The summer days are over and the nights are getting cooler. My yard and garden isn’t requiring as much maintenance now. This is an important time of the year for me. For a short period of time, it isn’t too hot or too cold for hiking and it is easier to get away for a Saturday of hiking after a long week of work.
Saturday morning, David and I drove down to the Moab Utah area and then west to the top of Long Canyon for a quick look around. We were looking for a natural arch that exists somewhere near the top of the canyon. We even drove down Long Canyon for a ways to see if we could see it from below. There aren’t many places that a natural arch could hide but we failed to find it.
We then drove back down the Island-in-the-Sky road to the gravel road heading west along the south rim of Mineral Canyon. The canyon is about ten miles long before it dumps in the Green River, and has three major levels. We were looking for Mineral Canyon Arch which can be found one of the upper levels, less than a mile from the first major “dry falls” drop off. By exploring the area higher up the canyon, we were able to find a good place to descend the cliffs to the canyon floor. It was then a fairly easy hike along the rocky canyon floor to Mineral Canyon Arch, hanging on the north cliffs.
Along the way we found a couple of small class “D” natural arches called Split Top Arch and Rathole Arch. (I actually used Rathole Arch to get down the cliffs to the canyon floor.) On the way out, we hiked further up the canyon to find an easier way to the top.
We still had quite a bit of daylight left in the day so we drove up to the Canyonlands National Park “Island-in-the-Sky” area to watch the sun go down over the White Rim Canyons below us.
Another excellent day to be out and enjoying the country!