On to Page and a Visit to White Pocket

Page, AZ

Our move from Congress to Page was about 300 miles, a long drive for us.  So Thursday we were up at dawn (literally at dawn!) and on the road by 6:45.  We had to go south on Rte.60 a few miles to get to Rte 74, then east to I-17.  I-17 is a winding road with some pretty significant elevation gain all the way to Flagstaff, which sits at 7,000 feet.  There we joined Rte 89 north through desert until just south of Page.  At that point the road went up through some pretty nice rock formations.

Approaching Page the road is sometimes on the edge of the mountain . . .

. . . while sometimes it goes through the mountain

A short distance after crossing the Glen Canyon Dam we turned into the Wahweap RV Park, a beautiful park on the south side of Lake Powell.

Lake Powell

We were able to get the same site we had during our 2013 visit, with a great view of the lake.  Dave and Sue (Beluga’s Excellent Adventure) arrived a couple of hours later and took the site right next to us.

We shared a happy hour at our site while enjoying the beautiful view of the sun behind us shining on the rock formations in front of us.

 

The next day we were up again at dawn (can you believe it?).  We have been following the blog Geogypsy for some time.  The blog is written by Gaelyn, a park ranger at the Northern Rim of the Grand Canyon, who is staying in nearby Kanab, UT.  Gaelyn also follows our blog, so when she read we were headed for Lake Powell, she suggested we get together for a hike.  We said that we were interested in visiting an area known as White Pocket and Gaelyn volunteered to lead us there, since it is a bit tricky to find.  She suggested we meet on House Rock Road just north of Rte. 89a at 9:00 Friday morning.  Since it was a drive of seventy-one miles to that point from Page, we knew we had to get an early start.  The long ride went by very quickly as the scenery along the way is spectacular.

The Vermilion Cliffs north of Rte. 89a

We pulled into the parking area on House Rock Road a couple minutes after nine and were greeted by Gaelyn, her friend Bill, and Bill’s beautiful dog Sasha.  After introductions and some conversation we piled back into the vehicles and headed north.  This part of House Rock Road is maintained and is in pretty good shape (discounting the dust).  About ten miles later we turned east on to Pine Tree Road.  That road is also maintained for a few miles but slowly began to narrow until it became two tire track through the sand.  High clearance is needed for the last few miles and we had to use four-wheel drive in two spots due to the deep sand.

 

After fifteen miles on the narrow path we came to the end of the line, the parking area for White Pocket.

The parking area near White Pocket

Gaelyn, Bill, and Pam (Sasha rests in the shade)

After a short hike through the sand we entered the strange, beautiful land of twisting colored sandstone known as White Pocket.  Words can’t adequately describe this spot so we’ll let the photographs do the talking.

The perfect circles in the sand pictured below were made by the wind blowing small, sparse vegetation around and around.

A smart dog always finds a shady spot to rest

White Pillows

Bill worked for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for many years and knows the area very well.  He guided us to an area just north of the parking area where there is evidence of ancient inhabitants.

Some of the visitors were here more recently.

After exploring the White Pocket area, we drove back out to House Rock Road.  But instead of returning the same way we came, we turned north toward Utah.  As we approached the Utah/Arizona state line the road became a bit rough.  Apparently someone in a large vehicle drove the road during some wet conditions, as they left two deep ruts in the road for miles and miles.

Crossing into Utah

After crossing into Utah and stopping in a parking area to say our good-byes to Gaelyn, Bill, and Sasha, we continued north for about ten miles to the junction of Rte. 89.  Turning east on the highway it was a thirty mile drive back to the motorhome.

We really appreciated the efforts of Gaelyn and Bill in leading us on this cool adventure.  They were able to share so much information about this beautiful area and Sasha did a great job in leading the hike.

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23 Responses to On to Page and a Visit to White Pocket

  1. geogypsy2u says:

    So glad we could share this amazing landscape with you. Sasha is looking for her friend with the doggie cookies. Headed to the city Tuesday.

