July 12, 2016

Bill took me on a shortcut through Stout Canyon instead of driving further north on SR89 and catching SR14 west as I’d traveled to Cedar Breaks before.

Road closed sign Stout Canyon FR063 north Dixie National Forest Utah

A gravel road with an immediate ‘Road Closed 5 miles ahead’ sign.  As we stopped by a dumpster a local rode up on an OHV towing a trailer full of junk to throw away.  When asked about the road he said lots of road equipment traffic repairing a wash out but it’s passable.  So off we went, figuring we could always turn around.  Gorgeous countryside in the Dixie National Forest with meadows and forest plus glimpses of towering cliffs.

Hoodoos Stout Canyon FR063 North Dixie National Forest Utah

Stopped to check out an amphitheater of hoodoos.  Actually had to turn around—guess Bill didn’t hear my shout to stop—then parked in a gravel pit and walked a ways into the trees.  The almost delicate sculpture of rock intrigues me.

Road repair Stout Canyon FR063 North Dixie National Forest Utah

The road follows Swains Creek, or “crick” as Bill says, which must have flashed during the last rain several weeks ago but enough repairs were completed to make a one way passage.  Didn’t see any working trucks until the way back.

Old burn Stout Canyon FR063 North Dixie National Forest Utah

Wildflowers & butterfly Stout Canyon FR063 North Dixie National Forest UtahWildflowers often flourish after fire.  I think this burn could be from 2013.  Although I don’t visit public lands to see char I’m glad to see the return of a healthy forest after wildfire.




Stout Canyon sign SR14 East Utah

Meadow mountain moon Stout Canyon FR063 South Dixie National Forest Utah

Back on the paved SR14 after a little over an hour ‘shortcut’ and off to Cedar Breaks National Monument to see wildflowers.  In fact we also drove Stout Canyon on the way home under much better light conditions and a partial moon.

Swains Creek Stout Canyon Dixie National Forest Utah

Had to stop by the ‘Crick’ to soak in some flowing water energy, such a rarity to see any more with living on a high and dry plateau.  Sparkling rays filled my eyes and brain with smiling sunshine.  I cupped my ears to hear the gentle song.  Drank in the moisture laden air, as did my dry desert skin.

Private home Stout Canyon FR063 Utah

Back past privately owned homes, some of which looked pretty nice.  Wonder if they are off grid.

Smoke from Fuller Fire on Kaibab Plateau from SR89 S Utah

Then back to SR89 pavement and south to Kanab with a view of smoke rising on the Kaibab Plateau from the Fuller Fire.