One of the favorite areas we patrol at Natural Bridges is White Canyon, featuring Sippapu Bridge. To reach the bridge one must climb down a steep mountain trail that also includes three wooden ladders to assist in navigating the most challenging parts.
One morning, after reaching the bottom of the first ladder, we looked in to the dead trees that line the path and saw three large turkey vultures looking majestically sinister as they surveyed the canyon below. On another occasion there was a lone vulture in the same spot, who posed for us with his wings spread.
About half-way down the trail there is a wide ledge where one can view the canyon, bright green trees seen through the rock hole created by Sipapu Bridge.
At the bottom there is a stream, mostly dry but with a few lovely pools, some of them a couple feet deep, up against the cliff walls. Jonathan loves this place, and he has seen several tiger salamanders, a large, colorful amphibian that dwells alongside the leopard frogs there. The tiger salamander is the only salamander found in the park, as the desert is conducive for only the hardiest species. They are elusive and it takes a lot of patience to see them.
I’m sure we will take many more hikes to Sipapu during the next two months. It is a strange but gorgeous spot that I’m sure we’ll always remember.
Powered by Facebook Comments