As much as I enjoyed wandering around Valley of Fire on Wednesday, I
was eager to show some of my favorite places there with Jim.
And since it was cooler today -- and dogs are allowed on trails in the
park -- we took them with us, too. They both had fun. (Of course, they did;
they're Labrador retrievers, who know how to have fun everywhere they
Jim waits patiently on the White
Domes Trail for the dogs and me to catch up.
They're constantly distracted by
smells and I'm always taking pictures!
Today was rainy in Las Vegas, with some flooding. The northern
part of the city got about half of its annual rainfall in two days. One
or two inches doesn't sound like much -- unless your annual
rainfall is less than four inches!
I wrote extensively about this park in the last series of five
entries dated April 6
and showed a total of 160 photos. I won't repeat any of that here. This entry
has all new photos.
SCENES ON A CLOUDY DAY
We lucked out today with only a little bit of rain on our trip to the park
but it was mostly cloudy when we were sight-seeing and hiking. The sky was dark
and ominous at times, and partly sunny at others:
Low clouds on the descent through
a canyon to the west entrance to Valley of Fire SP
Dark clouds along White Domes Rd.
A bit of rain on White Domes Rd.
after our hike
The very next photo I took, a
couple miles away at Atlatl Rock -- blue sky!
I'm glad I got so many good photos in the park on Wednesday, when it
was sunny while I was there. I had to lighten some of today's pictures while
editing them because they were so dark.
I guess because of the threat of rain, even on a spring Saturday the
park wasn't crowded. There were fewer vehicles on the roads and at the
various trailheads while we were there from about 10 AM to noon.
WHITE DOMES ROAD
paid our $10 day use fee at the west gate, which was manned this time, and
headed for the White Domes loop trail. Jim really liked the rainbow of
colors along the White Domes Rd. and on the trail. The colors showed up
better in person than they do in these photos and were
very pretty despite the clouds.
Here are some photos
I took out and back on White Domes Rd.:
Even though I prefer the blue-sky photos I took along this road three
days ago, I have to admit there is beauty and drama in these pictures with the dark clouds.
I wish there were more established trails through these beautiful rock
formations. I don't know if it's safe for me to do any cross-country
hiking here, mostly because my sense of balance is deteriorating as I
WHITE DOMES TRAIL LOOP
When we got to the end of the road we parked at the trailhead for the White Domes
Trail, which was my favorite trail of the three I hiked on Wednesday.
Although White Domes Road was cloudy out and back, at this spot the
clouds were white and we could see some blue sky and sunshine.
We took both dogs 4/10ths of a mile down to the wash, which now had some
Jim and Casey start down the "chute."
Looking back up
It's easier to walk on this bedrock than on the
narrow, rocky trail at this point.
Erosion of the darker "desert varnish" on this rock
wall makes it look like it's dripping.
If I come back, I want to climb up there, too, to
see what's in the distance.
Like any good water dog, Casey wanted to get wet!
This wash was bone dry when I was here
three days ago.
Looking at more water in the slot canyon, Jim said,
"Nah, let's turn around."
Most people, including us, turned around and returned to the trailhead the same way
we came down the "chute" instead of
going through the slot canyon and continuing up the other side of the
rock formations to complete a loop.
We just didn't know how deep the water would get, and
I couldn't remember if the footing was good all the way through the
slot. The water was too muddy to see the bottom.
After we got back up to the parking lot another couple told us they
waded through the water and found that it was mostly sand, not rocks,
underfoot. Oh, well.
I'm glad it was dry when I was here on
Wednesday so I could walk through the slot canyon and do the
entire loop. Jim did get to see the best part of the loop today, however.
The dogs had fun on that trail, too. They love to explore new places and meet
new people. They are both good at negotiating rocks and other rough terrain
-- even Cody, who's getting old for a Lab at 13.
I took close-up
pictures of some really cool rocks on this trail today. I love the
colors and details:
I also showed Jim the petroglyphs at Atlatl Rock. He climbed up the
metal steps to see the best display while I held onto the dogs below.
platform is 60-70 feet above the ground, I'd estimate.
out some of the petroglyphs from the platform.
some more symbols right below the platform.
I also showed him the
drawings on the lower wall that most people
apparently don't know are there.
Both times I was at the rock I didn't see anyone else looking on the
rock wall at ground level to the left of the stairs; they all
went up to the platform even though they could see me taking photographs
We drove through the Atlatl Rock CG and Arch Rock CG (both are still full),
then exited the park on the east side and headed toward Lake Mead.
Next entry: scenes from Lake Mead National Recreation
"Runtrails & Company" - Sue Norwood, Jim O'Neil,
Cody the ultra Lab, and Casey-pup
© 2016 Sue Norwood and Jim O'Neil