Dolores Triangle 16-20 Oct 2012
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10-30-2012, 11:01 PM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Conifer, CO
Originally Posted by
Awesome trip and report Dan! Been wondering about that area for some time
Thanks Perry! It is totally worth checking out. I recommend it highly.
Finally got around to writing up the last day of the trip:
Friday 10/19/12 Day 4 – Moab to Grand Junction via CR350 with river crossing exploration. The route (dark blue) looks like this:
After breakfast I had a quick visit with the Needles camping crew at City Market in Moab. Then headed back out to Dewey Bridge up 128. Another perfect day weather-wise, clear and sunny. My plan was to first check out the secondary Dolores Ford near Dewey (which Martin, Shawn Cardinal and I spotted during CM 2012) Then check out an old ford that is now closed from one side by locating and approaching from the side that is still open. Then head towards Grand Junction via a different route that heads southeast and then travels north through the eastern side of the Dolores Triangle.
This shows the location of crossing #2, which is at the blue arrow. The usual crossing (Lake Bottom) is at the red arrow.
At this crossing you enter the river and drive about 500 feet downstream before exiting on the north bank. It was about 8 inches deeper than the other crossing at it’s deepest. Here are some pictures:
After successfully crossing I headed up into the triangle to find the old ford. Here are some pics:
Made it to the old river ford location. It was closed on the south side when the state bought some land and established an outdoor school. They gated the road coming in from that side and the public is not allowed through. I was checking it out from the north bank. It was quite overgrown.
Did a little exploring and found a couple of okay campsites and some pretty views.
Got a view of the school across the river.
Did some exploring in a side canyon and found an interesting structure. No idea what the history is.
And the token lizard shot.
Finally headed back out and northeast to CR350. On the map it looked about the same distance as DS Road coming in. But it took about twice as long to travel because is was a lot rougher and rockier. At one point it turns back southwest toward Gateway for a while and I began to think I was on the wrong road. But it turned in the right direction again just before it would have hit the state line.
There began to be people as I got closer to the DS Road intersection. First Deer Season in Utah started the next day, and the hunters were getting their camps set up. At one point I came to an interesting rock formation tucked into the trees. I thought it would make an awesome campsite. Around the corner there was a track into it and it was pretty cool.
Within another 20 minutes I was back out to the state line on DS Road. Back to Grand Junction and civilization.
All in all this was an awesome trip and I am glad I got the time to check the area out. The Dolores Triangle had always been a mystery to me, even though I had spent a lot of my life around its edges. Now that I know what’s out there I am stoked to get back and do some more exploring. I covered the primary routes, but there are tons of side roads that I never even touched. The geography is interesting and beautiful, and there is plenty more discovering to be done.
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