Friday, September 16, 2011

Ash Canyon Overlook Loop - 9/16/11

Twenty- five club members experienced the return to Red Rock Canyon NCA today by taking a hike around the Calico Hills to the Ash Canyon Overlook. It was great to be back at our fall / spring stomping ground. The weather was a little hot still but there was a very pleasant cool breeze that kept us comfortable.

We parked at the Sandstone Quarry parking lot and headed up the Calico Tanks Trail. Turning to the left at the Red Cap wash, we continued around the wash and scrambled up and over to the old Gateway Canyon trail. We reached the overlook and sat for a break while taking in the view in the first photo.

Wanting to make the hike a loop, we decided to take the old Gateway Canyon trail all the way back to the Turtlehead Trail. This part of the hike lead all of us up and down and up and down through various washes until we arrived at an enclosed sandstone "arena." Here, we explored one pretty slot canyon which ended with a twenty foot dry waterfall that could not be negotiated.

We returned back to the trail and junctioned with the Turtlehead Trail taking this trail back to the Calico Tanks Trail and on to the parking lot. At only 3 miles, this hike is very pleasant with many beautiful views of the calico sandstone all around. Ahhh! It's nice to be back at Red Rock!

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