The Gulch 2010 – Day 7

Synopsis: Climb Point 6167. September 16, 2010.

Today, the goal was to climb a butte I’ll call Point 6167, since it’s marked with the benchmark 6167 (its elevation) on the map. I remembered it from the 2005 trip as being a nice climb with superb views.

The basic itinerary was to climb out Sleepy Hollow, round the butte overlooking it and then head north to Point 6167.


This area in Sleepy Hollow was a pretty nice campsite in 2005, and it was our original target campsite, but since then flooding has made it much less nice.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Volcanic boulders on our way to Point 6167, which is the prominent butte on the skyline.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Reid, Ben, Russ, and Pete hiking to Point 6167.

Photo by Erin Tatge.
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Already it was pretty hot out on the slickrock. I had planned a route closer to the butte overlooking Sleepy Hollow than we had followed the last trip, thinking it would be a bit flatter, but it turned out to still be pretty rough.


View back towards The Gulch from partway up Point 6167. Note the oddly placed pothole; we later explored it, and it was pretty grungy and dirty.

Photo by Ben Miller.
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Ben enjoying the view.

Photo by Erin Tatge.
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About halfway up, we paused. Pete elected to hang out in the shade while we went to the top.


Heading for the top.

Photo by Pete Wiringa.
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Pete photographing us from his shady resting spot.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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The way up was a little airy feeling but the objective danger was OK. The last few feet were a challenge. I don’t think I’d want to take people up something any more difficult without a protection.

Ben adds: It did not help that every path Reid took up crumbled beneath his feet and tumbled off the side of the mountain.


Russ topping out while Ben and Reid look on.

Photo by Pete Wiringa.
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Me keeping an eye on Ben as he tops out. Looking west with Durfey Mesa in the background.

Photo by Erin Tatge.
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Russ on top of Point 6167.

Photo by Ben Miller.
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Ben on top of Point 6167. The Fifty-Mile Cliffs are on the skyline.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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The bluff overlooking Sleepy Hollow (near) and the mesa we circumnavigated on Day 5 (far). Our path to get to Point 6167 came around the right side of the former.

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After a few minutes enjoying the view, it was time to go back down and find a nice spot for some lunch.


Ben climbing down.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Pete and Ben after turning around.

Photo by Erin Tatge.
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Dead ponderosa pine in a draw.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Water and potholes are surprisingly common in this extremely desolate-looking slickrock area.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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It was really quite hot out and folks were fading fast. Finally we found a decent lunch spot in a crack under the shade of a cliff. It was good rock shade and reasonably cool. (Rock shade is better than tree shade because the rock itself stays cool and doesn’t radiate heat.)


Ben vacuum-sealed his bagels.

Photo by Ben Miller.
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Everyone was pretty low on water even though we’d only been out for a half day and we each had 3 liters. I headed up the crack to look for water and found a decent puddle.

It was also a pretty scenic crack.


Exploring the crack.

Photo by Ben Miller.
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Erin fools around while waiting for us to finish pumping.

Photo by Russ Grandgeorge.
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After the fill-up, we had to go back out into the blazing sun and start home.


Slogging home. It was pretty much as hot as it looks.

Photo by Pete Wiringa.
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There was a lot of up and over, and it was very nice to get back to camp and start thinking about food.


Hanging out while dinner cooks.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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After dinner, Ben and I went across the canyon again to see the sunset and enjoy being out in the desert, which was now cooling off rapidly.


Ben photographing the sunset.

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Swirls of rock across the canyon from camp.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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The Gulch streambed. Our camp is in the trees to the left where the stream goes out of view.

Photo by Reid Priedhorsky.
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Moon over The Gulch canyon walls after sunset.

Photo by Ben Miller.
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Please continue reading on Day 8.

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