Thursday, February 27, 2014

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

There's a land that I've heard of once in a lullaby.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Return

It's as deep into No Man's Land as Tom has been. Half hour drive to get to Jackson Ladder, 15 to 20 minutes to climb the ladder, two hour hike to Pot Hole Arch and everything past there is No Man's Land. Each time Tom travels here he figures six hours of his day is gone getting to and back. That generally leaves two or three hours to explore No Man's Land before time to return. Tom has set 3pm as his absolute latest departure time but it's 3:30 now and much like the siren of the mermaid No Man's Land keeps calling him and won't let go. In the middle of the first picture (can click on them to make them larger) you see a jagged rock up cropping pointing to the right and a little below it and to the right another one pointing straight up. Between them is where Tom descends Jackson Ladder each evening. The trail goes close to the straight drop off on the right side of the picture to get there. He has about two and a half hours to reach Jackson Ladder or he'll be descending it in the dark. Tom's been trying to get out of No Man's Land for half an hour and has yet to find his tracks. One petrified sand dune looks pretty much like another. Tom sees two ravens land. Experience tells him they are territorial. Several hikes ago Tom saw two of them sitting above Pot Hole Arch and he figures it is the same two. Tom changes direction heading for the ravens and as expected they are perched at Pot Hole Arch where Tom quickly finds his trail and continues his journey.

Deep Into No Man's Land

It's Tom's 14th day of exploration on Amasa Back and 3rd full day into No Man's Land which is the northern most area. In three full days Tom has seen one set of human footprints not his own. Following mainly old cow trails, current game trails, and creek beds and washes that turn into pour offs Tom is still searching for the elusive water source or way down to the river. But each time he thinks he might have something they all end the same.

No Man's Land

Continuing to explore No Man's Land Tom finds a little tree in an alcove that came one foot up and then made a west turn for two feet to reach for the sun. Later he finds a natural bridge and while checking it out spots an arch the other side of the little canyon and finally finds a few pot holes with water in them.

Amasa Back (Day Fourteen)

Tom is spending a third day exploring the No Man's Land section of Amasa Back. He finds a half corral or rough fence of types on a steep slope with huge drop offs. Exploring it his guess is cattle used to walk down it and be unable to turn around or get back up it and the cowboys appear to have made a fence of sorts to prevent them from doing so. While it doesn't look very formidable in the pictures there are more holes drilled in the rock indicating there were more steel poles at one time.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Amasa Back (Day Thirteen)

Tom has ask Evelyn to join him today. They have hiked together before and Evelyn knows a lot about the various tribes and their habitat. Evelyn spots mud on the ceilings of the overhangs much like Grand Gulch but nobody seems to know why.
Tom thinks this looks like a plant of some sort that got engulfed in the rock and Evelyn believes that there is a chemical reaction in a crack in the rock. Evelyn and Tom find seven more Spanish petroglyphs only one of which you can see very well with out highlighting. Another painted pottery sherd and more corrugated pottery sherds.
There's a red line running down the rock, appears natural. Just to the left of it and center screen there's a little Martian looking guy. Can you see the what was red and white sash running across his chest?
In order, hammer, knife, hammer well used, grinding stone, and tool bench.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Amasa Back (Day Twelve)

Tom has asked Alf a photographer he met on Hurrah Pass one day to join him on Amasa Back. Alf has a different perspective in his photography and in particular Tom has ask him to see if he can bring out the fine lines in the Spanish petroglphys. Alf has sent the first few pictures but says the Spanish petroglyphs are a problem and may require a night trip with flash. Oh boy, can never get enough of the Amasa Back. If you're interested in Alf's work or prints he can be found here.

Amasa Back (Day Eleven) Going Home

Tom has at least a two hour hike back to Jackson Ladder if he can even find his way out of the part of No Man's Land he's just discovered. The Go Pro camera battery has gone dead, the Fuji is about out of juice, and Tom is too. This was way more than he expected and with no headlamp for darkness and finding himself a one canteen man on a two canteen day there's no room for more mistakes.