Antelope Creek and higher peaks of the Pioneer Mountains, as seen from the ridge near our Thanksgiving picnic site.
 
We started our trip with two vehicles, but only The Predator had the muscle to get to this spot. After leaving Steve’s truck in Chokecherry Canyon, Steve and Lynna rode in the back of The Predator, a good vantage point for spotting mule deer, and for planning a hike to view rock formations. Most of the side roads in the area are now open only to foot and horse traffic.
 
Another view of the natural rock shelter, complete with a window.

The image on the right shows Steve percussion-flaking an arrowhead from a piece of obsidian. Steve roughed out a bifacial arrowhead. A finished arrowhead would have required refinement by pressure-flaking, using an antler. Obsidian flakes and nodules were abundant on the ridge. I gathered these and wiped the dirt off of them to take a photo.



Lichen grows on south-facing rocks in an area where mostly flat, plate-like stones covered the hillside. (Challis Volcanics). See image on the right of Steve, Leland and Matt walking across the field of what looked like ideal paving stones. You can’t drive to this building/paving material, though. This area is open to foot and horse traffic.



Above: Three guys stand around in the middle of nowhere and look things over.

To prove that we made it back to the semi-civilized confines of Steve’s house, I present images of two geeks, Eben Howard (Steve’s son), and Matt. For your edification, there’s also a close-up of the decorated cover of Eben’s computer.





 
Modern man uses his iPhone to take a photo of primitive man creating an obsidian weapon.



Using the tailgate for a table, Steve prepares smoked turkey, garlic bread, cranberry sauce, potato salad, and the obligatory jello salad (this is the Jello Corridor, after all). Leland is handing over the wine. Despite the evidence of the photo on the left, Matt did not drink all the wine.


These guys are looking all too comfortable in the rock shelter. Nevertheless, we did get them off the mountain and back to civilization. At the end of the day, when the shadows on the snow were deep blue, and the setting sun lit the tops of our tire tracks with bright sparkles, we made our way back to Steve’s truck. There were still a few iffy moments as we negotiated the canted road (canted toward the ravine!), but luckily we didn’t have to ride in the back of The Predator after the sun went down. At sundown, the temperature dropped like a rock.

In the image below, Steve is deciding where he wants to go next time. He spotted what looks like a prospect pit in the foothills across the valley from us.