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Thread: Kaleidoscope (aka Choprock)

  1. #1

    Kaleidoscope (aka Choprock)

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    This is round two of our neon/choprock trip to Escalante. We tackled Kaleidoscope on Saturday, June 9 under clear skies. Planning for a long and physical day, we left our camp at the mouth of Fence Canyon at just a little past 6:00am. The approach hike took us a shade over 3 hours, and we dropped into the slot at just past 9:00am. That approach hike SUCKS. It would be a helluva lot worse if doing it in the heat of the day. Make sure to get an early start on this to avoid heatstroke. Once inside the canyon the temperature drops, and there's clean water available from a series of springs. Using Sawyer filters, we topped off all of our water bottles at that point trying our best to avoid the copious amount of poison ivy that lines all of the pools.

    It looked like we were following in the footsteps of a group that just recently ran through there since there were fresh footprints in the sand in the riparian section. The Riparian section had a decent amount of fresh water, but it looked like it has held more in the past, since we were walking through a narrow dry wash between pools. The Happy section also held a decent amount of water, although mostly just wading. I think we had to swim maybe twice at the most, and even then you could probably get away with going sans wetsuit since the water wasn't too cold, and the swims weren't long. Regardless, I'm glad I took a wetsuit along since I tend to chill easily. My full 4/3 was more than enough. The Grim section was mostly dry -- and we were kind of glad for that. The difficulty factor increases exponentially when this section holds water. Noticing where the logjams were located as well as where the water levels used to be in the past, we marveled at how much more of a challenge this canyon would be when full. About the only notable amount of water in the Grim section was a 50-yard swim in a narrow little slot located just a few hundred feet from the exit rappel. It's a slot that you have to stem down into from a logjam + webbing OR stem down into the swimming section higher up. Either way, that's about the only swimming we did in the Grim section -- and that water is still frigid. But it's not too much of a problem since the canyon opens and ends within about 20 - 30 mins from that point.

    If a picture = 1000 words, then here's 31,000 words for ya'll to enjoy:

    The approach
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    Aerial view of the rappel into the Riparian section
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    The Drop in spot
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    Short downclimb before the Riparian Rappel
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    Short drop before the Riparian Rap
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    The top of the 60 ft Riparian Rap
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    Riparian Rappel
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    My turn on Riparian Rappel
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    Riparian Spring - Watch for poison ivy!
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    Typical scene in Riparian section
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    Lunch Break!!
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    Start of Happy Section - Look at all the Poison Ivy on the right!
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    Happy Section
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    Happy Section
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    Happy Section
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    Happy Section
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    Happy Section
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    Happy Section - Splash Park
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    Happy section - Splash Park
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    Happy Section - Splash Park
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    Happy Section - Splash Park
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    Happy Section - 7m Moki Step Rappel
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    More Happy Section stuff after the Moki Rappel
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    Grim Section - It gets DARK through here
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    Grim Section - It also gets TIGHT
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    This narrow drop into a 50' cold swimmer is very close to the exit rappel
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    Staging at the Final Rappel
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    I promised I'd get everyone's photo at the last rap
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    I'm last...
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    <----I'm with Spartacus

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  3. #2
    Wow, that's crazy dry compared to when I've done it.

  4. #3
    reat photos :-)

  5. #4
    Outstanding trip report.
    Ain't got nobody
    Waiting at home.

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by twotimer View Post
    Outstanding trip report.
    Thanks man. I aim to please. I figure the best way to tell the story is through pictures.

    This trip will go down as one of the best canyoneering trips I've ever had, and I'd like to express my appreciation to the dudes I was with that day. Solid group of guys.
    <----I'm with Spartacus

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