Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Zions 2009

Well, once again I accompanied Mark and Dave on the annual Zions trip. Dave lets me come along to make sure that all his young men can make it through. I'm a better indicator than Dave or Mark would be! Brian was also able to come, which was fun. This year we did keyhole again, and then scoped out Pine Creek slot canyon. Getting the permits was pretty much a miracle for Pine Creek. We arrived in line at about 6:15 a.m. and still there were no more left. However, Dave worked his magic with the lady behind us who said her husband and a bunch of friends were doing Pine Creek, but six of the twelve people on one of the permits didn't show up. We couldn't switch them without her husbands friend there however, and we didn't have a way to get ahold of him. We drove to the Pine Creek trailhead and luckily the group was just preparing to leave. Anyway, it all worked out in the end--the weather was perfect, and the trip was great!

The water was cold and STINKY! I felt a little bit like I was swimming through the sewer. What could be more fun?

This is me, happily posed for a repel down into the cold water.

This is me, unhappily showing off the hair that Dave was obliged to saw off with his leatherman knife after it got sucked into my atc with the rope. Luckily I was about a foot off the groung so he was able to reach it and cut it off. Lesson learned: always tie your hair in a tight bun when repelling!

The view from the bottom of the canyon is pretty spectacular. Then again, Zions is pretty spectacular no matter where you are.

This was our last repel--100 feet of freefall, without even a cliff to steady your feet on. The worst part was dropping off the edge and having nowhere for your feet to go. I had to stare straight agead and inch my way slowly down, unlike Brian who flew down so fast his hand blistered through his leather glove. The trip was a lot of fun though, and I would highly recomend Pine Creek for those who like short, intense, canyoneering.