Photo feature by Kira Córdova

For the past three years, student instructors at Wilderness Pursuits (WP) have run an annual climbing trip to Unaweep Canyon, near Grand Junction. 

Unaweep is a unique locale in that it has two outlets (there are two creeks that flow in opposite directions out of the canyon) — and because geologists can’t explain whether a glacier or a river carved it. 

Either way, the spectacular views and climbing and proximity to Gunnison make it a superb weekend getaway. 

Check out these highlights from this year’s late September WP Unaweep trip. 

Participant Brennan Wahl prepares to hike down into the first crag the group visited, an abandoned quarry that’s now bolted for climbers. 
Intern instructor Ryan Welsh finishes setting up a climb in the quarry.
Wahl climbs for the first time! 
Wahl contemplates the beginning of a route. 

Climbing barefoot adds difficulty

Lead instructor Dawson Struempler drinks maté while Largent continues the hammock mission. 

Mission accomplished! 

Struempler concentrates. 

Struempler finishes a route
Wahl watches the sunset

Wahl watches the sunset. 

Day 2: Largent loads up!
Wahl looks at Mother’s Buttress, a crag further down the canyon and the group’s ultimate destination. 
Struempler contemplates his options. 
Largent belays. 
A successful trip! 

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