Light in Saqánma
We had perfect spring weather for backpacking in the bottom of Saqánma (Hells Canyon) a couple weeks ago: moody and dramatic but never seriously stormy. The light shows began the moment we first arrived at the river the evening before our hike. I parked, grabbed tripod and camera and headed straight for a view, hoping nothing would rattle at me in the tall grass. Nothing did, and the reflected sunset on the Snake was a wonderful welcome.
Kirkwood Ranch is a pretty decadent backpacking destination, with picnic tables, a flush toilet and a homestead converted to museum by the Forest Service. It won’t be mistaken for deep wilderness, but it’s a stunning place, and the dramatic light continued to show off.
The river trail here only seldom approaches the river, but that’s fine by me. The views of the spring green canyon crags and river bends from several hundred feet up were consistently outstanding. I made several breathless morning and evening trips up the steep trail above Kirkwood to enjoy the light and weather.
Saqánma is simply a stunning place, especially while it’s green and cool. I’m hoping to manage another visit soon to somewhere much higher up the canyon walls.