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 Cascade Bill (William Mooseker) | Home > Backpacking Trips > 2012-2019 Trips > Grand Gulch 2018  
Grand Gulch 2018
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Grand Gulch 2018
May 2018

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Trip to Utah
Day 1: Bullet Canyon

Day 2: Pouroff Camp to Sheiks Canyon
Day 3: Sheiks Canyon Rest Day
Day 4: Exit via Sheiks Canyon
Navigating Boulder Field in Grand Gulch

This was our 17th trip to the canyons of Utah. We had big plans but with the dual factors of heat and a severe drought in Grand Gulch made it necessary for us to change our plans. We originally planned to hike down Bullet Canyon and then continue down Grand Gulch to Green House Canyon. Then we planned to backtrack back up Grand Gulch past Bullet and then exit out Sheiks Canyon. After exiting Sheiks, we were going to go down Road Canyon for one night before returning home.

Unfortunately, it was much hotter and drier than it was even in 2017 when we thought it was pretty hot and dry. Basically, we ended up with a much shorter trip by eliminating our hike and camp at Green House Canyon and instead spending a rest day at our camp in Sheiks Canyon. We also shortened the hike a day by eliminating the Road Canyon part of the trip.

Even with the abbreviated plans, the trip had many interesting things to see and discover. The hike down Bullet and exit through Sheiks are two of the most challenging of the usual entrances to the Gulch. In going down Bullet, we retraced the start of our initial Utah hike in 2000. The exit via Sheiks was the first time, although we had been up Sheiks to the Green Mask Panel several times before, the latest in 2016.

Maybe it's just because I'm older, but the hike down Bullet seemed much harder and took longer. Certainly the heat had an effect as well. I was really worried about coming out Sheiks because of how it was described in the guide books, but although strenous (for me at least) it was doable and enjoyable.

One of the unfortunate things to come about on the trip was that the SD card that Mike had used in his GoPro for most of the trip was lost after he put in a new card on our second day. Lost were all the videos he took coming down Bullet, including Perfect Kiva and Jailhouse Ruin.

Kickass Trekkers on this trip were: Bill Mooseker, Shelby Stong, Fred Stong, Will Stong, Mike Stong, and Allan Hoseth

Troop 24 Kickass Trekkers: "The High Adventure Troop" Alumni Backpacking Trip
-Cascade Bill Mooseker



Date(s): May 19-25, 2018. 1 - 4 of 4 Total. Shared
1. Grand Gulch 2018 - Trip to UT & Day   (May 19-21, 2018)
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Grand Gulch 2018

Trip to Utah May 19-20
Day 1: Bullet Canyon May 21
    Bullet Canyon Chutes
    Perfect Kiva
    Jailhouse Ruin
    Pouroff Camp

Fred, Bill, Shelby, Mike & Allan - Down Bullet Canyon Chute #1

Shelby picked me up at home and we drove to Mike's home in Kennewick where we met Mike, Will and Allan. After packing all our gear in Shelby's truck, the five of us climbed in and after a quick stop at the Kennewick REI, off we went. We arrived at the Marble Motel in Tremonton, Utah at dusk - truly a long day on the road.

The next day we headed south making a stop in Price for last minute supplies and then lunch in Hanksville. Along the way we took in the view at the Hite Overlook and arrived at our camp at the head of Todie Canyon. We met Fred at the Todie Trailhead as he had driven up from New Mexico.

We arrived at the Kane RS a little after eight and after watching the mandatory video we picked up our permit and an additional gallon of water after noting the dire warnings about the water scarcity in the canyon. After dropping the packs at the Bullet Canyon Trailhead, we did the relatively short car shuttle and dropped Shelby's truck at the Sheiks Canyon trailhead. This was a little exciting as the last mile was more rocks than road with a herd of cows who were very reluctant to move from their preferred resting spot in the middle of the road. We returned to Bullet where we donned packs and headed out.

Retracing the route of our first Grand Gulch trip in 2001, we descended Bullet and visited the Perfect Kiva alcove and the Jailhouse Ruin. It was a long and hot day and we straggled into camp just before dark.

Note photo taker's names are given in the titles under the thumbnails

Kickass Trekkers on this trip were: Bill Mooseker, Shelby Stong, Fred Stong, Will Stong, Mike Stong, and Allan Hoseth

The descriptions under the photo thumbnails in the album sometimes contain links to maps or additional information. These are identified by "Blue” text for links. I've also inserted links to Google Maps to show where certain photos in the album were taken or to locate features shown in the photos. Click on the link, close the sidebar, and choose satellite view. Basically, you can then zoom in and out using the mouse wheel or drag the map by clicking and holding.

For panoramic photos, I would recommend clicking on the thumbnail photo to enlarge. View at original size for most detail. The thumbnails do not do justice to petroglyphs and pictographs, so I would recommend enlarging them as well. Please take the time to view the many videos to better experience what it was like to be there.

Troop 24 Kickass Trekkers Backpacking Trip
-Cascade Bill Mooseker


382 Visits, 103 Images, Shared Album
2. Grand Gulch 2018 day 2  (May 22, 2018)
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Grand Gulch 2018
Day 2 - May 22

Wall Ruin
El Cid Ruin
Surprise Petroglyph Panel
Cactus Butt!

