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Thread: Grand Gulch - Kane to Collins

  1. #1

    Grand Gulch - Kane to Collins

    It's about time I put something up here - almost 3 weeks since I got home, and not a word!

    Grand Gulch solo backpack - 5 days from Kane Gulch to Collins Canyon.

    Rather than my usual wordy, long report, I'll just put some short notes and a bunch of photos...

    I flew into Vegas on March 30, and drove down to Bullhead City for dinner with denaliguide. He gave me some great maps & info. Thanks, denaliguide! Spent the night in Flagstaff.

    Drove to the Kane Gulch Ranger Station, where I met Brewhaha. We drove to the Collins Canyon trailhead, where I parked my car, and he drove me back to Kane. (There was a snow shower on the way - made me nervous!) He wished me luck, and I was on my way at about 12:30. Thanks, Brewhaha!

    Campsites were at: Day 1, mouth of Todie Canyon. Day 2, mouth of Bullet Canyon. Day 3, just west of Cow Tank Canyon. Day 4, just west of Bannister Ruin.

    Emerged on Friday afternoon, and drove to Mt. Carmel, where I stayed courtesy of the Emperor. Thanks, ratagonia!

    Spent Saturday morning on the east side of Zion, then the afternoon in Springdale. Dinner with ratagonia, then a drive back to Vegas. A night in an interesting & unusual hotel (and hours wandering the strip.)

    Sunday, relaxing day, with a flight home at dinner time (that was delayed for an hour or two, 'til after dark. Love the lights of the Strip...)

    Some photos:


    Collins Canyon parking lot



    Setting out from Kane



    Approaching Junction Ruins



    Stimper Arch



    First night's shelter
















































    Final night's camp











    The Narrows of Grand Gulch


    Halfway up Collins


    Dugway out of Collins


    Ah, the sights of Springdale


    Artisan Hotel, Vegas


    Boarding my flight home


    If you're interested, more photos are available here

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  4. #2
    Ahh Kev. You make me feel guilty. It was my anniversary this weekend and my wife and I were going to go camping but our son did not sleep on Friday night, so we just hung out most of yesterday and are doing nothing today. You live in Canada and do such an awesome job of taking advantage of an area to which I live much closer. You are an inspiration!



    I love the picture of you in your tent with your headlight on. All of your hieroglyphics were also awesome. In the end, I loved your pictures. Thanks for posting, though be it late.


    P.S. Hieroglyphics is hard for me to spell and I had to use the spellchecker.
    "My heart shall cry out for Moab..." Isaiah 15:5

  5. #3
    i was wondering how much longer i would have to wait to see this. looks like you had a great time. grand gulch and cedar meas is a magical area to explore. once you have been here you will be back for more. maybe next time we can hook up again. great photos. looking forward to seeing you again.
    But if I agreed with you, we would both be wrong.

  6. #4
    Great shots. I'm glad your trip was good and it was really nice to meet you. Let me know when you're in the area again.
    The gostak distims the doshes.

  7. #5
    Glad you had a great trip. Nice pics. I've done the Kane/Bullet over a weekend, very nice scenery.

  8. #6
    what a writeup and trip. those hieroglyphs are sweet.

  9. #7
    for the uninitiated:
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    But if I agreed with you, we would both be wrong.

  10. #8
    Looked like a great trip, thanks for the photos. Someday I'm hoping to make the 2 hour drive and do Grand Gulch.
    So much Utah, so little time.

  11. #9
    Thanks for the great photos.

    Damn I miss Utarrrrrr.
    "The eagle never lost so much time as when he consented to learn of the crow."

    -- Wm Blake

  12. #10
    Bogley BigShot
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    Great photos and Rock Art!

  13. #11
    Zions the "s" is silent trackrunner's Avatar
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    How'd the shelter hold up

  14. #12
    The shelter was great! Silicone-impregnated nylon - like a Siltarp, but from MEC (kind of like Canada's REI) - and a tent footprint. Tried only the A-frame configuration, to help keep the cold out. Had some strong winds on a couple of nights, but it held up great. Pegged down on the corners and middle of the sides. I took along 6 regular pegs and 2 snow/sand stakes. One night the sand I was on was really soft, but some rocks on a couple of the pegs, and they held fine.

    I've never been a trekking pole user (just bought them a couple months ago - hooray for SAC), but with the mileage that the knees are racking up, and the utility as tarp poles, I'm starting to really appreciate them.

    Yes, those are technically not heiroglyphs. Petroglyphs (pecked) and pictographs (painted). Heiroglyphs can be painted or pecked, and are analagous to an alphabet or words (used as a written language).

