Sunday, January 28, 2024

Cholla Forest - 1/27/24

Cholla Forest

The First Dryfall

Watching us from Above

Tackling the first Dryfall
Geez Louise!! What about the washouts in Seven Falls Canyon??? The climbs are more slippery and the falls are deeper! And, one climb has pretty much disappeared. Funny thing, though. The "trickiest" climb (perhaps dryfall #3) is the same. Phew! There were a couple of hiker falls, too, but we all made it out alive. Over the last 15 years that I have been hiking this wonderful hike out to Cholla Forest in Teddy Bear Canyon, I have not noticed such a change from rainfall. We had sixteen hikers today that began from the Water Tank Trailhead on Cottonwood Road, a dirt road heading into the hills across Lakeshore Road from the Boulder Beach Campground.

Tricky Dryfall #3

Seven Falls Canyon


Mt. Wilson from Cholla Forest

Teddy Bear Chollas
I took the first fall inside the rabbithole. It was a doozy. For the next mile, my camera was not working. Somehow it recovered near the top of Seven Falls Canyon. We made it up the canyon with difficulty and took the trail from the saddle down into Teddy Bear Canyon. We went straight to the teddy bear cholla grove and took our break choosing not to take in the small loop further up. After the break, we started down toward the connecting wash to Bacon Canyon. This canyon was a little less affected by the washout. Some of the dryfall bottoms were deeper but not all. However, in this canyon, it was easier to circumvent the drops. A large part of this group were newbies and I was surprised that so many of them chose to do the drop-to-the-side dryfall as seen five photos down.

Sixteen strong Hikers

The Game Trail

Descent of Bacon Canyon

Hiking around a Drop
The build-up for the colors of Bacon Canyon must have been a bit much because everyone was excitedly anticipating the display! When we reached the colorful vein of rock, we stayed to the left in the wash and dropped down without a problem. We usually see a lot of bighorns on this hike. However, the only two or three we saw were far up on the ridge peeking over and watching us as we started out. Kind of a stressful morning on what is usually an excellent hike. The group took it in stride as usual. (Pun not intended.)

Stats: 5.7 miles; 1200' gain; 4.5 hours

Fun little Exercise

Dropping through Bacon Canyon

Emerging at the Junction from Bacon Canyon

No comments: