Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: First trip to Zion for canyoneering

  1. #1

    First trip to Zion for canyoneering

    Hello,
    My wife and I are planning our first trip to Zion for canyoneering. We've been there before a few times for hiking, but this will be our first time there on ropes. We've been canyoneering once before and are practicing our rappelling/rope retrieval skills on the bluffs here in WI as much as we can (there aren't too many canyons in WI ). We're looking for a technical canyoneering trip.

    Based on the post 10 Canyons for Noobies, Tom's Zion: Canyoneering book/website, and the others posts/websites I've read, I think I've put together a good itinerary for a trip.

    Our plan is to start with the Keyhole on day one. This seems to make the most sense, as it's relatively short and seems to be a good intro to canyoneering in Zion. Day two, our plan is to tackle Das Boot/Subway. This route seems like a good next step after Keyhole.

    Does this sound like an an appropriate first Zion canyoneering trip? We're planning to request a permit for a weekend in October. We have the required gear (helmets, ropes, wetsuits, etc) and we know what we're getting ourselves into. I'm interested to hear what people think about this plan.

  2. # ADS
    Circuit advertisement
    Join Date
    Always
    Location
    Advertising world
    Posts
    Many
     

  3. #2
    Here is a trip report of our first trip to zion:

    http://www.bogley.com/forum/showthre...ION-for-7-days!!

    I've never gone through the das boot variationon of the subway, so I can't comment there. However, we did go through keyhole and its close neighbor Pine Creek. We will be in Zion in July and are combining Keyhole with Pine Creek. Not sure what your stamina level is or if you are also hoping to do some non technical hiking aside from the more technical canyons, but due to their close proximity and the short time it takes to make it through keyhole, combining the two would make for a good day.
    better off outdoors

  4. #3
    Content Provider Emeritus ratagonia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Quiet and charming: Mount Carmel
    Posts
    7,151
    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy1701 View Post
    Hello,
    My wife and I are planning our first trip to Zion for canyoneering. We've been there before a few times for hiking, but this will be our first time there on ropes. We've been canyoneering once before and are practicing our rappelling/rope retrieval skills on the bluffs here in WI as much as we can (there aren't too many canyons in WI ). We're looking for a technical canyoneering trip.

    Based on the post 10 Canyons for Noobies, Tom's Zion: Canyoneering book/website, and the others posts/websites I've read, I think I've put together a good itinerary for a trip.

    Our plan is to start with the Keyhole on day one. This seems to make the most sense, as it's relatively short and seems to be a good intro to canyoneering in Zion. Day two, our plan is to tackle Das Boot/Subway. This route seems like a good next step after Keyhole.

    Does this sound like an an appropriate first Zion canyoneering trip? We're planning to request a permit for a weekend in October. We have the required gear (helmets, ropes, wetsuits, etc) and we know what we're getting ourselves into. I'm interested to hear what people think about this plan.
    Even for beginners, Keyhole only takes an hour or two. So add Pine Creek to that day, then ya got something!

    Just two days? Sad...

    Tom

  5. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy1701 View Post
    Our plan is to start with the Keyhole on day one. This seems to make the most sense, as it's relatively short and seems to be a good intro to canyoneering in Zion. Day two, our plan is to tackle Das Boot/Subway. This route seems like a good next step after Keyhole.
    Keyhole is a good way to start. It's a really nice little canyon. Pretty easy.

    Das Boot/Subway is kind of a big step up from Keyhole. The technical part isn't that difficult, the cold water is managable if properly prepared. Running out of daylight will be your biggest problem.

    We did the Boot/Subway in 10 hours a few days ago (top car to bottom car). Remember to add 30 minutes for hitchiking or shuttle. We took an hour for lunch and had few problems with navigation. I've done The Subway several times before and that experience saved us a bunch of time (dunno an hour maybe?).

    And, obviously the days in October are shorter... So I'd bet good money on 2 Wisconsinites + almost no experience + short day = 12 hours of hiking with a pitch black finish.

    So... I would do one of the following:

    A. Get together with some people that have done Das Boot and go with them
    B. Do The Subway alone (it is awesome, you won't feel cheated)
    C. Choose another adventure.

