Wednesday, April 30, 2008

High Spur

Paul and I were able to get down to Robber's Roost area for Friday night-Sat last week. What a beautiful canyon High Spur turned out to be.
We hit the road around 1:30pm on Friday... stopped for gas at Green River, and then continued to the head of BlueJohn canyon. We started hiking down BlueJohn around 7:00pm. We just wanted to make it to the first 2 rappels and climb back up them to practice our rescue skills. I don't have any pics of that, because it was pretty dark by the time we got out of there... but we didn't need our lights until we hit camp around 9:15. There we boiled some water, added it to our Mountain House dinners, and had a little fire.
This campsite is the tin shed. Normally, we haven't seen any other people down in the Roost. But there was a group of large tents near the tin shed. They were very quiet (more on that later). So around 10:30 we were getting ready to turn in for the night, and 5 vehicles (1 being a loud diesel truck) pulled up, ripping up the dust and searching with their headlights for a place to camp. Well, that was obnoxious, because we were going to be sleeping under the stars (on cots) and that would have to wait since they were so noisy.
We stoked back up the fire to wait out the noisiness, and a man approached us from the quiet group. He asked... "do you know anything about Larry Canyon?" Paul and I had done Larry Canyon last summer. So, this guy and his wife had come down from Sandy to fix a meal for the varsity scouts and their leaders and take the boys home in the morning who had to be back for sports on Saturday. Well, the group was supposed to be there for dinner at 7pm. Here it was 11:15pm and they hadn't heard from them. Hence, the quietness of the group. Had we known the situation, we would have gone over earlier and enjoyed a hot meal with 2 great folks. Paul happened to have the printout from climb utah website. So we explained to him how to drive down to the trailhead. As we were doing so, we thought, "what the hey, we are up anyway... the other group is still noisy... let's go down to the trailhead with him." So he brought his wife and SUV over to us and we headed down to the trailhead (about 15 minutes away). Well, the group's SUV was at the trailhead, so that meant they probably hadn't left the canyon. As we drove down toward the exit of the canyon (to the shuttle drop-off), the group came up the road in their vehicle.
At any rate, the group was safe, just very slow (normal time 4-5 hours... they took 11.5 hours) and had been a little lost. They had 8 boys and 4 "experienced" leaders. We all drove back and Paul and I got some much-needed sleep at about 12:30.
Oh, I almost forgot... Paul forgot his sleeping bag. He claims only real men don't need sleeping bags. Luckily the couple who drove us down to the trailhead had an extra blanket. I had also thrown in a couch cover before we left to line the back of the jeep (it gets a little loud without some insulation back there). So, between his 4-5 layers of clothes, 2 thermarests, a couch cover, my plaid fleece jacket, and the borrowed blanket, Paul made it through the night. His feet thawed out in the jeep as we headed down the road about 40 miles to High Spur.
We really wanted to do 2 canyons, but the commute to and from High Spur took so long to get to we weren't able to fit anything else in. But what a lovely canyon. Beautiful... and as all of my other canyons, we didn't see anyone else in or around the canyon.
Well, hope you enjoy the pictures. I took the nice camera down this canyon because there were no water hazards. And the "technical parts" were super easy. Except for the length factor (about 7 miles, I assume, in all) I would love to take Spence on this one when he is 8 or 9.
We hit Ray's Burgers in Green River on the way home (excellent burgers) and pulled in around 9:15pm Saturday. I consider myself very blessed to enjoy the wonders God has created. And thanks Amber for letting me break away. You're the best!

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I almost forgot... it started out a great trip... on our way up I-6 we saw 2 Golden Eagles dive bombing a Red-Tail Hawk. Talk about impressive. It sounds funny, but any day I see a Golden Eagle ends up being a great day.