It has been almost one year to the day since I last set foot out here. I’m not quite sure though if that feels like a long time ago or just the other day. Peekaboo was the slot canyon I did back then, but the snow on the ground prevented me from finding the other slot canyon out here. Today will be different, as I start the hike out to Spooky Gulch.
The entrance is foreboding and mysterious. The walls quickly close in around me, forcing my backpack to be held at arm’s length ahead of me so that I could squeeze through the passages. A large boulder has been washed down into the canyon from a storm hundreds of miles away, and it hangs precariously only inches from the canyon floor.
I get down on my belly and wriggle under the large stone, sweating like a whore in church. I’m afraid of touching the boulder as I pass, fearing that any movement will cause the rock to fall and crush me. I make it though, and carry onward. The silence is haunting as morning light starts to change the colors of the sandstone.
I find a rope latched to a rocky alcove about four feet above me. The rope is long enough for me to grab, and I quickly figure out that I must climb upward if I want to exit this slot canyon. Or turn around. Eventually I climb my way out.
I follow the trail about 1/2 a mile and descent into the final part of this slot. The trickiest and most technical part by far.
There were sections that could have used ropes or cables, but that would take away from the natural beauty I suppose.
More dangerous, but as I find with most things, if you stay calm, take it slow, and use good judgement, one can get it done.