In the low desert of southern Utah these days, when mid–September temperatures not only approach triple digits but also have the audacity to linger there, it is time to head to the high country for a hike along the redrock near Cedar Breaks National Monument.
Judy points out the blazes, so we must be going in the right direction.
Soon views emerge of Cedar Breaks and the 50–million–year–old lake and river deposits of the Claron Formation.
The Crystal Springs/Blowhard trail winds through spruce and fir and towering aspens that stab at the sky. It is not inside the actual amphitheater of the monument but is along its southern periphery.
Our views continue as we traipse through the low shrubby manzanita.
The nubby texture of the aspens intrigues me.
Park rangers do enjoy pointing at things, even if we are off duty!
Here, the elevation wanders somewhere around 9,000 feet above sea level while the highest point in Cedar Breaks reaches10,350 feet. It is soothing to any heat–weary summer soul to know that, within a few months, these mountains and this trail will be buried beneath a blanket of snow.