Dixie National Forest
Camping along the road to Oak Grove is limited to designated camping sites and down beside campsite 3 is a small loop trail signed for hiking. It follows decaying road beds which join and continue on, after many miles, to the Cottonwood Forest Wilderness. Just past the opening in the fence for the trail are signs declaring "closed area" with very large letters in order to run people off, but the smaller letters below add "to motor vehicles". I head up and to the right to loop around the small, deeply red canyon.
|Following the old road up the canyon.|
|The plants around are juniper, sage, and some cholla cactus.|
The day is hot, but it is already noon. The climb is easy. At the junction, I ponder the continuation of the road, but there is no time for that. Instead, I follow the many footsteps out toward the edge of the cliff. This is soft sand and much harder to walk on even though it is flat.
|The other road that meets here.|
|Out among the mesas and plains, there is just a little bit of water in a reservoir visible.|
Out near the edge of the cliff, the view is quite nice. The continuation of the road winds along the edge of the mesa to the south. Silver Reef lies below. All sorts of things lie in the panorama to the north.
|The small town of Silver Reef.|
|The road continues along and above the Red Reef.|
|Many hills, and behind them mountains including Signal Peak.|
Trudging back through the sand is just a little bit harder as it is slightly uphill. The second road is a much more direct route and I am back to the start quickly.
|A high potrero is a bit green.|
|A look at Signal Peak from much lower down.|
©2015 Valerie Norton
Posted 16 July 2015