We tried to do Battlement Mesa first but it was so muddy and slick that we didn't make it very far into the trail. The clay was just too slippery. That put us on the Coal Creek trail without planning to run it first, and it turned out to be a great day. The scenery and the trail were both amazing.
We were already covered in mud by the time we got to the public service power plant off of I-70. It was raining and wet and it turned out to be one of the rainiest days Grand Junction had seen all year. That made the trail wetter and muddier than it had been in a long time.
We saw four wild horses right off the bat at the trailhead. That was a nice bonus!
It seemed like there was a puddle or water crossing every few feet and we all had fun splashing through them on the trail. The trail was wet but not too slippery -- though it would get pretty slippery soon.
We worked our way up to the northern overlook and the trail started getting really sticky. Our tires were all coated in mud and little rocks and it made everything challenging. It was sticking to everything but we managed to get to the overlook without too much trouble. It was a mess but it was fun.
From the overlook we saw two or three more wild horses over near the trails on the way up to the southern overlook. The trails over there looked steep and we hoped they wouldn't be as slick as the mud on the northern side. It turns out the mud wasn't quite as bad over there, thankfully.
We started working our way down to the canyon floor and we came across the middle obstacle. It was pretty slick and we all slid a little bit on the way down but it was fun. Luckily the sun was trying to come out and it had stopped raining so everything was drying a little bit.
We went up the leftmost trail to the top and looked out to where we had been. Then we followed the trail along the fence to the top of the southern overlook and the sun came out as we looked down on Palisade. What an amazing view!
We came around the corner to the left when coming down the middle trail back down to the canyon floor and found ourselves on the top of Monster. Robert thought about it and he almost did it but then decided it was too wet and risky (no one had a winch and it was a long way down). Next time!
We went down to the canyon floor and back up the third trail. Monster looked even bigger from over on that side. We worked our way over to Gearhart Mine and took more pictures of Palisade.
A storm was over on the other side of Grand Junction and working its way toward us so we decided we'd better try the middle obstacle again before it started getting really bad. We beat the storm and the middle obstacle was challenging but not too difficult.
What a great trail!