DV report updates in progress

Being that our Death Valley hiking will not resume until January (which might be a good thing in view of the recent flash flooding and widespread road damage in the park), I am working to try to get more of the trip reports converted over to the newer updated format.  Visitors to the site really like the newer format reports because all of the pictures do not load at once, the grey paragraph color is easier to read on the dark background than the previous white, and there is much more helpful information contained within the reports.  Currently, 97 of 189 DV hiking reports use the updated format.  And 23 of 44 non-DV hiking reports use the updated format.  Check the list below to see what reports have been recently updated and which ones are coming next.

Recently updated reports — Titus Canyon (updated 10/30), Willow Creek Canyon, Sidewinder Canyon (introduction only), and Mormon Point Canyon (10/31), Corridor Canyon (11/2), Lower Corridor Canyon (11/5), Upper Corridor Canyon and Wind Caves Canyon (11/7), Lower Bighorn Gorge and Upper Bighorn Gorge (11/8), Contact Canyon (11/9), Star Wars in Death Valley (11/12), Cottonwood Canyon (11/15), Dead Horse Canyon (11/17), Upper Marble Canyon (11/18), Lower Marble Canyon (11/19), Cottonball Marsh (11/20), Death Valley’s Natural Bridges special report (11/21), Mount Perry (11/27), Actual Lowest Point (11/28), Lower Slab Canyon + map (11/29 report #72), Middle Slab Canyon + map and new photos of Mesquite Flat Niter Beds (12/1), Death Valley Buttes +17 additional photos added (12/8), Grey Wall Canyon +17 additional photos added (12/16), and Titanothere Canyon +13 additional photos added (12/19).

Maunga Pu, Aitutaki (Cook Islands) report released

Tonight I am releasing my second and final hiking report from the Cook Islands.  I did do two additional major hikes, however both turned out badly due to trail and weather issues.  Thus, I will hold those back at this time.  This second report is from the island of Aitutaki and features some incredibly beautiful scenery.  I hope you get a chance to check it out and enjoy the report.  The report can be accessed on the Introduction Page under the South Pacific section.  Look for the report on Maunga Pu or simply click here to view it.

For those of you curious about my upcoming Death Valley plans, I have some excellent hikes in the planning stages for January.  All of the hikes which I will be carrying out have no previous reports posted anywhere online.  However, I will not be revealing the destinations until after I carry out the hikes due to problems in the past with people taking my ideas and claiming them as their own.  I’m really looking forward to hiking in Death Valley again being that I haven’t been there since this past May.

Cross-Island Track (Cook Islands) report released

Today I am releasing my first of two hiking reports done for the Cook Islands.  The first report covers the Cross-Island Track on Rarotonga.  This is the most popular and well-established hike on the Cook Islands.  Check out the report to learn about some of the plants, trees, wildlife, and beautiful scenery which can be found on Rarotonga.  To read the new report for the Cross-Island Track, visit the Introduction Page on the site or click here.  I hope you enjoy it.  There are more reports to come and for those of you anxious to receive some new Death Valley hiking reports, I am happy to tell you that our Death Valley hiking will resume in January with covering some undocumented canyons.

Cook Islands trip completed

We just returned from spending two weeks in the Cook Islands.  It was our first trip to the South Pacific and we ended up choosing an outstanding destination.  We spent one week on Rarotonga and one week on Aitutaki.  The local people were very friendly, the mountains and beaches of Rarotonga were spectacular, and the colorful fish and lagoon of Aitutaki were stunning to behold in person.  I carried out four hikes while on this trip and will write up detailed trip reports on at least two of them.  At the end of the reports, I will try to include a few of my favorite non-hiking pictures from our time in the Cook Islands.  Death Valley hiking will resume in the near future in January of 2016, but until then I will work on my Cook Islands hiking reports.  For now, here are a few teaser images of a couple of hikes that we carried out.  The first two pictures were taken on Rarotonga during the Cross-Island Track and the last two pictures were taken near the summit of Maunga Pu on Aitutaki (which is Aitutaki’s highest point).

Gary heading up toward The Needle on Rarotonga's Cross-Island Track

Gary heading up toward The Needle on Rarotonga’s Cross-Island Track

Gary at the base of The Needle with the mountains of Rarotonga behind him

Gary at the base of The Needle with the mountains of Rarotonga behind him

Steve standing near the summit of Maunga Pu on Aitutaki with the lagoon in the background

Steve standing near the summit of Maunga Pu on Aitutaki with the lagoon in the background

Steve standing just past Piraki Lookout with Maunga Pu in the background

Steve standing just past Piraki Lookout with Maunga Pu in the background