The first adventure outing of mine during my solo stay in Cortez, Colorado was to Sheiks Canyon out in Cedar Mesa. Truthfully, this hike was a backup plan – decided upon at the very last moment. My original plans were to join a guided hike in the Needles District of Canyonlands, but a bad winter storm rolled through. I was staying in Monticello, and decided to hunker down the night before the hike in a warm hotel. When I woke up before dawn to head north on U.S. Highway 191, I found a line of semi trucks parked on slick and iced over roads. They were so icy that I almost spun out on control going only twenty or so miles per hour.

Remnants of green foliage at the bottom of the canyon
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