Well, we knew from the beginning that the trip wouldn’t go exactly as planned. We just hadn’t counted on it happening so soon. While hiking through Arches, Ben’s Achilles in his left heel stated bothering him. Not good. He was later diagnosed with minor Achilles tendinitis. With the rest of the trip on the horizon, we decided that rest and time off was the best course of action. Once out of town, there were no good places to really rejoin the trail. Thus, we split up the gear and decided to meet up again at the end of section 2 at the Needles District of Canyonlands. We had lunch together at the Birthing Rock, an incredible petroglyph panel up Kane Creek. The panel features a woman figure giving birth to a globe-like being. Her hands are outstretched with all her fingers carved in distinct relief. Around her, sets of footprints track across the panel, while bighorn sheep frolic with sinuous snakes and multi-legged centipedes. Men with pointed spears thrust arrows into horned animals frozen in stone.
We parted ways, and I headed up to
The road followed the Colorado River down
I continued down into and back out the canyon up into
I crossed overland into the head of
The trail continued up and out of Indian Creek, climbing slickrock benches to the western ridge of the drainage. I walked across fields of vermillion chert, strewn across the mesa top. A turkey vulture soared by on the afternoon thermals. No meal here, my friend. Best keep on moving. I picked a route down into a small unnamed drainage, and crossed the border of
And I successfully made the rendezvous with Ben. My voice was hoarse and cracked after not talking to anyone for 5 days. The hiking duo are reunited again.
Next up: The Needles and
Section mileage: ~47 miles