Friday, November 9, 2012

Moab Trip Day 1--Little Wild Horse Canyon

On our way out of Goblin Valley State Park, we stopped at the visitor center, which doubles as the entrance station. They had some nice exhibits. I also asked the ranger about Little Wild Horse canyon. The information I had found on the Internet said it was the most-visited canyon on the San Rafael Swell, and a beautiful hike, but I wanted confirmation on how to get there. The ranger pulled out a slick brochure with good instructions, and off we went.

We turned at a signed post and drove about five miles on a good paved road. I think they recently paved the road, because a couple of other instructions mentioned it being gravel. The pavement ended at the signed parking lot. We got our things ready and headed up the trail. In about ten minutes we reached a canyon junction, with a sign.

Bell Canyon and Little Wild Horse Canyon are two canyons next to each other, and they can be hiked as an eight-mile long loop. We knew that was a little too much for us, so we headed up to Little Wild Horse Canyon to reach the narrows, which begin about half a mile up the canyon. Here's the start of the canyon:

Desert Girl wasn't walking at the beginning because she was in a Terrible Twos moment. But as we went farther up the canyon, she begged to be let down.

It kept getting better and better.
Soon it started getting narrow. We let Desert Girl down.
She liked touching the walls.

I asked Desert Boy to smile for the camera. This is what he gave me.

We continued enjoying ourselves as we wound our way though the slot canyon. It was beautiful and tranquil, yet we couldn't help but hurry a little to discover what was around the next corner.

Eventually we got to the end of the narrows, and the canyon opened up. We decided that would be a good turnaround, as it was getting late in the afternoon and we still had to drive to Moab that night.
Before we began our hike back down, I convinced everyone to pose for a photo.
We're all looking in the right direction--hurray!!

Then the race was on. The kids love to run downhill, especially in sand. We had to jog a little to keep up.

Taking photos in a dimly-lit slot canyon is already enough of a challenge--but throw in running kids, and it makes it, well, a little blurry!

By the way, my husband picked out Desert Girl's outfit and color combo. She was comfortable! And she kept on running.

She was asking if she could do the Kids Fun Run the next day with Desert Boy, and after I saw how far she ran, I thought my answer would be yes.

This really is a gorgeous hike (or jog). We saw a couple other people on the trail before we went into Little Wild Horse Canyon, but no one else. During the summer they say the parking lot fills up and people have to park down the road. You'd have to pack a lot of water in the hot months, but we were fine with just a couple water bottles.

Desert Boy was fascinated with the dry mud, and started looking all over for it and picking it up whenever he found it.

I asked the kids to pose for a photo, but my favorite shot was of them doing a high five.

The canyon obviously gets some flash floods. We found debris well over Desert Boy's head and talked to him about what to do if you're in a flash flood. Even more importantly, we talked about in what kind of weather you don't go into narrow canyons.

Desert Girl got Daddy to give her a ride out the last bit.

We would definitely like to go back, maybe to do the whole loop.

1 comment:

The Incredible Woody said...

Wow! What a stunning place!

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