http://photos3.meetupstatic.com/photos/event/5/6/b/0/event_184762192.jpegColumbus Canyon (http://www.gjhikes.com/2009/12/columbus-canyon-and-lower-red-canyon.html)
cross country hike and looking for moki steps (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moki_steps) to the top
Last Sunday (http://www.meetup.com/WesternSlopeAdventurers/events/91393642/) we went up the Moki steps in Gold Star Canyon, also known as Otto's Staircase. Well, one of our WSA members told me there is another set of moki or Otto steps, this one in Columbus Canyon so here we go . . .
The hike will be largely off trail so come with sturdy shoes, maybe a pair of leather gloves to keep your hands from being scraped by brush, rough rock and an occasional slip on a gravel slope (ooppsss, I'm the guy known for slipping or falling down.).
Once we find the Moki Steps we will set up a hand-line of rope or webbing for everyone to get safely to the top of whatever we scramble up.
We will want to set up a few cars at the expected 'top' of the hike, at Cold Shivers Point. We can do that after meeting initally in the Devil's Kitchen picnic area parking lot.
Meet at Devil's (http://rexmario.blogspot.com/2009/08/liberty-cap.html) Kitchen/Serpents Trail Picnic area at 9 AM. We will take a few cars up to the Cold Shivers Point parking area in anticipation that we will be able to work our way to the head of Columbus Canyon and up to the Rim Rock Drive level.
The forecast (http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?site=gjt&zmx=1&zmy=1&map.x=169&map.y=133) will tell us if we are going to do the whole hike or a shorter variation. Keep in mind that a hike plan made a week in advance may have to be changed to accomodate the weather of the day.
Dress in layers that you can easily add or shed as temps throughout the day will fluctuate. Light weight hiking boot or sturdy 'running-type' shoe with rubber soles for traction Wind/ rain shell jacket Warm hat(s) and light gloves; leather or fake leather, close fitting gloves Trekking poles (if you like them)http://photos3.meetupstatic.com/photos/event/5/9/1/2/event_184762802.jpeg (http://rexmario.blogspot.com/2009/10/gold-star-canyon-north-loop.html) Water (and a thermos of hot soup or beverage) High energy snacks AND a hearty lunch Chemical heating packs (https://www.google.com/search?q=chemical+heat+pack+for+hand+warmer&hl=en&tbo=u&rlz=1T4ADRA_enUS423US431&source=univ&tbm=shop&sa=X&ei=MBy8UNyeEaT5ygGuzoHICA&ved=0CFgQsxg&biw=1366&bih=498) (optional: 2 or 3 in your pack in the event hands get really cold) Closed cell foam pad (~2'x2' that you can sit on at the lunch stop; an insulator between you and the ground which is getting cold this time of year) Camera, binoculars, GPS (any gadgets that you like) Headlamp (just in case we are having so much fun that we get back later than expected. A headlamp is a good thing to always have in your pack this time of year; along with a warm hat and light gloves.) Webbing or rope (need a total of 100' so 3 or 4 pieces of 30' each. We will use this as a hand line for anyone who wants a little more security at the Moki Steps (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moki_steps) if we make an attempt to get up them. If you do not know what I mean by webbing or rope, that is OK. We will have enough folks who do bring this, that we will be covered.) Climbing harness (not necessary but if a few people who own them, bring them, we will have one more safety back-up in the event the moki-steps are challenging). DOGS:
I wish, but since this is a hike in the national monument, they say NO to FIDO.
If you do not want to do the whole day hike you are welcome to walk the first ~2 mile (4 miles round trip) with us into the lower reaches of the canyon. This is an exploratory hike so please be patient with route finding and be willing to scramble with both feet and hands.
Doug Van Etten[masked]