  2. Im excited to be on the same site as you guys next week!
    That sure looked like a bigger version of Valley of Fire. Hmm our little Honda may not be able to make it to White Pockets. Rocks makes you guys get out at dawn!

  3. Debbie L says:

    Simply amazing! There are so many fascinating places to see and hike around! This is a must see….but it looks like jeep territory. Not sure our SRX could do it!

  4. Suzanne says:

    Well? It looks just as gorgeous as I thought it would. Lucky you! I am going back next time with a little more nerve. And a little more “self rescue” gear. And a tent. 😉 That loose sand does make my palms start to sweat though… So glad you got to meet Gaelyn, Bill and Sasha. They are lovely guides indeed!

  5. Gay says:

    A picture is worth a thousand words…absolutely beautiful ! what a real treat to have Gaelyn, Bill and Sasha show you the way. I

  6. Nancy says:

    You are living large! A tour guide, cute dog and breathtaking sights with your hike and ride!
    In Edinboro right now and it’s freezing!!!!

  7. Laurel says:

    Such beautiful rock formations — and how cool to have your own tour guides — a National Park ranger and BLM man, no less!! (And very cute dog.) Thanks for taking us along — looks like it’s one we’ll have to enjoy through your eyes since we would probably never find it.

  8. montanaclarks says:

    Most definitely a cool spot plus Pam got her doggy fix!

  9. Box Canyon Blogger Mark says:

    Don’t think my comment took, so I’ll try again. You are in some nice country. Love the Utah look and feel of that part of Arid-zona 🙂
    Box Canyon

  10. pmbweaver says:

    Beautiful drive…gorgeous site!
    Another private tour. You two are surely blessed to have such awesome friends all over our great country.

    Like you two….any words I can think of doesn’t describe the beauty of that place. WOW…a little taste of heaven for sure. Thanks for all the photos. What a treat!

  11. colibabas says:

    Wow…what a cool area! Kind of reminds me of Valley of Fire.

  12. Jeff says:

    Ah what a beautiful area! I entered The Wave lottery several times without success, but knowing of this little gem would have saved enough for the gas. Antelope Valley is well worth it, sure it’s a tourist trap, but worth it.

  13. Mary says:

    I haven’t been to that area. Looks very pretty! You must go hike Buckskin gulch. It’s the longest slot canyon in the world, I think. It’s amazing.

  14. What a great day with great guides in such a scenic location! Looks like we need a bigger motorhome so we can pull a Jeep.
    Hope you get to do the Wave while you’re there.

  15. Ingrid says:

    Amazing land that I’m sure photos don’t do it justice. It’s always nice having informed tour guides along 🙂

  16. girlonahike says:

    Awesome, you guys are back in Page! White Pocket is on my hiking to-do list. Thank you for posting this info! On a side note, have you guys thought about incorporating Social Icons to your blog to others can share your posts? They are pretty easy to add to word press, you just need a plug in. Just a thought 🙂
    Alicia @ http://www.girlonahike.com

  17. Sherry says:

    Up at dawn or before is no problem for me but having everything ready to pack up and pull out by 6:15 is an impossibility. I’m amazed. Need to get some lessons. Your pictures are wonderful of this beautiful place. The swirls in the rocks and the petroglyphs are fantastic. You definitely have great folks with tons of knowledge to hike with. Lucky you! Great pictures of all of you too. Wish I could have been there in person but am glad I got to see it all through your eyes.

  18. Kim Nowell says:

    The pictures definetly did some talking. Just beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  19. Jodee Gravel says:

    Love the melting ice cream rocks and the cool cone. Great to see pics of Gaelyn, Bill and Sasha. Know you all had a great time enjoying that beautiful place. Definitely a good week for exploring red rock spots 🙂 The compass plants leaving the perfect circles are great!

  20. Rebecca Salazar says:

    So glad you made it to White Pocket! Indeed a unique spot on planet earth !!

  21. Awesome! Not sure we’d want to take our truck so far on those roads so I am extra glad I get to see this through your lens! How fortunate to have guides who know the area so well!

  22. LuAnn says:

    How cool to have your own personal tour guides. Such fascinating rock formations.

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