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Thread: sHeNaNiGaNs

  1. #1

    sHeNaNiGaNs

    Met up with Marc, Rob, Chris and Frank (Marc's dad) to take advantage of the great weather over the weekend and tackle the infamous Shenanigans (aka Middle Fork of Butler Canyon's West Fork). There is a very good reason why Kelsey ranks Shenanigans at #11 on his top 40 list. This canyon is awesome, and should be considered a classic on all levels. I already want to do it again.

    Unfortunately for some, this canyon is a little discriminating. If you are a hefty guy (or gal) there are certain sections of this canyon that are just plain impassable. I would put the weight cutoff at 190 pounds -- any heavier than that, and you are probably not gonna make it through. This canyon is tight, TIGHT, TIGHT!!! One of the appeals to this canyon is the seemingly endless stretches of gorgeous narrows. The narrows are sculpted, and in certain sections twisty and curvy. It is very difficult to get a good picture because most of the narrows are pretty dark as well.

    Shenanigans is quite a physically demanding canyon. There are rarely stretches where you're walking upright with shoulders squared. It seemed like we were always either walking sideways, or hunched over, or bracing our body weight on both arms, and sometimes a combo of the above. For this reason, elbow pads, and knee pads are a valued item, as well as clothing that can withstand the sandy punishment.

    In the final section of narrows, there is a 20 - 25 foot drop that may be bypassed by crawling on a ledge to the right (aka the "Grim Crawl of Death"). At the end of the crawl, there is a series of chokestones wedged between the walls that offers a place to downclimb. We sequenced guys down on a human anchor here, and I did the grim crawl, since there is no other anchor here from which to rappel, nor is there anything to build an anchor with. The downclimb is a little dicey as the ledges are sandy, and the exposure is high. A spot from the bottom is preferable, or possibly wrapping some webbing around one of the boulders, and rapping down from there.

    Here's a few pics...
    Attached Images Attached Images               

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  3. #2
    Dang..... Marc looks just like his dad.... I think I shall dud ye "Cookie Cutter"

    Thanks for the TR and pics.


  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Iceaxe
    Dang..... Marc looks just like his dad.... I think I shall dud ye "Cookie Cutter"
    you think there's a resemblence...? i'm not sure i see it


  5. #4
    Look at the bright side.... at least ya know what you'll look like in 20 years.

  6. #5
    Very nice TR and photos.... apparently I have 14 lbs. to go to make it through..... Stinkin' diets....
    Life is Good

  7. #6
    i wear a size 40 coat and can fit between (2) 2x4's spaced 9" apart, and there were sections in there that i had to go high.

    it's very tight.... uncomfortably so

  8. #7

  9. #8
    you could be a little heavier if you are taller. seemed to me where marc and his dads chest was getting caught my stomach was and i could squeeze thru and it was a hair wider at my chest area.

    i will say for sure if i eve did this canyon again. nylon NYLON! low coefficient of friction is your friend. nylon jump suit will help you squeeze thru some rought parts.

    i would take a picture of my jeans to see how totally destroyed they are but i left my camera in marcs car. :(

    -rob

  10. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Card
    apparently I have 14 lbs. to go to make it through..... Stinkin' diets....
    I only have 6 lbs to go

    The part that always scares me is I have a 46" chest

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Iceaxe
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Card
    apparently I have 14 lbs. to go to make it through..... Stinkin' diets....
    I only have 6 lbs to go

    The part that always scares me is I have a 46" chest
    Next time measure your chest when its warm and your cold indicators aren't indicatin'
    Life is Good

  12. #11
    that looks awesome. Thanks for the TR and pics
    The man thong is wrong.

  13. #12
    The existence of slots like Shenanigans is probably the best weight loss motivator I know of. Thanks for the TR-can never see too many shots of that place.

  14. #13

    Re: TR - sHeNaNiGaNs

    Quote Originally Posted by rockgremlin
    Unfortunately for some, this canyon is a little discriminating. If you are a hefty guy (or gal) there are certain sections of this canyon that are just plain impassable. I would put the weight cutoff at 190 pounds -- any heavier than that, and you are probably not gonna make it through. This canyon is tight, TIGHT, TIGHT!!!
    Great TR, and pics! Shenanigans is one of my favorites. Probably my favorite outside of a couple in Zion and the Escalante. One thing that I wanted to point out, is that bigger people can do the slot, though it requires a bit of high stemming in the very lower end. About the first 90% anyone can fit thru. After the second opening where you can exit begins the final slot. Everyone should be able to fit thru the first two thirds of this. Then, where it gets really tight, if you are too big, you can back up a bit and stem up about 30-40ft. After this, stay stemming horizontally for maybe 100 yards, after which you can descend back to the bottom. From here it's about another 100 yards to the rap and the end of the slot. Although a bit exposed, it's not too difficult, the hardest part is perhaps the initial upclimb. Although you miss a bit of the slot this way, bigger people can still see almost the whole thing.
    nat smale

  15. #14
    Thanks Nat

    That's the info I've been waiting to hear.

    Ice 6'1, 195# of pure beefcake

  16. #15
    Agreed, Thanks Nat...

    So when we going?
    Life is Good

  17. #16
    Content Provider Emeritus ratagonia's Avatar
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    Re: TR - sHeNaNiGaNs

    Quote Originally Posted by nat
    Great TR, and pics! Shenanigans is one of my favorites. Probably my favorite outside of a couple in Zion and the Escalante. One thing that I wanted to point out, is that bigger people can do the slot, though it requires a bit of high stemming in the very lower end. About the first 90% anyone can fit thru. After the second opening where you can exit begins the final slot. Everyone should be able to fit thru the first two thirds of this. Then, where it gets really tight, if you are too big, you can back up a bit and stem up about 30-40ft. After this, stay stemming horizontally for maybe 100 yards, after which you can descend back to the bottom. From here it's about another 100 yards to the rap and the end of the slot. Although a bit exposed, it's not too difficult, the hardest part is perhaps the initial upclimb. Although you miss a bit of the slot this way, bigger people can still see almost the whole thing.
    Just to be clear, the start of the final section ("Senior Year") can be recognized because the third section ("Junior Year"), which is suitable for large people, includes a LONG corridor slanted to the right.

    Nat - the upclimb - I was under the impression that the upclimb is made, after the grim crawl of death, where the canyon goes steeply down an elevator section, the large canyoneer stays out and climbs across at the same level, to end up 40' up. Is this where you are thinking?

    Tom

  18. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by marc olivares
    i wear a size 40 coat and can fit between (2) 2x4's spaced 9" apart, and there were sections in there that i had to go high.

    it's very tight.... uncomfortably so
    OK, so last night I went down to my furnace room and measured the distance between a few verticle studs of an unframed wall. One space is 9" exactly and another is 8". I could slither between the 9" studs without much trouble but can't even begin to go through 8". So how am I doing from those who have done this canyon before???? Can I make it low or am I going to be going high?
    Life is Good

  19. #18
    If you can fit through a 9" gap, you could probably squirt through Shenanigans, though you might have to either slither down low, or go high here or there.

    Wear a nylon jacket - the nylon makes you slide right through there, and holds up well to the sandstone walls. The nylon jacket I wore through there is hardly scuffed anywhere.

  20. #19

    Re: TR - sHeNaNiGaNs

    Quote Originally Posted by ratagonia

    Just to be clear, the start of the final section ("Senior Year") can be recognized because the third section ("Junior Year"), which is suitable for large people, includes a LONG corridor slanted to the right.

    Nat - the upclimb - I was under the impression that the upclimb is made, after the grim crawl of death, where the canyon goes steeply down an elevator section, the large canyoneer stays out and climbs across at the same level, to end up 40' up. Is this where you are thinking?

    Tom
    Yes, Tom, the upclimb is definitely after the grim crawl (not really so grim). But no, you don't stay at the same level as the ledge of the grim crawl. The upclimb is quite a bit later. Descend the elevator. You then stay at the bottom for a ways through a twisty section of slot, with a couple of downclimbs. Finally, just before it really tightens up there is a slightly wider section where the sunlight comes thru, and the walls slant to the left. It's here that you climb up. A bit awkward because of the slanting walls.
    nat smale

  21. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Card
    OK, so last night I went down to my furnace room and measured the distance between a few verticle studs of an unframed wall. One space is 9" exactly and another is 8". I could slither between the 9" studs without much trouble but can't even begin to go through 8". So how am I doing from those who have done this canyon before???? Can I make it low or am I going to be going high?
    I suspect that you would probably make it thru at the bottom, though it will be exciting. I fit thru Shenannigans quite easily, but my chest is about 7.5". I think that 9" will probably work, though you should be prepared to go high just in case. In a couple of the tightest spots, it can make a difference if you squat and lower your upper body a bit. At one point in the tight section, there is a 2 or 3 ft drop in the floor of the canyon (at least the times I've been there). I seem to remember that if you make it to (or just past?) this spot, then you've made it past the narrowest part.
    nat smale

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