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Thread: Sandthrax Ascent and Descent 10/10/16

  1. #1

    Sandthrax Ascent and Descent 10/10/16

    Sandthrax Canyon! Finally checked off of the list!

    When I began Canyoneering a few years ago, I heard about Sandthrax "The Chasm of Doom" and we always used to joke about doing it, thinking we would never actually do something that crazy... but, as I got more and more difficult canyons under my belt, I started feeling like it was something I could do and that it would be the type of challenge that I would enjoy. I was not disappointed!

    After trying to talk everyone from my adventure group into going with me and receiving no interest in return, I started reaching out to strangers (via Youtube, Facebook, local climbing community, etc.) who had done it before, hoping to find someone that would want to do it again. I watched a great video of Sandthrax posted by Aaron Collett and messaged him. He replied back that he and two others (Spencer Naumann and Dallin Palmer) would be doing it two days later. What Luck! After i got the "ok" from the wife and boss we planned to meet for the ride Down.

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    Gearing up to start. Aaron in the Red Sweatshirt, Spencer in the grey shirt, Dallin in the red shirt and tan shorts

    Both Aaron and Spencer had descended Sandthrax before and felt like they wanted to make it a longer day, so we were planning to Ascend the Canyon, turn around, and head straight back the way we came. Aaron had a pretty bad cold but did the whole thing anyway, coughing his guts out every ten seconds. You can hear him in the video at the end of the TR. I can't imagine how much harder that made the canyon, not being able to fully breathe the entire time. He is a beast!

    After the short approach and first climb, Dallin was feeling worried about having the endurance to do the canyon both ways, so he headed back out to wait an hour or so, and then head up the traditional approach to meet us at the head of the canyon.

    Having never done the canyon before, I had nothing to compare it to. But now having done it both ways I can tell you that going up the canyon is MUCH harder than going down, both in endurance, and skill/technique. One thing that was easier, was that the OW crux became a rappel, and when we descended the canyon again, we already had our rope in place to climb up. I tried to stem the silo high and pass over the offwidth as I had heard others describe it, but I could not finish the moves and had to pull on the rope to make it up. I would like to do the canyon again facing the crux as everyone else has.

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    Climbing up from the darkest part of the canyon. There was a bolt at the top of this climb, I assume because it looks very difficult from above, but if you would like to "free" this canyon, this rappel can be bypassed by stemming over the silo to where I am in the photo and then down, rather than trying to go down into the silo.

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    Spencer just Chilling 30+ feet off the deck

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    Some cool wall textures and colors This is looking back at Aaron and Spencer on the part of the canyon that (in my opinion) had the highest exposure. If they were to fall and bounce wrong, they would be falling 90+ feet before hitting the deck!

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    The last black hole silo crossing with a cool feature

    We made it from the car to the head of the canyon in 2h 40m and met up with Dallin. We took a quick meal and rest and headed back down.

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    One of the few places where you are on the ground

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    Dallin Mae Westing the crap out of this canyon. Yes, Mae West is now a verb too.

    Even having just gone up the canyon, I still thought several times that we were nearly out before we were. But at last, we made it! from the head of the canyon to the car took us 3h10m.

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    At the end of the trip. Pants a little worse for wear

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    Even though the weather forecast said there was a 0% chance of rain, 45 minutes after we made it out a rainstorm hit! Close Call! Thank the heavens we were out by then.

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    Watching "Despicable Me" on the ride home. Most of us were too tired to carry on a conversation, so it helped fill the silence.

    This was an incredibly fun canyon. I think the beta and ratings I found are appropriate and accurate. A HUGE thanks to these guys for letting a stranger go through a canyon of this intensity with them!

    Here is a short video with the highlights from our trip!

    Thanks for reading! Please don't hesitate to comment or email me with any beta or trip questions

    Anthony Dye
    Utah Canyoneer

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  3. #2
    Content Provider Emeritus ratagonia's Avatar
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    Quiet and charming: Mount Carmel
    Awesome, and congratulations.


  4. Likes Utah Canyoneer, dakotabelliston liked this post
  5. #3
    Thanks for sharing.

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  7. #4
    You did this in jeans with no pads and no gloves?? More formal than a bathrobe and slippers, but not by much.

    You sir, are a badass. Nice job and great video. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Likes Utah Canyoneer, dakotabelliston liked this post
  9. #5
    For those of you who have never had the pleasure of canyoneering with Anthony, you should consider it. And I'm not just saying that because he's my brother.

  10. #6
    Thanks for the compliment @Slot Machine! I have really enjoyed reading your posts and trip reports, and your canyoneering map is the best thing since sliced bread. I'm sure that it takes a ton of your time, thanks for making it free!

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