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Thread: 07/23/16 - Subway & Keyhole

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    Moderator jman's Avatar
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    07/23/16 - Subway & Keyhole

    Better late than never. TRs are lacking and I blame myself. I have a LOT of TRs to catch up on (hiking too). But I will start with this one first.

    I'm copying my Facebook from quote as retyping the details kinda suck...


    "Had an awesome weekend in Zion NP with friends, a handful of co-workers and some of their families! It was a privilege to experience the 'Subway' through their eyes for the first time and seeing them experience their first technical slot canyon (Keyhole).Our group consisted of brothers, dads, and sons; from as young as 12 to 69-years young. :)
    105+ degree heat, cold water, squeezing through incredible Zion sandstone canyons, jumping from 10ft high rocks into the cool, clear water below (Pinecreek Swimhole); handful of rappels, enduring a 10+ mile difficult 'hike'; the endless laughter (!!!!) and camaraderie. I was a lucky dude."

    This was my 20th time through the Subway in the past 15 years. And of all those 20 trips, this ranks in my top 3.

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    NOW (2 weeks later), compare this to a RECENT TRIP from a guy over on Canyon Collective. That is a LOT of sand! They are standing where we were once swimming.
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    Picture Credit & Story belong here:

    Continuing on:

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    And here are some of my sister's boyfriend's photos. Now HE is the real photographer. All Rights Reserved to Chris Allen. (Sizes and Quality are GREATLY reduced to protect his rights).

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    Moving on to Keyhole.

    Now THIS was everyone's first technical canyon. I was their leader and so setting up and explaining everything was a real treat. It was the best hearing "this is sooo awesome" over and over again from the group. I'm still that way even after a dozen descents of Keyhole now. It never gets old. But seeing it from another person's eyes for the first time - that's what does it for me. Letting them see and witness first hand, what 99.9% of the world will never do.

    Everyone handled the approach and downclimbs perfectly. No rush. The water levels were chest deep at most.

    At the 2nd rappel, I heard some group above us and so I yelled at them above, "hey, this is gonna take another 10 minutes - you just might wanna stay there".

    Their response, "I'm a national park ranger and need to check your permit!".


    So the ranger comes down and we exchange information and I explain that I am an express permit holder and he demanded I showed him my permit. I showed him.

    He then asked if he could take a look after the 2nd rappel and make sure that there was only 6 of us.

    "Yes, only 6."

    "Okay. Now that that is out of the way, how's the canyon treating you guys?"


    It was a strange interaction that happened all within like 3 minutes.

    I'm glad the rangers check permits, no doubt, but the bed-side manner was odd and rushed.

    We continued on while the other ranger caught up to his friend. The rest of the canyon was uneventful but a hoot. The water was refreshing!

    After the canyon and at dinner, I gave everyone a chance to read 'the Canyon 7", the tragedy that struck last year in Keyhole.

    It was somber for the next 20 minutes recounting the story and their final minutes.

    Continuing on, here are the picture highlights:

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    ●Canyoneering 'Canyon Conditions' @
    ●Subscribe to my friend Jeff's Youtube Channel - you can watch our adventures there.
    ●Hiking Treks (my younger brother's website): hiking guides at
    "There are two ways to die in the desert - dehydration and drowning." -overhearing a Park Ranger at Capitol Reef N.P.
    "He who walks on the edge, will eventually fall."

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