Contests and Cattails

Thanksgiving weekend was fairly typical this year, consisting of the usual gathering at my mom’s house on Thursday, plus a bit of outdoor fun thrown in on a couple of days. I got off work a bit early on Wednesday and decided to ride my ATV after having just gotten it back from repairs at the Honda dealer. I drove up the bottom of Pinnacle Canyon, which is often used by the King Crawlers in their full-sized rigs. The wash bottom was full of rocks and boulders, and after more than two miles of that, the rocks became more annoying than fun and challenging, so I turned around. Before I got back to the truck, the dark clouds that had been moving in all evening finally let loose some snow. It was really wet snow and it made the ride considerably less comfortable, but it made the air smell like rain and sagebrush.
Good Water CanyonOn Friday, I set out with the entire family and we drove to the Wedge to do some geocaching. One of the caches required a ladder to reach, and I felt like a dork hauling a ladder around in the desert. It was a fun one to find though, and it was the 800th cache that I’ve found. We found another near the Wedge Overlook, then drove back around to the head of Good Water Canyon and hiked down the canyon as far as we could. I knew there was a big dropoff that would halt our down-canyon movement because I’d run up against the bottom of it in October when I hiked up from farther down. What I didn’t expect is that at the top of the dropoff is a huge pothole full of several feet of water and some cattails. There was a lot of water in smaller potholes all along the canyon, so perhaps that’s how the canyon came to be named. It would be a great summer hike, and I still have several side-canyons in that area that I want to explore.
After Good Water Canyon, we drove a few miles to near Fuller Bottom, then took a jeep trail west that ended near the San Rafael River at Cat Canyon. Nearby there was buried a bottle that’s part of a contest worth $1,000 to the team that completes it (you can read all about it here). We found the bottle quite easily near the coordinates that another team member had given me. I don’t expect to see much of that $1,000 because finding the bottle was only a very small part of what’s required, but it’s worth participating just for the fun of it. Besides, we got to see some new country and a few interesting things along the way there.

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