    Also, Pine Creek and Echo are good "training" for Das Boot IMHO. They are really awesome.

    Bob
    Last edited by Slot Machine; 06-07-2012 at 01:12 PM. Reason: turrible grammar
    THE MOST TALKED ABOUT CANYONEERING TRIP OF 2017 - WEST CANYON VIA HELICOPTER.
    TRIP REPORTS: TIGER | BOBCAT | OCELOT | LYNX | SABERTOOTH | CHEETAH | PORCUPINE | LEOPARD

    DON'T BE A STRANGER, LEAVE A COMMENT AND/OR SUBSCRIBE.
    WWW.AMAZINGSLOTS.BLOGSPOT.COM



  6. #5
    Subway permits can be hard to obtain, particularly if you have a specific date you need to do the route on.... if you can't get a Subway permit Orderville Gulch is a great substitute that will fit your current skill set nicely.

    When dealing with Zion permits its a good idea to have a back-up plan for your back-up plan until you have a permit in hand.

  7. #6
    For a backup plan, Misery or Birch can be done without permit, but on Birch, you would have to proceed up Orderville & back to the top. Yankee Doodle/Boltergeist make a nice day out closer to St. George & don't require permit. Misery would be a little long for that time of year - could be finishing in the dark on that one too?? Agree with Slot Machine that Das Boot/Subway combo would probably land you in the darkness but Subway alone is okay, however Subway doesn't require that much rope work if that's what you're looking for. Orderville alone is a good, full day, but not all that technical either compared to Pine Creek. Like Tom says, many do Keyhole/Pine Creek the same day. Great introduction. Birch has a lot of nice rappels & since its bolted, you can move through fairly fast. Makes an easy day.
    "Beaten paths are for beaten men."

  8. #7
    Thanks for the responses everyone. Very good advice all around. I'll definitely add Pine Creek to the Keyhole day. For day two,

    C. Choose another adventure.
    12 hours is a very reasonable estimate and the amount of day light will be a rate limiter. Although I'm very comfortable hiking difficult trails by headlamp, I think if it's just the two of us alone, we may have to wait until another day to do this adventure. I wouldn't want to being rappelling in the dark, but I bet you'd get some good sunset photos in Subway. Echo does seem more reasonable given the time limit. I particularly like Tom's olfactory description. It'll also be easier to get a permit.


    A. Get together with some people that have done Das Boot and go with them
    SlotMachine, Is that an offer? I'll take you up on it if you're going to be around in Oct!

    Just two days? Sad...
    I agree. I wish I could be there longer, but a long weekend will have to do for this adventure!

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy1701 View Post
    Thanks for the responses everyone. Very good advice all around. I'll definitely add Pine Creek to the Keyhole day. For day two,



    12 hours is a very reasonable estimate and the amount of day light will be a rate limiter. Although I'm very comfortable hiking difficult trails by headlamp, I think if it's just the two of us alone, we may have to wait until another day to do this adventure. I wouldn't want to being rappelling in the dark, but I bet you'd get some good sunset photos in Subway. Echo does seem more reasonable given the time limit. I particularly like Tom's olfactory description. It'll also be easier to get a permit.




    SlotMachine, Is that an offer? I'll take you up on it if you're going to be around in Oct!



    I agree. I wish I could be there longer, but a long weekend will have to do for this adventure!
    Smart!

    Heck yes it would be an offer... if we hadn't just hiked the Boot. Any chance I get to hang out with a Wiconsinite, I take it! I've done a pilgrimage to the Sacred Tundra. The people up there are some of the nicest around, don't cha know? Next summer maybe?

    The Keyhole/Pine Creek/Echo combo should work well for your schedule. Looking forward to your trip report.

    Bob
    THE MOST TALKED ABOUT CANYONEERING TRIP OF 2017 - WEST CANYON VIA HELICOPTER.
    TRIP REPORTS: TIGER | BOBCAT | OCELOT | LYNX | SABERTOOTH | CHEETAH | PORCUPINE | LEOPARD

    DON'T BE A STRANGER, LEAVE A COMMENT AND/OR SUBSCRIBE.
    WWW.AMAZINGSLOTS.BLOGSPOT.COM



  10. #9
    Content Provider Emeritus ratagonia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Quiet and charming: Mount Carmel
    Posts
    7,151
    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy1701 View Post
    SlotMachine, Is that an offer? I'll take you up on it if you're going to be around in Oct!
    With a permit in hand, much closer to the event, you stand a good chance of scaring up an experienced submariner for Das Boot.