Will Approaching El Cid Ruin

Our original plan for the second day was to hike down Grand Gulch and camp in Green House Canyon. Just below the Bullet-Grand Gulch junction, we met a group of high school students who told us that the water situation was sketchy. We decided to backtrack and go up the Gulch and to camp at our 2016 camp in Sheiks Canyon

Along the way we visited Wall Ruin, and several other sites that we had not been to on our previous trips. Will had an unfortunate encounter with a cactus while descending a slope that required some precise extraction of needles using a tweezer. After a cloudy morning, the afternoon got very hot and we were glad when the sun dipped below the canyon walls.

Kickass Trekkers on this trip were: Bill Mooseker, Shelby Stong, Fred Stong, Will Stong, Mike Stong, and Allan Hoseth

The descriptions under the photo thumbnails in the album sometimes contain links to maps or additional information. These are identified by "Blue” text for links. I've also inserted links to Google Maps to show where certain photos in the album were taken or to locate features shown in the photos. Click on the link, close the sidebar, and choose satellite view. Basically, you can then zoom in and out using the mouse wheel or drag the map by clicking and holding.

For panoramic photos, I would recommend clicking on the thumbnail photo to enlarge. View at original size for most detail. The thumbnails do not do justice to petroglyphs and pictographs, so I would recommend enlarging them as well. Please take the time to view the many videos to better experience what it was like to be there.

Troop 24 "The High Adventure Troop" Backpacking Trip
-Cascade Bill Mooseker


64 Visits, 199 Images, Shared Album
3. Grand Gulch 2018 day 3  (May 23, 2018)
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Grand Gulch 2018
Day 3 - May 23

Rest Day in Camp
Woven Chess Board
Green Mask Panel
Gumbo Time

Breakfast at Sheiks Canyon Camp

Our decision to spend a rest day was a good one, as the afternoon temperature soared above 90 degrees. I spent a lot of time in the shade reading a book. Mike organized a project of creating a chess board from reeds and sticks and ending up playing a game using Necco wafers, hard candies, pepperoni, and rocks as game pieces!

The Green Mask Panel, as always, was spectacular with many different styles of pictographs to see. Getting water was more difficult than our last time as the downstream pools from the Green Mask spring had dried up. This required about a 500' hike to the spring to fill our jugs. With each jug weing about 40 pounds, a water run was a real chore.

Note photo takers are given in the titles under the thumbnails:

Kickass Trekkers on this trip were: Bill Mooseker, Shelby Stong, Fred Stong, Will Stong, Mike Stong, and Allan Hoseth

The descriptions under the photo thumbnails in the album sometimes contain links to maps or additional information. These are identified by "Blue” text for links. I've also inserted links to Google Maps to show where certain photos in the album were taken or to locate features shown in the photos. Click on the link, close the sidebar, and choose satellite view. Basically, you can then zoom in and out using the mouse wheel or drag the map by clicking and holding.

For panoramic photos, I would recommend clicking on the thumbnail photo to enlarge. View at original size for most detail. The thumbnails do not do justice to petroglyphs and pictographs, so I would recommend enlarging them as well. Please take the time to view the many videos to better experience what it was like to be there.

Troop 24 Kickass Trekkers Backpacking Trip
-Cascade Bill Mooseker


59 Visits, 57 Images, Shared Album
4. Grand Gulch 2018 day 4  (May 24, 2018)
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Grand Gulch 2018
May 24, 2018

Climb out of Sheiks Canyon
Yellow House Ruin

Bill & Shelby Skirting Sheiks Canyon Pouroff

It was with great trepidation that I planned the trip coming out Sheiks Canyon as all of the guide books stated that it was steep and difficult. As it was one of the few remaining side canyons in the Grand Gulch system that we had not done, I felt that I would be able to make it even if they had to rope me up and haul me out!

We got a very early start as we wanted to make the most of the early morning cool and hike in the shade as long as possible. The first obstacle was a very steep climb up a bouldery slope, which we did without much trouble. At the top we dropped our packs and climbed up to a nearby saddle to get a view of Grand Gulch. The rest of the climb out of Sheiks was a little easier and quite enjoyable.

Along the way we stopped to scope out a small but very well preserved granary. Near the end of the canyon, we visited the Yellow House ruin (actually several structures), which was a great way to end our trip. It was only a short distance from Yellow House, to the rim of the canyon and then just a few minutes from the trailhead. After changing clothes and a quick sponge bath, we were on our way back home.

Note photo takers are given in the titles under the thumbnails:

Kickass Trekkers on this trip were: Bill Mooseker, Shelby Stong, Fred Stong, Will Stong, Mike Stong, and Allan Hoseth

The descriptions under the photo thumbnails in the album sometimes contain links to maps or additional information. These are identified by "Blue” text for links. I've also inserted links to Google Maps to show where certain photos in the album were taken or to locate features shown in the photos. Click on the link, close the sidebar, and choose satellite view. Basically, you can then zoom in and out using the mouse wheel or drag the map by clicking and holding.

For panoramic photos, I would recommend clicking on the thumbnail photo to enlarge. View at original size for most detail. The thumbnails do not do justice to petroglyphs and pictographs, so I would recommend enlarging them as well. Please take the time to view the many videos to better experience what it was like to be there.

Troop 24 Kickass Trekkers Backpacking Trip
-Cascade Bill Mooseker


61 Visits, 123 Images, Shared Album
 
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