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Thread: iron wash

  1. #1

    iron wash

    first off, if anyone ever finds my nalgene please please PLEASE let me know. i want it back. pathetically enough it has emotional value.

    what an incredible waterpark ! wow.

    made the mistake of combining this w/ twin knolls, which at best is a looooong day +. also was ooh-ing and ahhh-ing a lot and unpacking/repacking the camera. also also, wet stuff in the pack really made the pack unbearably heavy, which had my all eventualities gear, and slowed me WAY down. eventually dropped it (just before making a wrong turn to add 7 more miles to the day/night) and next day made a pack retrieval hiking day.

    best to start at the ng/ti iron divide th. camping options sorta suck right at the th. a mile or so back there are very nice sites above iron wash spurs. from the th take the blue fork until you hit a junction in 1 hour where it becomes orange one way, red another. go red (left). in 10 minutes you hit an unmarked jct., continue forward following the "trail" sign (the unmarked trail right is red/orange and will be your return path). 10 more minutes drops you into iron wash. total time for me was 1.5 hours to here from the th.

    go down iron wash and enjoy hours of pothole after pothole after pothole... after pothole. all were filled w/ water for me, some to capacity, some a couple feet + below capacity, none were difficult to escape. it is possible it could change though, huh ? none were crystal clear, but no funky debris soup at all. many had a green slime on top which bubbled as moved thru, many had a black sheen that took on rainbow hues when disturbed. they all had an odor, but it was truly not bad and was very slight. time down iron wash was ~6 hours +/-

    once donbe and at the lone cottonwood tree, get back above iron wash, either up the slight slope, or down canyon some 100' to a side wash and up it. at any rate keep hugging close to the big mesa on you left. don't drop down to low or you'll have lots of little drainages to cross.

    once you round the corner of the mesa in ~40 minutes, bear due west, staying on top of the ridge w/ iron wash to your right, a large wash on your left, and another big mesa directly before you. in ~10+ minutes you will hit single track trail which will contour around the mesa you were bearing towards, but will get to your left. rocks will be painted red or orange. it is a little faint here or there, but only for a few feet so just pay attention and you won't get lost. follow this single track for ~25 minutes until you round the mesa and get a look at the twin knolls. another 30 minutes and you reach the unmarked jct. you passed on the way in. go left, or red, and in 10 minutes at the next jct. go right, or blue, and back to the car in ~1 hour. time for me was 3 hours from lone cottonwood back to th.

    i had 3 raps to ~50'(+ ?) max. r1 is actually quite a ways in. by this time i knew i was already gonna be very late back to camp so did not take time to replace webbing. inspected it for wear, made sure it was still safe, and left it at that. r1 was from a cam in a crack. found a very nice hook placement, then looked up and saw it 10' higher above. r2 was a baseball size stone wedged nicely into a crack. r3 a piton. r2 & 3 maybe i got reversed. i loved the anchors. short slings from high anchors that you weight before dropping over (i hate those flying dismounts) w/ easy pulls and little rock friction. i was impressed and want to better my anchor placements as needed in the future.

    pics were day of descent and next day for pack retrieval. one hour from the exit on my descent it began to thunder and lightning and rain. this was disconcerting. it was a steady, light rain. the sight of the reef stretched out before me once i got above it all, w/ both earthbound and cloud on cloud lightning action was breathtaking. and thunder rolling all around w/ stiff gusts periodically. holy crap i love the elements ! especially when they rage a little like this. it was incredible to say the least.


    hmm.. thats neat




    now in earnest




    pothole




    after pothole...




    after pothole...




    for hours...




    hike out looking back at the reef and the 1st mesa (the low tan hill on the left) you keep to your left after exiting iron wash



    more exit. lone man butte way out there on the upper right




    goodnight moon...

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  3. #2
    Nice post goofball. I did Iron Wash several years ago in the spring. I thought we had it at around 1/2 full, and had some pretty burly pothole escapes, especially down lower in the canyon. One was maybe 5.8 or so climbing. Fun.

    It is a long day, especially when the water is a bit lower. I think we were 12 or 13 hours car-to-car. From your description, we may have entered in a different place.

    That was the first place I was heavily exposed to knot chock anchors. Who ever had done the canyon before us was quite talented with them. Some of those anchors require a bit of creativity. A cam? Who canyoneers with cams to leave behind?

    Sounds like a fun trip. Thanks for sharing some photos.

  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by deserthiker
    It is a long day, especially when the water is a bit lower. I think we were 12 or 13 hours car-to-car. From your description, we may have entered in a different place.
    i had wanted to do this for a couple years but always got "its too far too walk" thte approach and exit. sissies. kelseys beta on entry/exit was a little light too, so i thought i would share some (hopefully) clearer info on that.

    Quote Originally Posted by deserthiker
    That was the first place I was heavily exposed to knot chock anchors. Who ever had done the canyon before us was quite talented with them. Some of those anchors require a bit of creativity. A cam? Who canyoneers with cams to leave behind?
    i was impressed w/ the anchors. well thought out. something for me to aspire too.

    Quote Originally Posted by deserthiker
    Sounds like a fun trip. Thanks for sharing some photos.
    when it's fun i always like to share !
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  5. #4
    Marquesa De Canyonette
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    Re: iron wash

    Quote Originally Posted by goofball

    pics were day of descent and next day for pack retrieval. one hour from the exit on my descent it began to thunder and lightning and rain. this was disconcerting. it was a steady, light rain. the sight of the reef stretched out before me once i got above it all, w/ both earthbound and cloud on cloud lightning action was breathtaking. and thunder rolling all around w/ stiff gusts periodically. holy crap i love the elements ! especially when they rage a little like this. it was incredible to say the least.
    COOL pics Jason! I LOVE the last one - moon pic. It looks like a painting!
    Where are the cloud on cloud/lightning action pics???? I WANNA SEE EM! : ) ~ Must have been absolutely beautiful!!!

    ~Randi


    PS - Do have that children's story book "Goodnight Moon?" I do! : ) ~

    goodnight moon...

    If the shoe fits ~ pretend it doesn’t and walk barefoot!

  6. #5

    Re: iron wash

    Quote Originally Posted by Randi
    COOL pics Jason! I LOVE the last one - moon pic. It looks like a painting!
    Where are the cloud on cloud/lightning action pics???? I WANNA SEE EM! : ) ~ Must have been absolutely beautiful!!!

    ~Randi


    PS - Do have that children's story book "Goodnight Moon?" I do! : ) ~
    yeah, jr. used to love that book ! now he just hits me when i try to read it to him.

    sorry, no pics of the storm. i was in awe, and prettty tired, so i just sat a minute or 2 and watched, then watched from on the move. some things i just like to experience, trying to capture the moment for posterity makes it more like work. although what guy in his right mind wouldn't want to capture on film some cloud on cloud action ? i am ashamed of myself...
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