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04-04-2012, 10:05 AM #1
Zion-Help needed for trip planning!!!
I have a group of six people that are going on a trip from May 17th - 20th. I have a permit for the Subway on May 18th, but the other trips we wanted such as Kolob and the Narrows had all of the campsites taken. I know we can do the Narrows from the end for a day hike. Any suggestions for the Saturday and Sunday time?
I especially liked previous trips such as Coyote Gulch and Escalante BMT/Death Hollow. The only place with available campsites in Zion back country are Wildcat Canyon and West Rim. What little I have seen on these doesn't have me excited to try them. We are looking for non technical backpacking hikes. They can be either full day trips or one overnighter.
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04-05-2012, 07:19 AM #2
- Join Date
- Apr 2011
- Boulder Canyon, CO
You're also allowed to do the entire Narrows (top-down) as a day hike (with a permit), but it is QUITE a trek for one day. I'm also pretty sure there are a few campsites that are not reservable in the Narrows, and are set aside for walk-ins. If you do this, you'll want to leave very early. We camped by the Visitor's Center the night before, got up before sunrise, and still didn't end up getting to our campsite in the Narrows until after dark (hooray headlamps). The Narrows is not a technical backpack, but is definitely NOT easy. We went last October when the water was flowing pretty substantially, which obviously made it much more difficult. It's doable, and a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but you'll be aching by the end, and will probably have blisters on your feet for a while. :) If you decide to do the day hike from the bottom, I guess I'd suggest getting in there as early as possible so that you can get upstream away from the day crowds as they start rolling in. It is defitely something you have to see. The whole experience still feels like it was a dream to me.
04-06-2012, 04:12 AM #3
04-09-2012, 12:16 PM #4
- Join Date
- Dec 2009
You have, or have not been to the Zion area previously? And when you say Subway, are you speaking top down (semi-technical) or bottom up (walk-slog)? Left Fork/Subway and Orderville Cyn are the two premier semi-techinical routes in the park. At least 60 ft of rope for Left Fork and 40-50 for Orderville (use as handlines). If going down Orderville you will exit into and have a full hour down the Narrows before the walkway. (these are day trips, not overnite) And if it's anything but very warm temps, I'd have wetsuits for top down Subway (maybe) and the bottom watery section of Orderville - both are beautiful. Generally easy to get Orderville permits.
For Orderville, you can drive to the E side and then Drive N on N Fork Rd to the route trailhead. Or, get a shuttle via Zion Adventure Co. or Zion Rock or....it will cost a penny but makes for a much better day.
If you want an overnite backpack, you can head to the far NE Kolob section of the park and try for a route there. Or, the West Rim Trail, if you've not done it, is quite a nice walk - depending on your route. Upper Coalpits Wash, another possible overnite, or on the E side of the park, in a remote area, dry camping.
Zion has premier rock climbing and technical canyons. A few real nice semi technical canyons. Many ridges/mountains that can be scrambled and climbed, many on route trails and a multitude of off route trails. Overnite backpacking (other than the upper narrows) can be very nice, but it's not a targeted activity generally, (for many of us)considering other options. If your group is fit, they will likely take to top down Subway and top down Orderville; another day could be angels landing and a fourth day East Rim walk, or something on the E side, like up Many Pools a way and then over into Petroglyph Cyn (don't know it's name). If you want to touch some glee, lighten your packs, have lite dry bags for the water canyons and see and experience a variety of arenas in wonderful zion.
Decades ago, I backpacked in Zion but then quit that activity. Shifted to semi technical and day hiking for a long time and then to technical canyoneering where we do some overnite trips. I still backpack, mountains and some desert areas, except that Zion has become a corridor where it's secrets and beauty are most often encountered on day trips; you can see and experience a grand variety of what the park offers - something beyond what you get on a backpack, at least in that park. (there are some exceptions, like some remote areas, where I would backpack in the park) Get a map, look in a guide book and/or get a hold of Tom Jones Zion Canyons book. Full write ups for Left Fork/Subway and Orderville appear there.
04-09-2012, 01:45 PM #5
I think if you can do Kolob and Subway, then doing the Narrows in one day is an easy task - depending on the water level.
04-11-2012, 10:21 AM #6
04-11-2012, 07:23 PM #7
Ice thanks for the info. I am looking into the permits now.
04-16-2012, 09:36 PM #8
Orderville on Saturday it is!!!
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