Monday, March 11, 2013

Hiking in Vekol Valley

After reading the title, my coworkers would think we were nuts to decide to hike in Vekol Valley.  I work in the area everyday.  I know the risks, and honestly, they are small.  Besides I ran into a Jeep load of old men yesterday who hiked up to cave paintings and I was dying to check them out.  Unfortunately I didn't get the best directions to them.

A BLM Ranger friend suggested easy to get to petroglyphs right off of BLM 8027.

This small rock mound was chock full of petroglyphs.

We headed over to a larger hill where we were told more petroglyphs could be found.  Unfortunately, we came up empty and made our way back to the Jeep.

Based on the limited instructions I got from the hikers, we knew we needed to head west to Johnson's Well and south to the Game Water.  Once there, it was a crap shoot.  We were surrounded by mountains and took our best guess.  We made our way towards this mountain face.

Hiked all the way up and found cut outs that were probably home to animals, but no signs of cave paintings or petroglyphs.

We did stumble upon a waterfall, well, its a waterfall during rains.  There was a small pool of rainwater that the dogs were thrilled to find.

The rocks at the waterfall had some beautiful lichen growing on it.

Everyone was watered and cooled off.  We began our decent, which was much easier than our ascent.

A family photo. 

Back at the Game Water, we watered up and had some snacks while the sun began its westward descent. The desert is nice and green after all the recent rains.

Saddled up with two tired pups and we were northbound towards I-8.  We reached pavement the sun set behind the mountains, coloring the sky in gradients of blue, purple and orange.

We didn't find the illusive cave paintings this trip, but we'll do some digging and find it someday.  We got to get out, stretch our legs, exhaust the dogs and see some unexpected petroglyphs.