    A much meatier day than other things on your list. Want to make it a bit lighter - try Russell Gulch/Subway.

    T

  11. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy1701 View Post
    Thanks for the responses everyone. Very good advice all around. I'll definitely add Pine Creek to the Keyhole day. For day two,



    12 hours is a very reasonable estimate and the amount of day light will be a rate limiter. Although I'm very comfortable hiking difficult trails by headlamp, I think if it's just the two of us alone, we may have to wait until another day to do this adventure. I wouldn't want to being rappelling in the dark, but I bet you'd get some good sunset photos in Subway. Echo does seem more reasonable given the time limit. I particularly like Tom's olfactory description. It'll also be easier to get a permit.




    SlotMachine, Is that an offer? I'll take you up on it if you're going to be around in Oct!



    I agree. I wish I could be there longer, but a long weekend will have to do for this adventure!
    If you really want to hit Das Boot/Subway and don't mind finishing in the dark, you'd hit all of the photogenic parts long before dark, it's just the two-three hours of hiking after you finish the technical section that really make the day so long. I'd say the main difficulty added to Das Boot when compared to similar canyons in Zion is the navigation required to get to the entry point of the canyon, which can cause some problems if you mess it up. If you have good beta (plenty available) and perhaps a GPS and hike reasonably fast, I think you could probably finish it without too much trouble. Though I would also take this advice with a grain of salt, as I haven't done the whole shabang in about two years.
    --Cliff

  12. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Slot Machine View Post
    Keyhole is a good way to start. It's a really nice little canyon. Pretty easy.

    Das Boot/Subway is kind of a big step up from Keyhole.

    And, obviously the days in October are shorter... So I'd bet good money on 2 Wisconsinites + almost no experience + short day = 12 hours of hiking with a pitch black finish.

    So... I would do one of the following:

    A. Get together with some people that have done Das Boot and go with them
    B. Do The Subway alone (it is awesome, you won't feel cheated)
    C. Choose another adventure.
    Yes on all of the above.

    Subway alone 1st time is great. Or maybe Spry. 1st timers prob 7-8 hrs, lots of diversity and ton of fun. I'm big on fun factor!

  13. #12
    Euro Utah enthusiast Michael_WB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Geneva, Switzerland
    Posts
    82
    For the first day, like others above, I'd recommend Keyhole/Pine Creek, which for beginning canyoneers is still quite a full-on introduction. Keyhole is fairly straightforward, but Pine Creek holds some challenges: a few awkward(ish) rappel starts, depending on conditions maybe a couple of swimming disconnects, rope management and setting up friction for the final (mostly free) rappel, etc.

    For the second day I'd probably suggest Mystery, if you can swing a permit, in preference to Das Boot/Subway; if not Echo would make a good alternative. I reckon that Spry is a more serious endeavour, not just the strenuous hike-in and numerous rappels, but depending on down-climbing skills, some drops down the watercourse might be a little intimidating.

    n.b. The above advice may well be worth exactly what you paid for it

    Cheers,


    Michael.

Similar Threads

  1. [Wanted] Wanted canyoneering guide/guru/punk for zion trip
    By mdpmvc in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-03-2012, 08:30 AM
  2. Canyoneering in Zion 11/19-11/23
    By bladerider in forum Canyoneering
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 11-18-2011, 08:56 PM
  3. Zion Canyoneering
    By OzGirl in forum Canyoneering
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 07-30-2011, 06:09 AM
  4. [Help] Which canyoneering course in Zion?
    By maarten.1975 in forum Canyoneering
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 06-16-2011, 09:27 PM
  5. First canyoneering trip..ZION for 7 days!!
    By cookiecutter in forum Canyoneering
    Replies: 49
    Last Post: 06-07-2009, 07:06 AM

Visitors found this page by searching for:

Outdoor Forum

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •