When we go canyoneering it usually means the kids hang at camp with an adult or two while the rest of the adults go adventuring. We wanted to shift that focus towards a kid centered trip. We thought it would just be us but quite a few of our friends thought it was a great idea too.
Seneca, Calvin & Jeremiah, Serisa, and Juliana (and all their parents) joined us for spring break in Escalante. Day 1 they scrambled around the Devil’s Playground. Day two was Peekaboo and Spooky, and some hiked up into Brimstone. Day three was a partial decent of Egypt III – with a fun rappel lesson for most. Then the last day everyone was there we all hiked down Upper Calf Creek and waded in the stream for the afternoon. Superfun.
Then it was just our family for a few more days of exploring down the Hole in the Rock road. We’d never been all the way to the end and thought it would be nice to explore, relax, and go slow. Turns out the ‘Hole in the Rock’ isn’t an arch or a bridge as I’d always just assumed… it’s an actual canyon that goes to Lake Powell. Mormon pioneers blasted a path and lowered wagons and livestock and 250 souls down it. It’s almost unfathomable what they accomplished.
Camping and biking in Brian Head! Neither Kari nor I had ever been to Brian Head, so we headed down there with the Lesters and our bikes to explore the acclaimed mountain bike trails and get the kids outside. The biking was actually very good, although it was extremely volcanically dusty and hard on the bikes.
The kids didn’t bike on trail too much, but they pedaled around camp, especially the last night when we were camped at an established campground.
The DeFords also showed up, but I didn’t get any pics of them. They were just coming off a trip on Lake Powell with their fam.
Fall means canyoneering around here, so we headed down to the North Wash area of Southern Utah. It’s located between Hanksville and Lake Powell – essentially BFE. Heather, Josh, and Sirisa, as well as Babbie, Brad, Tai, and Aspen showed up too – But the first morning was just us. We took the kids through a canyon called Lucky Charms – a perfect little slot for kids.
Tory got on rope and let me lower him down a 30ft rappel. He was a little nervous at first, but was determined to do it. And he liked it!
There aren’t more shots simply because lugging the camera through skinny, sandy, hands-on canyons is a pain. We need to get a little point and shoot for these kinds of things.
While we’ve done a lot of car camping this year, there’s always something a little different about packing it in. We did it once last year, and while it didn’t turn out to be the greatest of trips, we thought we’d try it again. The kids are another year older, and another year independent-er. This means, in outdoorsy terms, that Tory can walk on his own a lot farther.
It was a fun, spontaneous trip that the kids loved. I’m really glad they love the outdoors as much as mom and dad do.
Right after Grandma Pat and Grandpa Gary left Tracy and Marcus showed up. Literally. Same day. Again, not a whole lot of pictures were taken, but I did get a few of the day we spend hiking Bald Mountain in the Uintas. It was really fun having so much family around for a few weeks, and I hope they had fun too.
Marcus, Kari, Tory, and Tegan look out over the Uintas.
We make it up to the Uintas quite a bit every summer, this year a little later than usual due to our extended winter/lack of spring. We spent just one night and then hiked the next day. These hikes are still short, but I’m guessing in the next few years they’ll stretch out longer with some overnight hike ins.
I know I’ve posted this image already here: Yuba Reservoir Boat Trip, but I want to remember Tory’s first nights under the stars as an event on its own. This is only important because I’m eager to return to our backcountry ways, and this is a step closer.
We headed south to Yuba State Park for a weekend of camping, beaching, and boating. Four families and one dog spent three days in the heat, eating drinking, surfing, swimming, laughing, and playing. It was a great time, and thanks go out to Pete and Kelly for inviting us all along. Click the image above for more.