|Andrea and Nessie in the little "slot "section|
|Looking down into the box|
We walked downstream passing rusty cliffs and boulders with junipers emerging in the spaces and cracks. There were a few dry waterfalls to climb down or walk around. Dropping down into a brushy narrow section, there were hackberry trees as well.
The canyon opened up for awhile and became a sandy draw bordered with first welded ash deposits of white and then strange looking brown,black and greenish volcanics that had seams of some kind of blue and green copper minerals, pods of quartz and occasional globs of agate. A large ash tree, which I'm hoping will still survive, lay on its side in the sand.
Further downstream we came the narrowest part of the box. We climbed down an awkward little dry waterfall, and found ourselves in a slot of polished pink volcanic rock that had walls just over our heads. Above us was a second tier of the red cliffs. We followed the tight watercourse, climbing down a second dry waterfall, just a short ways when it terminated at much higher pour-off that was quite sheer. A few big cliffs closed in just beyond the bottom of the falls. On one was graffiti in a garish shade of blue. Below, the spray paint can lay in the sand. A kind of disappointing climax to our little journey, I wanted to at least pick up the can and any other trash that was down there, but there was no way to get down except to go back up, and then around and down.
|more of the mini "slot"|
|The mini" slot"|
|Looking down to the high waterfall|
|The lower canyon|
On the return we took an alternate canyon on the north side, quite by accident, so that our hike became a lollipop loop. Unlike almost every hike I do out in the desert,there were footprints all along our way on this warm Super Bowl Sunday. I know that the Ocotillo hikers visit here occasionally, and accessing this canyon from the road in Faulkner Canyon is pretty quick, with only one truly rough section if my memory serves me correctly. Still,it is unlikely you will see anyone and if they're not carrying a can of spray paint, you'll probably have a lot in common.