Cathedral Rock Hike at Mt Charleston - 07/30/2019 Hike Notes

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This page last updated on 08/02/2019
(Fig. 01) Taken from the trail in the aspen grove
(Fig. 02) My hiking partner, Jim Herring and his daughter Christina

(Fig. 03)

07/30/2019 Hike Notes: Today, the last day of Christina's two week visit, we hiked Mt. Charleston's Cathedral Rock. It was a beautiful sunny day with a relatively strong breeze that made it 15 degrees cooler than in the city. It was in the mid 80's vice the 100 plus degrees in the city. Even though we had planned to have a picnic cookout in the Cathedral Rock Picnic Area after the hike, we found it closed due to the extreme fire danger. Against my better judgement, in spite of my equalism and balance problems, I decided to try this trail again. Surprisingly, I did better than I anticipated. As we climbed up this trail we found dozens of  butterflies (Fig. 04), flirting amongst the wild flowers along the edges of the trail (Figs. 05 thru 07). As we worked our way through the avalanche chute of quaking aspen trees we had many great views looking up at this imposing limestone rock (Fig. 08). Near the end of the run through the avalanche chute, the trail runs up under the Echo Cliffs (Fig. 09), tall limestone cliffs that lie just east of Cathedral Rock. In a shaded wooded section surrounded by Ponderosa Pines about halfway up the trail there is a wooden bench. There is a short detour to the south (left) that takes you to a seasonal waterfall (Fig. 10). Today there was merely a trickle of water flowing over the two stage waterfall. As the main trail continues up, following the old road through wooded and open areas with great views down the canyon and of the steep east face of Cathedral Rock to reach the summit of 8,585 feet, required an additional climb of nearly 500 more feet. As this was the halfway point, having climbed nearly 500 feet up, I decided to exercise good judgement and not go any further. I investigated the waterfall area and waited on the bench for Jim and Christina to continue the hike to the top and then return. Also spotted some additional wildlife, some Cliff Chipmunks (Fig. 11) and some birds (Fig. 12).

(Fig. 04)

(Fig. 05)

(Fig. 06)

(Fig. 07)

(Fig. 08)
(Fig. 09)
(Fig. 10)
(Fig. 11)
(Fig. 12)

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