Blog

The Necessity of Desert Wanderings

The Necessity of Desert Wanderings

This past weekend, the forecast called for snow and unseasonably low temperatures. All of Durango seemed to be eyeing the mountains for one last ski expedition. Meanwhile, I was going to the desert. Admittedly the idea gave me pause, particularly the prospect of flash floods. Despite the skies rumbling with clouds and the snow-covered grass, we departed. How bad could it be?

I love these fly-by-the-seat weekends. We wound up camping at Hite under mottled skies and waking up to high clouds and perfectly cool weather. On Saturday, we biked up a dirt road, hiked up a canyon, and lolled about all afternoon amid towering red cliffs and blue skies. The next day, we set off in packrafts on the Dirty Devil River, a tiny and notoriously unpredictable thread that winds through sandstone canyons. The flows were perfect and we didn’t see a single other party—and nary a raindrop. At least temporarily, the weekend weather gods smiled upon us. Grateful. A few photos from the awesome adventure photographer Whit Richardson: