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Friday, October 3, 2014

Utah Highway 12

Devils Garden

Cottonwoods on Escalante River

Aspens in Dixie Forest

Utah Highway 12 from Bryce Canyon to Torrey is one of the most scenic drives you can take. In addition there are so many great side trips it would take months to see it all. Hole in the Rock Road is a dirt road that goes over 50 miles ending at a cliff above Lake Powell. In 1879 a Mormon wagon train cut a primitive route in the cliff to get down to and cross the Colorado River.

Many great hiking trails start from Hole in the Rock Road and it gives access to numerous slot canyons such as Peek-a-Boo, Spooky, Zebra, and Tunnel. We went as far as Devils Garden and then headed to Boulder. One stretch takes you on a narrow ridge with a ribbon of green cottenwoods  along the river. In another month they will all be colored yellow. The trailhead to Lower and Upper Calf Creek is also in the area and Lower Calf Creek falls is certainly one of the most spectacular places in this area.

From Boulder you climb the plateau into the Dixie National Forest where the Aspen are now at their peak fall colors. Boulder is also the start of the Burr Trail which joins Notom-Bullfrog Road, a dirt road going from Highway 24 to the Bullfrog Marina on Lake Powell. Later, if it is not flooded out we plan to take both of these.

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