Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pics of random adventures in a local canyon

This was about three years or so ago. I was doing an eighty-foot rappel. This section was fun because you would drop down with nothing to touch for thirty feet. You can see that I just kicked off and am about to fly down. It's all kid's stuff, though.
This is an example of the stuff that I find off of the beaten path and why I really like finding mines. Pictured above is part of a steam compressor that has been abandoned for over a century. Oh, and the mines...They are a bit scary, I admit. But I am not too afraid to pop in and see what might be lurking in them. I occasionally find big ones; however, most are small prospects that either never produced or the ores were so poor as to not be profitable. Some mines later served as a hideout for moonshiners. Even more interesting are the mines that were used as scams. These played out or phony holes were "salted" with gold from a shotgun blast (the shot replaced with some amount of real gold or silver) or other method, so that crooks could lure in investors and then run off with their money. With gold at today's prices, you'd really have to con some serious money out of someone in order to make it worthwhile. It's these kind of stories that intrigue me the most, not the hole itself. I also like hiking to "death" cars. Having a couple of connections to search and rescue, I get the low down on these grizzly places. This one was particularly gruesome. Three guys came down a dirt canyon road at night and missed a corner. This is what a six hundred foot tumble looks like. Two guys died, with one of those guy's head getting completely crushed. The third guy was thrown out of the Jeep a third of the way down. Although he was seriously injured, he crawled up the incline to the road, nearly died, but then was found and saved. It may seem a bit weird, but I know of guys who have scavenged these wrecks to fix their own vehicles. Don't worry, I would never do something like that.
Then you have more appealing to the masses stuff: waterfalls. I would have to say that checking out waterfalls is my first love when it comes to hiking. Just to give you some scale on this picture, that rock on the right is about twelve feet tall. A sad story about this waterfall: A girl fell to her death here about ten years ago. She was with her boyfriend. They were walking around the rocks at the top and she slipped and fell head first down to the bottom. Her boyfriend scrambled down the hole (the bottom is a very treacherous spot to get to) only to find that he could not do anything to help her. So, he ran down the canyon as fast as he could to get help. In fact, he ran so hard that he broke some bones in his feet from the impact. It was not enough, though, and it was later determined that she had died instantly.
Well, I can't have a bummer ending for y'all, so I thought I'd include my other favorite thing to find on my expeditions: finding rock art. Now, this panel was not in the same canyon as the previous pictures, but is still in my hometown. These simple figures were probably drawn by some Shoshone or possibly Blackfeet--they were both in the area before the settlers came and pushed them out. I've found better examples of rock art outside of my backyard, but I still enjoy hiking up and looking at these little bunny-eared stick figures.


Nessa Roo said...

That is a beautiful waterfall. I'd love to find something like that. I was going to say something about dying, but it came out kind of morbid, so I backspaced quite a bit.

The bunnies are cute. Do you think that was the baby's cave? snicker

The Grunt said...

Nessa Roo~ I've dealt with death enough that I don't mind comments about it. Baby's! The figures do remind me of that, now that you've pointed that out.

Outdoorsy Girl said...

History and two favorite things! Loved reading this post and seeing the pics. I so wanna try rappelling one day. Has to be such a rush to move vertically down a rocky canyon wall! I also think the death car shot is amazing. I am sad that those guys lost their lives but just seeing that mangled heap of metal brings a whole new perspective of the depth of that canyon. Combine that with the laws of gravity and whoa! You get a whole new respect for the power of nature. And as you know, waterfalls are my favorite hiking destinations, too. This one is beautiful! It reminds me of one I hiked to out there. Where is this one located?

The Grunt said...

O-Girl~ Well, as you know, I am an expert at being repelling....heh, I am pretty good at rappelling, but I am no expert. All but the last picture are places up a certain canyon in my home town that your pals took you up. If that isn't enough to go on, it was the one where you saw a rattler. If that's still not enough, it's the canyon of my hometown's name. It is also the place where most accidents (besides the interstate)and teenage pregnancies (same thing as accidents, I guess) occur in my county.

Jules said...

Nice tour! Except for the gruesome car wreck photo which made my spine crawl.

I love arriving at waterfalls too, it's my favorite part of a hike also.

Outdoorsy Girl said...

Aww man! Now the name of this "local" canyon is on the tip of my tongue!!! Just playin'! Of course I know the name of this canyon and not because you told me about this about 3 years or so ago. And not because my pals took me up there before. And not because that's where I saw the rattler (even though that is actually pretty hard for someone like me to forget). And not because I know the name of your hometown. And not because I'd heard that's where the most accidents (including both vehicular and condom failure) occur. Naw, I knew where it was because I'm Utah smart!

Or maybe it really was because I remember you telling me about it a long time ago.

But your waterfall isn't the one I was thinking it was. So you still taught me something anyhow. ;)

The Grunt said...

Jules~ The car wreck is pretty horrible, but at the same time it's fascinating. We definitely agree on the waterfall thing, so that's cool.

O~Girl~ Since you don't blog anymore, I'm just gonna call you Julie, because it seems more natural for me, seeing how well I know you. So, were you thinking of the "murder" waterfall that you and your friend bumped into the killer? This one isn't as big as that one, nor as notorious.

Outdoorsy Girl said...

I suppose it is acceptable to call me Julie since I think it would be very weird to me to call you Grunt in person! And not to mention that we might get some strange looks if anyone overheard us and thought I was belittling and talking down to you. :)

Actually your waterfall reminds me of one in Adams Canyon. I went on a hike with a Matt to that one and he drank all of my water and let me dehydrate...unlike another Matt, who was much nicer to me and let me drink HIS water! :)