If you are an avid hiker or outdoor enthusiast, the elusive Wave has been on your bucket list since you began your journey into the wild.
I had high hopes of winning the lottery during my short stint in Kanab, but had a solid backup planned out that I throughly intended to enjoy. When I beat the 5% odds to snag my once in a lifetime opportunity via the walk up lottery, the butterflies wreaking havoc on my stomach were in full force the night prior.
Of course, I always have a twist that makes things interesting. My schedule on this particular Saturday was extremely tight, as I had a flight to catch back in Las Vegas 4 hours away by 7pm. So inevitably, I backed out the timeline and needed to start my trek before any hint of daylight.
So with my headlamp, the NPS detailed map and lots of layers to combat the brutal 21 degree starting temperature outside, I took my first step onto the trail at 6:50am without another soul in sight. I easily found the first cut off and crested over the first hill just in time to snag a glimpse of twilight starting to erupt over the desert like landscape. I can’t believe no one else got to experience the first light of day from this amazing vantage point.
I easily navigated the trail and thoroughly enjoyed the varied terrain over the 6.4 mile round trip adventure. Wildlife would occasionally peer over the spires and watch my every move. As the sunlight peeled out over each peak, the colors of the valley would radiate differently at each passing glance. It was insanely inspiring.
After passing between two small beachy mounds, you had one long, uphill sand challenge to traverse prior to reaching the coveted prize. I looked behind to see any other form of human life, but still found nothing but the quiet of nature.
And then…… The Wave, in all its glory, is still hidden from the sun’s rays and beaming to be explored. I went crazy snapping pics and videos, even having enough signal to shoot a live video! I certainly didn’t take this solitude for granted, as I knew it couldn’t last for long. But after an hour of jumping around alone, I ventured upward to climb to even more lookouts and peer into numerous different coves. It was so rejuvenating and life changing, even after tripping over a boulder to slice off the top of my finger. (My first aid kit came in very handy).
After 2.5 hours of pure joy, I knew I reluctantly had to start the return journey. Not until I had quickly slid down the big sand hill did I see the first sign of another human (they had gotten lost). I’m still grateful and shocked that I got to enjoy the magnificent Wave to myself!
I took a couple of minor, wrong detours by hugging the cliffs too close to the left but course corrected to ease back out of the valley with a HUGE smile that wouldn’t leave my face the rest of the day.
And the kicker….. I had forgotten that I actually gained an hour traveling over the Utah and Nevada border, so I had plenty of extra time to catch my flight to Hawaii (go figure)!