Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Canyoneering at Zion

Wendy, her friend Andi, Jennifer, Darryl and Greg on an amazing trip to Zion.  Mother Nature got in the way of some of our plans but we still managed to have some incredible experiences.  We headed down on the 24th and camped out on our friend Michael Behunin's lawn in LaVerkin.  The next morning we started bright and early in hopes to beat the rain that was expected to move in.  We did just that. I think we started at the Wildcat Canyon Trail head.  This is the top-down approach of the Subway.  That way you get to see parts that you aren't able to see coming from the bottom.  It was a great canyon.  Not my most favorite but I'll take it.  When we were driving back to the park the rain began to pour.  We made it out just in time.  Darryl is so good like that-- He knows the conditions so well that he knows even though some serious rain is in the forecast we would be okay if we started early enough.  When we got back to the park to pick up our permits for the next day we found that due to the flash floods they had stopped issuing permits.  They would likely start issuing permits in a couple hours so Darryl and Greg decided to summit Angels Landing while we waited.  Wendy, Andi, and I drove to Orderville to visit an old work friend of Wendy's.  We spent that night in the campground at Zion's Ponderosa.  It was a great location for our hike trail heads and Wendy was an intern there a couple years ago and so we had fun hearing about her adventures there.  The next day we did Mystery.  This was a hike that I loved every minute of.  When we were done I wanted to just go back and do it all again.  It was so awesome!  The rappels were intense and the sights were beautiful.  Definitely one of my all time favorites!  Again we made it out just before the rain started.  During these rain storms this week the Virgin River was flowing at 1,000-4,000 cubic feet per second at times.  That is insane.  To give perspective, Zion stops issuing permits when the river is flowing over 120 cubic feet per second!  We felt really lucky to get the two canyons in that we did.  We weren't too surprised on day 3 when we woke up to rain and we knew dropping into a canyon wouldn't be an option-- at least a smart option. :)
Instead we all headed back home satisfied with the wonderful experiences we had.

Made it to the summit of Angels Landing in I think about 45 min.  Impressive!--Especially considering they spent a good chunk of the day hiking the Subway.

A dinosaur foot print.  There were about six prints in the wall of the subway.

The victory picture.  What an awesome canyon!  Love Mystery!

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