Mar 7 2013

Zabriskie Point to Badwater

Death Valley Trip 2013 | Day 3
Monday, February 11, 2013

The Original Trip Report on ADVENTR.CO

My alarm woke me up a few hours before sunrise on Monday morning. I quickly got my camp loaded back in the Jeep and started the short drive over to the popular Zabriskie Point. As usual, I was the first to arrive with plenty of time to scout the location in the dark. I guess I should mention that it was my birthday. I had purposely planned this trip to coincide with my birthday, and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend the day.

Looking over the badlands from Zabriskie Point shortly before the sun would rise for the day.


Zabriskie Badlands by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

The prominent Manly Beacon, the Panamint Range and the Earth’s shadow come together for this scene.


Manly Dawn by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

First light on the Panamint Range on the other side of Death Valley.


Zabriskie Point Morning by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr
Continue reading


Mar 6 2013

Falling Man to Dante’s View

Death Valley Trip 2013 | Day 2
Sunday, February 10, 2013

The Original Trip Report on ADVENTR.CO

After a good night of sleep my alarm woke me up before the sun was expected to rise. When I got out of my tent I noticed that some thin clouds had moved in overnight and the sky was completely overcast. I had originally planned to spend some time photographing Little Finland this morning, but with the overcast skies I decided to cancel those plans. Instead, I had a little breakfast, packed up my camp and started driving towards my next destination- the Falling Man petroglyph site.

On my way to the Falling Man site I drove right by Devil’s Throat, so I stopped for a quick look. It’s a giant sinkhole in the desert floor. This is not a good photo, but I’m posting it up anyway since I bothered to stop here.


Devil’s Throat by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

When I made my plans to spend the first weekend of my trip in the Gold Butte region I really thought that the Kohta Circus petroglyphs were going to be the highlight of my visit. I was wrong. I had a lot more fun exploring the area around the Falling Man petroglyph. Not only were there petroglyphs to be found everywhere I looked, there was also colorful sandstone all over the place. It was like walking through a colorful maze searching for rock art around every corner! I spent more time in this area than I had anticipated and look forward to returning again in the future.

A photo of colorful sandstone in a small alcove reminiscent of scenes found at the Valley of Fire.


Color by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

To access the rock art I had to first crawl through this passage in the rock. The petroglyphs lead the way.


Petroglyph Passage by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr
Continue reading


Mar 5 2013

Kohta Circus & Little Finland

Death Valley Trip 2013 | Day 1
Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Original Trip Report on ADVENTR.CO

It’s been an unusually long and cold winter this year in Grand Junction. That’s why I’m glad I started planning my first trip to Death Valley a few months earlier. It would be nice to get out hiking and camping in temperatures that were a bit warmer than back at home. Though my main destination on this week-long trip would be Death Valley, I planned on spending the first weekend exploring a few locations in Nevada. On Saturday morning I left home bright and early and started my drive west.

As I approached Salina the sun started to come up and painted the clouds above a pink hue. I pulled over for a quick photo over the interstate.


Salina Sunrise by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A layer of fresh snow that fell overnight coated the landscape and caught my attention.


Fresh Snow by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

When I reached St. George I needed to get out of the Jeep and stretch my legs a bit. I drove over to Anasazi Ridge along the Santa Clara River and hiked to a few petroglyphs.

Two large rectangular-bodied bighorn sheep.


Two Big Sheep by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr
Continue reading


Jan 1 2013

Marty’s Moab Rock Art Tour

Moab Area Rock Art XXII
Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Original Trip Report on ADVENTR.CO

On Saturday I drove down to Moab to meet up with Marty again for some hiking and exploring. He’s going to be moving to Grand Junction at the beginning of the new year, so we wanted to get at least one more hike in before he got busy with the move. Over the last year Marty had come across some new rock art sites while out exploring the area, so today he was going to show me some of them.

I managed to time my drive to Moab so that I was near the Fisher Towers at sunrise.


Fisher Silhouette by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Highway 128 through the Richardson Amphitheater at sunrise.


128 by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

I stopped along the Colorado River as the early morning light was striking the cliffs on the other side.


Colorado Morning by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

I’ve driven the River Road to Moab many times over the years and have never seen a bighorn sheep along this stretch before. That would change this morning since this guy was standing on the shoulder of the road as I approached. I pulled over and changed my lens to get this shot before he climbed back up into the cliffs to join the rest of the group.


Climbing Ram by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr
Continue reading


Dec 26 2012

After Thanksgiving Swell Trip

San Rafael Swell Rock Art X
Black Friday & Saturday, November 23-24, 2012

The Original Trip Report on ADVENTR.CO

After spending most of Thanksgiving Day at home it was time to get back out exploring again. Normally I take at least a few trips throughout the year to the San Rafael Swell, but I guess I was too preoccupied with the Paria Plateau this year since I still hadn’t made it out there. I decided it was time to at least make one trip out to the Swell this year, so that’s where I headed. I left well before sunrise on on Black Friday and was still surprised to see so many cars park at the mall that early as I drove out of town. I still can’t imagine getting up that early to try and get a deal among a large crowd of people, I’d rather spend my morning catching a sunrise in the desert. I spent the daylight hours of Friday and Saturday exploring, hiking and photographing rock art sites. I revisited a few sites and searched for some new ones. I spent the night at a hotel in Green River so I didn’t have to drive all the way back home on Friday night. Though many of the sites I visited were in the San Rafael Swell, I also made a side trip or two into the Book Cliffs and other areas outside the Swell. Here’s a few photos from my two days of exploring…

One of the new sites I visited this trip was the petroglyph panel near Mussentuchit Flats. When I first arrived, most of the panel was in direct sunlight, except for this narrow section, which happened to be one of the more interesting parts. As soon as the sunlight struck this section, it was almost impossible to see these figures.


Mussentuchit by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

The fading Butch ‘Casady’ inscription under a shallow overhang.


Butch Casady by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Cracked mud in the early morning light.


Cracks by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

I’ve searched for this Barrier Canyon Style figure before without success, so I was happy to come across it this time.


Top Half by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Faded red pictographs and handprints.


Three Hands by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Faded petroglyphs and red pictographs.


Faded by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A nice Barrier Canyon Style pictograph panel that I missed on a previous visit. Glad I was able to find it this time.


Inventory Panel by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Pictographs above water, an uncommon sight.


Reflection by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A beautiful Fremont panel in the warm afternoon light.


Rainbow Panel by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr
Continue reading