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Reefer Madness

Southwest Tour (cont)


DAY 4-6

“I don’t want conventional things in life. I really don’t. I spend a lot of time traveling, being on the road, and away from friends and family. I worry about being too selfish with my time. Day told me there’s no such thing as ‘being selfish. ‘Selfish’ exists because of other people’s judgements, which easily become our own. It’s alright when time is spent doing things where your true passions lie. (They) are what expand compassion and growth and make you beautiful.”

We say goodbye to Zion after I get my fix of huckleberry pie (mmm) and drive to Capitol Reef hoping to spend a few days canyoneering at Cottonwood Wash. The park is a little underdeveloped compared to its Mighty 5 cousins Bryce Canyon and Zion, and upon arriving at the visitor center that night, we find out there will be thunderstorms the next few days. Flash flood warnings close Cottonwood Wash 🙁

We wake up the next morning and decide to do a day hike up the Cohab Canyon trail, as it’s littered with multiple slot canyons and scrambling opportunities.

The weather goes from sunny skies to abrupt thunderstorms. It gets so bad that at one point, Keane and I are forced to sheek shelter underneath a sandstone cave.

All in all, the weather is rugged, and we come back to camp that night to a wet tent and lightning illuminating the sky. No one ever said the West was forgiving 🙂

Next stop- Wyyooming!


Arizona Slots

Keane and I decided to drive to Page, Arizona to hit up some slot canyons while visiting his grandparents in Phoenix. As we entered through Navajo country, we noticed a hitchhiker making his way up the 89 freeway, trudging his way through the 100 degree heat. We decide to give him a lift and after he gets in, we learn that his car had broken down the previous month, and he’d been hitchhiking the past couple of weeks as a means to getting around (in this case, to check on a friend, 40 miles away from his Chapter House). His entire family- even his sisters- have taken up welding, and they often overlook the potential safety hazards (especially for eyes) to make ends meet. He’s a soft-spoken and optimistic guy in his mid 30s, and my heart gets a little heavy when he starts talking about his daughter, how she’s hoping to apply to college in a couple of years. We drop him off at Lechee, and reminded of the socioeconomic reality that many people across the country face, we trudge on.

Needless to say, we eventually get to Antelope, and the grandeur is all sorts of cray:


Since the guided tour ended with some sunlight left (you’re not allowed in without being part of one), we decided to explore another, more isolated canyon by ourselves. Not a soul, and just as lovely: