As Bob is packing his gear this morning, he finds the largest centipede I have ever seen beside his tent.  This could be one of the reasons I carry a tent.

  Four inch centipede
10-9-2008 @ 7:23

     We leave a little after 8:00, about a half-hour after the Phoenix group.  After eight days of hiking, I am in a lot better shape than when we started this hike, so I decide to put the hammer down, shift this baby into high gear, and motor up the trail.  I set a hard pace all the way to Indian Hollow.  We travel the three miles in a little more than an hour.  Jumpup Canyon to the left only looks narrow until you compare it with the extremely narrow Indian Hollow.  We drop our packs and explore up Indian Hollow a few hundred yards, but it looks like it's going to be a long ways before we break out of this slot, so we decide to go back and continue up Jumpup.  In just a little ways, we find an unusual lizard crossing the creek bed.

Jumpup Canyon
10-9-2008 @ 9:26
Indian Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 9:29
Neonate Chuckwalla Lizard
10-9-2008 @ 9:50

     It's less than one more mile to Kwagunt Hollow where we break out of the slot canyons we've been in for most of this hike.

Kwagunt Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 10:05
Looking up Jumpup from Kwagunt Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 10:08

    We start up Kwagunt Hollow, which I expected to be pretty easy, but it is not.  I'm surprised with the number of boulders and amount of scrambling required.

A very rough Kwagunt Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 10:14
White Astor
10-9-2008 @ 10:37

     Within a ten-minute stretch, we find two different fossilized shells in the rocks.

A fossilized shell
10-9-2008 @ 10:37
A fossilized shell
10-9-2008 @ 10:47

     We are approaching a large waterfall and find a trail bypassing it to the right.  The bypass trail is extremely steep, somewhat reminiscent of the Boucher Trail.  At the top of the bypass is a narrow trail with very minor exposure that leads to the waterfall.  We decide to not make camp at the waterfall this evening and instead continue on until reaching the cottonwood trees where we stopped on day one.  That way our climb out tomorrow will be short and in the shade the whole morning.

Keith on the first bypass
10-9-2008 @ 10:54
Keith on the first bypass
10-9-2008 @ 10:57
The first waterfall
10-9-2008 @ 11:01

     In a few minutes, we come to a second waterfall and another bypass trail to the left.  After that we find some flowing water.  There actually have been many pools of water since we started up Kwagunt.

Keith on the second bypass
10-9-2008 @ 11:08
Flowing water
10-9-2008 @ 11:14

     In another half-hour, we come to an interesting rock that reminds me of the Flying Saucer Rock on the Bill Hall - Thunder River Trail.  We stop for lunch by some ledges and several more pools of water.  I keep thinking the trail will get easier after this, but we still have one more small pour-off to get past via another bypass trail to the right.  Eventually, we get to the point of walking in the creek bed.

An interesting rock
10-9-2008 @ 11:45
One of many ledges
10-9-2008 @ 12:13
Looking up Kwagunt Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 12:22

     I'm pooped and ready to be at camp, but this drainage seems to go on forever.  We finally break out into the open and see the cottonwood trees ahead.  The Esplanade trail junction cairn we saw the first day means we are only a few minutes away from the cottonwood trees and our camp tonight.  We pull into the trees just before 2:30.  Our Phoenix friends are here also. 

Bob in Kwagunt Hollow
10-9-2008 @ 1:40
Cairn at a trail junction
10-9-2008 @ 2:20

     There simply are no good places to rest here, much less make camp.  About the best I can do is find a place big enough for my sleeping bag only.  I'm not even going to try to put up my tent.  Keith makes a small place on the leaves under the trees for his stuff.

Richard's bed on night eight
10-9-2008 @ 6:13
Keith's bed on night eight
10-9-2008 @ 6:13

     Our plan tomorrow is to be up at 4:30 and try to get away by 6:00.  We are leaving early so we will be in the shade and avoid any heat issues.


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