“I cannot even imagine where I would be today were it not for that handful of friends who have given me a heart full of joy. Let’s face it, friends make life a lot more fun.” Charles R. Swindoll
In a previous post about Druid Arch I mentioned meeting folks that form a hiking group here in Moab. Well, my last two weeks here my social calendar has been full of great new adventures with these wonderful people. Every Tuesday and Saturday this group meets to hike to a new (for me anyway) and exciting location. The hikes are generally 6-8 miles and they enjoy the little known trails and enjoy even more those treks into areas where there are no trails.
Frequently the group gathers during a hike to huddle and debate “how do we get up there….”. The result is not only a great group of people but a new adventure each hike.
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”
– Anais Nin
As you can imagine there were many opportunities for this traveler to get way outside her comfort zone when it comes to heights.
But thanks to the supportive (verbally, emotionally and physically!) members of the group I achieved much more than I would have ever thought possible. “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” was certainly my mantra on many of these hikes!
The slick rock has some great traction – it’s like walking on sandpaper. A good thing when the slope is steep! Sand on the slick rock or water soaked algae can make for a slippery surface on otherwise good footing.
In addition to hiking there was an opportunity to give back to the community. Volunteering to work an aid station for “The Other Half”, the fall half marathon. Up early on a Sunday carpooling to the location and setting up the aid station as the sun was rising. Over 1,100 runners worked their way along the route with the help of our water and Gatorade of course!
In this post I want to share some of the images of the incredible hikes – the photos certainly do not capture the true “awe” of the places we visited.
Off Mill Canyon Road the Monitor & Merrimac trailhead lead us to some interesting rock art & fossilized dinosaur bones.
After climbing to the top of the butte across from Courthouse Rock we located some very interesting formations including a crack that stretched across the south side of the butte and an interesting pool dubbed the “Delta Pool” because of it’s shape. From the top of the butte we could see off in the distance “Determination Towers”, a rock climbers paradise.
It had rained the night before so the butte was littered with small pools of water trapped after the storm. Reflections of the clouds in the pools made for beautiful scenery and great photo opportunities looking across to Courthouse Rock.
The Lathrop Trail hike started out on a marked trail in Canyonlands National Park. Across the top then down into the canyon the views were beautiful.
Up in the Sand Flats Recreation Area a hike into Mill Creek Canyon was on the agenda for this day. Visited some really cool rock art on the side of the canyon (off trail of course!).
There was also some good fall foliage in the canyon along the creek.
On the way out of the canyon we ran across the “yellow machine” an old tractor abandoned many years ago along the trail.
The women in this group are truly an inspiration to me. They come from a variety of backgrounds and locations and are a great group of healthy, happy active individuals. Looking forward to returning to Moab and spending more time with them!
“There’s so much boldness in living life this way, and we did it all, and no one can take it away from us.” Diana Nyad