Thursday, November 03, 2005

Alamosa, CO - A Unique Waterfall

Zapata Falls is within the Great Sand Dunes Nat'l Park. GSD actually just became a Nat'l Park this year. When they became an N.P. they practically tripled their size in acres. Now, they aren't just Sand Dunes, but encompass part of the desert valley, foothills and mountains. This is the only hike we did outside of the dunes. It was only a half-mile hike in from the trailhead, which was up a 3 1/2 mile washboard dirt road. It was a very unique waterfall because it was hidden inside a a small box canyon. When you reach the creek, you need to rock hop the rest of the way to reach the falls (or wade through the freezing cold water). They have warnings posted for 3 seasons. Spring and Summer bring dangerous currents and deep water in the creek, while Winter brings ice. The temperature dropped dramatically once we entered the small slot canyon and the spray from the waterfall was icy. Icicles hung on the wall close to the downpour.

Looking straight up through the ceiling of the canyon, it reminded us of the slot canyons we've been in.

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