sun came up and I took some uninspired (cloudless) pictures and then headed down to try to find some plant shots in the shade to accentuate the blue/green of many of the plants. I was almost totally shut out since it seemed that was no variety in the plants, mostly either the same plants, or similar color. I quickly drove to the trailhead for Calf Creek Falls, paid my 1/2 senior fee and started hiking in earnest. I didn’t want to stop and miss the race between the sun and the shade at the falls and passed up several shots that I thought were pretty neat, and I just kept hiking and hiking the 2-1/2 miles. Then, all of a sudden, who is coming in the opposite direction, (and I thought I was first on the trail) but Clarence and his buddy from the Kiva in Canyonlands!! I immediately asked if I was too late and the grim news was that I was, the sun was completely on the falls. None the less, I wished them well since they were heading home and spent the rest of the morning taking photos along the creek of trees that were in shadow, but also lit by the reflected light from the canyon wall!! Then back to the falls to sit, contemplate my navel and have a trail mix lunch. I spent the next two hours hiking back and taking more pictures and ended pretty much exhausted.
The rest of the day’s plan was to drive to Bryce Canyon and get a camp site, shoot the sunset tonight and sunrise tomorrow, and head for a real motel tomorrow in Cedar City where I will have to do laundry since I am almost out of clothes and have no socks or underwear left. I was hoping to do something like that on a rainy day, but all the rain occurred early in the trip in Colorado. I managed to get a reservation @ Motel 6 for tomorrow night and check-in is at 100pm.
Hopefully, I’ll have time to hike Karranville Canyon somewhere in there since the sunrise shouldn’t take too long, but we’ll see.