    DiscGo, I think that you're getting the outdoor bug more & more - I'm sure that as your parental duties permit, you'll be getting out there a lot! I never really started doing much backpacking/climbing/exploring until after my kids were born (they're 11 and 9 now), and it's taken a long slow process to be able to get out as much as I do - which is still less than I'd like. And, oh: Happy Anniversary!

    Tanya - sorry I never got a chance to stop in & see you. Busy weekend, and I didn't really have a schedule that I expected to be able to keep to (all times were going to be subject to change - and they did!) I'm hoping to be down that way with the whole family in October, and we'll probably come for at least a night at the T-bird!

    Shane - thanks again for offering to help out like that! It was great meeting & chatting with you (despite the brevity of the visit!)

  15. #13
    SWEEEET! Thanks for the epic report.


  16. #14
    Nice shot of the Quail Panel ~ I've been wanting to get down that way for a while.
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    "You're not lost...if you don't care where you are"
    Grand Gulch /Cedar Mesa Rock Art Hats

    To learn more about the ruins of SE Utah:
    Visit Beyond Mesa Verde
    Visit Anasazi Ruins

  17. #15
    By bringing this to the top, hopefully you see it. I have some questions about the hike.

    On average, how many miles did you cover a day? (about 7, mas o menos)
    Assuming, a hiker in decent physical shape, is 5 days to cover the 36 miles from Kane, moving really fast?

    Just a couple of weeks ago, my brother and I did a day hike down Bullet to Jailhouse Ruin and it really kicked my butt (kind of out of shape). I have also done an overnighter down Kane to Fortress Canyon, in February, and that was difficult because of the foot deep snow for most of the hike.

    Grand Gulch always amazes me how rugged it is. But I have definitely caught the bug and I want to get back for more.
    Conquistare al mundo!!!

  18. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by madsjim
    By bringing this to the top, hopefully you see it. I have some questions about the hike.

    On average, how many miles did you cover a day? (about 7, mas o menos)
    Assuming, a hiker in decent physical shape, is 5 days to cover the 36 miles from Kane, moving really fast?

    Just a couple of weeks ago, my brother and I did a day hike down Bullet to Jailhouse Ruin and it really kicked my butt (kind of out of shape). I have also done an overnighter down Kane to Fortress Canyon, in February, and that was difficult because of the foot deep snow for most of the hike.

    Grand Gulch always amazes me how rugged it is. But I have definitely caught the bug and I want to get back for more.
    I just brought up the GPS track that I brought back, and the total distance was about 43 miles covered. Day 1: 8 miles, Day 2: 10.5 miles, Day 3: 8.5 miles, Day 4: 9 miles, Day 5: 7 miles.

    That's kind of approximate, as the reception bounced around in the canyon a bit.

    So, the average per day was about 8.5 miles for this trip. But really, you can't go wrong doing any sort of a trip through here. It might be better to plan on covering a little less distance per day, and spending more time viewing the ruins and the art. Especially with someone else - I find I can cover more ground solo. Rather than stopping when I want to and when the other wants to, there are less stops when alone.

    Fitness is, of course, an issue for a trip like this, but any reasonably fit person can do this. The nice thing is, it's not a lot of up and down. More like down, along, along, along, and up! Not so bad.

    Go, do a trip through, enjoy, and post it here!

    Oh, attached is a KMZ file of my GPS track, open in Google Earth.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  19. #17
    Thanks for the information. I especially enjoy your GPS track.

    I have been looking at the information for Collins Canyon and might head down there by spring when the roads are at least passable. I would love to see Bannister Ruin.

    I can see how, once you are in the gulch, travel is much more straight forward.

    Again, thanks for the info.
    Conquistare al mundo!!!

  20. #18
    Thanks for sharing great write up and pics especially liked the chukar great colors.
    Don't talk unless you can improve the silence.
    The trout do not rise in the cemetery, so you better do your fishing while you are still alive. SGH

  21. #19
    Glad you guys bumped this as I missed it the first go 'round.

    Love the Chukar photo! Dang he let you get very close.

    I'm trying to decide on our spring break backpack this year and GG is definitely still in the the mix of possibilities.
    It is good that warriors such as we meet in the struggle of life... or death. It shall be life. - Ten Bears, "The Outlaw Josie Wales"

  22. #20
    Cool place, for sure. Here's another shot of the chukar:



    There were two of them along here, they stayed close to me for a little ways along the canyon before finally flying to a ledge up along the side.

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