Backpacking the Gulch

Over the fall break I backpacked Grand Gulch with Brittany, Jaz, Cai, Meesh, Em, and Joel. We entered through Todie Canyon and exited Bullet Canyon. In the car on the way back yesterday I began to write down snapshots from the trip, then we all brainstormed out loud. These are brief notes about our experience over 5 days. 

the first yellow of fall on the cottonwood and willow leaves

the beautiful turquoise of new growth on a young pinyon 

the massive cottonwoods along bullet canyon 

Tangled, ancient junipers 

running and jumping on slickrock 

filling our vessels at the springs

creating homes in each of our campsites 

cooking round the mini stove each night

massage trains

song singin 

shoulder pains 

picking out thorns and seed pods from our shoes and socks 

the smell of sagebrush as we passed it 

dwellings and remains of the puebloans who once lived here – stone stackin’, mud mortarin’, wattle and daubin’ 

eatin cake and celebrating a birthday in the backcountry

celebrating the first day of fall 

poopin with a view

feeling paranoid for a few hours thinking we all got poison ivy because of slight itches on our bodies and then realizing we didn’t 

watching the holes in my shoes expand each day 

making up a story person by person popcorn style 

realizing we packed enough food for 2 weeks instead of 5 days 

the sound of the wind going through the canyons

the sound of silence 

the sound of the birds 

the smell of the kiva 

the little bat sounds 

how loud and annoying human sounds were, and how loud the sounds of ruffling bags felt 

how sweet it was to laugh

avoiding the crypto 

the feeling of being scratched on our legs 

communicating with woops through the canyon

taking a break like 20 minutes in 

watching joel hike with bike rack bags 

a little dragon fly 

flowers still in bloom

how magical the springs are this time of year 

tiny trees growing out of rocks 

being surrounded by the tall canyon walls 

all of our feet troubles 


all the little lizards 

the tiny frogs with red dots on them 

the difference in feeling of being up high and then down in the canyon 

watching the colors change in the sunset 

the stars and milky way 

walking through sandy washes.

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