Telephone Canyon & Flowers - Zion National Park - May 2008
Ram in Zion? Mon Dieu! Well, we had a project to do, so Ram assembled a top team, we got up really early and... and... and... and the weather did not cooperate.
Five in the morning – Nat is uncertain, Matt is still asleep, and Ram is wolfing down Triscuits. At Potato Hollow.
Nice looking skies, at sunrise, out there past Campsite 4.
Mmmm. A little too threatening for the BIG PROJECT. How about the classic consolation prize, Telephone Canyon?
Well, gentlemen? Happy with this decision? (Not really, but what ya gonna do?)
Mules Ears (Wyethia arizonica)
Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)
Ram (Stevus canyoneerii)
Ramraseae (Ramras Family)
We rapped in, off some burned stump which, surprisingly, I do not have a picture of.
As I had not been through the canyon in quite a while, I was interested in what the (bolted) anchor situation was, so I took pictures of many of the anchors in the canyon. Telephone Canyon was first descended, as far as we know, by Brian Cabe and myself in September 2000; and we bolted a couple of the drops. Since then, quite a few more bolts have shown up.
Here is the first bolted anchor IN the canyon. You can see (A) original single bolt put in by Brian and me, September 2000; (B) Petzl Long-life bolt (suitable for limestone and other very-hard rocks, not suitable for sandstone); and (C) empty hole from a Petzl Long-life bolt that pulled out.
I had heard about these Petzl Long-life limestone bolts here, so I went ahead and put in a good second bolt.
Looking down-rap at the next station. Ram in a pothole, Mr. Brecha out in front.
Next station. Bolt on right is Pika hanger, the work of Mr. Cabe. Bolt on left, probably mine.
“Well, gentlemen? Happy with this decision?” Mr. Brecha on rappel.
And Mr. Ram, en rappel.
Nat Smale of Salt Lake City, our fourth, actually showing some color. Soon to be on rappel.
Hmmm. I bet this is the rap where my rope got tweaked. That sling should really have been extended over the edge.
Looking downcanyon in Telephone Canyon.
Yup, looks like a rope-chewer for sure!
Some nice streaking and huecos.
Here’s a pretty good natural anchor for the next rap.
Setting up the rope for the second stage of this rap.
Next rap – dicey ‘natural anchor’, surely moved by Mr. Cabe and myself from elsewhere in the canyon, disrupting the delicate ecology…
Nat on rap, while Matt figures out what’s next.
Mr. Ram, awkward rappel start.
Mr. Brecha, now of Clearfield, Utah.
Hard to reach, “new” bolted anchor for the last rap. I think a rock fell out.
Ram launching out on the last rap of the day.
The early finish allowed fetching the car during daylight hours. I took the opportunity to work on the ever-unfinished Zion wildflower catalog.
But first, a few flora from the West Rim trail area, near where we re-gained the trail from Telephone. There was a bit of a riparian area, and a few interesting flowers there.
Lily Family (Liliaceae)
Sunflower Family (Asteraceae)
Uinta Groundsel, closeup of flowers.
These ‘gentlemen’ were somewhat surprised to learn that what they were doing was vandalism, but I must say, they did set enthusiastically to work erasing their ‘work’ when I suggested it would be a good idea.
Went up to Lava Point to fetch the car in the middle of the afternoon. Took some flower pictures at the Wildcat Canyon Trailhead.
Some yellow flower. Let’s call it Zion Yellow Mystery Flower #1. Brandt? Dave? Sue? TW?
Closeup of the flower heads.
Amelanchier utahensis koehne
Rose Family (Rosacaceae)
Utah Serviceberry – closeup of blossoms, branches, leaves.
Lots of this up there, and elsewhere in Zion this year. Obviously a Lupine, but which one? Shows with blue and with white flowers, this patch being almost entirely white. On the ZNP wildflower list is:
Closeup of the blossoms. (The leaves don’t look particularly broad to me…)
Really have no idea on this one, and did not take a good overview of the plant.
Closeup of the flowers. Looks vaguely “Milkweed”ish. Zion White Mystery Flower #2
This one’s a bit easier, though it was challenging to photograph.
Larkspur or Delphinium
Larkspur blossom up close …
Larkspur up close and personal, showing the private parts.
Another yellow mystery plant… sleuthed out by Wyoming Dave (thanks Dave!)
Sunflower Family (Asteraceae)
Closeup of blossom – not yet fully open. Pale Agoseris
Off the Kolob Terrace road, at the Right Fork trailhead, where the Pinion-Juniper Forest burned two years ago, the Cactii are doing very well, thank you. here’s some:
Cactus Family (Cactaceae)
Looking down into one of the blossoms.
With lots of water this spring, there is lots of new growth on the cactii. Note the new growth looks quite different until it becomes “cactus-like”.
A really small flower. Fremont Phacelia Phacelia fremontii – Boraginaceae Family.
And here’s the overview shot of the plant. Overall height 1″ to 2″.
Another quite small flower Whitedaisy tidytips – Layia glandulosa – Asteraceae family
An overview of
Whitedaisy tidytips – Layia glandulosa
No mystery here – one of Zion’s muy dominent species:
Palmer’s Penstemon (aka Balloon Flower)
Penstemon palmeri gray
Figwort family (Scrophulariaceae)
Looking in at the blooms…
And that’s our show for today – hope you enjoyed it.