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Heaps Heaps Heaps Zion August 20 – 2016

We went to Heaps… Heaps would be my favorite canyon in Zion, except that it is physically demanding a bit past my usual fitness level. Meaning, before a Heaps I have to bear down for two weeks, drink a bit less beer, do a few more runs or training hikes. So when Kip messages me on Tuesday “doing a Heaps this Saturday, you coming?”, I briefly hesitate. The good news is that Kip is strong and energetic and will carry the big rope, and has...

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Not Imlay once more with feeling… July 26, 2016

Back to Zion National Park’s Not-Imlay Canyon. Rumor had it someone left a bunch of ropes hanging, so we organized a trip to go in and retrieve these things. The dangling rope was swung on by the numerous Narrows hikers… until it broke. Emergency over, but cleanup still required.  (Turns out someone cleaned it up before we got in there). We for this trip included a motley crew of Springdalites, including Kim Molyneux, Claudia Morrison, Cassy Brown, James Yellowdart Marvin and me, Tom Jones. We...

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Walker Gulch Zion – July 24 2016 – Scenic Short Canyoneering

It’s hot down here. Anyone notice?  I’ve been doing a lot of canyons, but my energy level is tanking. So how about something kinda short? Walker has been on the list to do for the new guidebook, and I had made an attempt a couple years ago in the fall, when we went down the East Fork only to discover that the East Fork does not get you to the cool big rap that is the big event in this canyon…  (sigh). 104 in Springdale...

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Cassidy Arch Canyon – Anchor Work, summer 2016

Cassidy Arch Canyon has gotten rather popular, of late. The Park has become concerned about the wear and tear in the canyon, including on the tree used for the first anchor. We had been telling people to use a retrievable anchor system so as not to leave a sling for the hiking visitors to fret over, but… With increased traffic, slings left on the tree were a regular thing. The Park permitted a local guide to install bolts next to the tree, but he put...

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There and Back Again, in Lower Echo, Zion, June 25, 2016

Darn hot down here, it is, limiting choices to a few. But Lower Echo (Echo below the trail) is one that is deep and dark, with some water to cool off in. A short approach hike means, not so bad. But the penalty gets paid at the end – since the final rap out of the canyon is closed, one must fix ropes to exit the canyon. A while ago, I put in an anchor to improve the usability of the fixed rope – this...

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A Summer Parunuweap – June 3 & 4 – Zion National Park almost

On the fringe of Zion National Park lies the little sister of the famous Zion Narrows. Parunuweap Canyon holds the smaller East Fork of the Virgin River, rather than the North Fork that runs through the more famous (and popular/crowded) Narrows. Kat2 (Katherine H) from Hurricane was looking to go backpacking for the very first time – this seemed like a good choice. Flat, local, not too long, secluded, beautiful. Why not! Last time I did this, it was November, and it was nice but a...

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Zion KT Road Flowerwalk May 29, 2016

Memorial Day weekend. Zion is PACKED! I’m chillin, but decide to go for a flowerwalk. The wait at the East Entrance is 25 minutes…  I wanted to do the main canyon to look for hanging garden flowers, but there was no parking to be found so I ran away to the KT Road, hoping to get some good cactus shots. SCORE! Right Fork Trailhead: Three classic cacti in-bloom up there. Including the Whipple Cholla, which I had only seen (in the Park) as a landscaping...

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Zion: No Spry, but yes flowerwalk May 26, 2016

Tried to do Spry on Thursday, but rain intervened. Good thing it started raining at the top of the first rappel or this could be a very different story. (Most likely the canyon did not flash, just woulda been not so much fun in a steady light rain which we did not have sufficient clothes for.) Part of my effort to understand the flora of Zion is to record what flowers I see where and when, even if I am not shooting “publishable” photos. I...

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Zion Wildflower Walk Pa’rus April 3, 2016

Saw a bunch of good flowers at the Virgin Goosenecks on Friday, thought maybe I should do a flowerwalk in the Park, so I wandered down in the morning to walk the Pa’rus trail. I’ve seen some good blooms there in the past, but… “But” is, not much of a bloom right now. Just not warm enough yet, I guess. Found 12 species out, including 6 I didn’t know and had not ID-d.  But with a little help from Derrick Zobell aka Sacred Cliffs Photography…...

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Zion spring flowers and Lady Mountain – March 26, 2016

Ran up Lady Mountain last Saturday. We planned on a different adventure, which involved getting wet and cold, but not getting wet and cold sounded a lot better, so at the Zion Lodge we off-loaded. We hiked up the sorta-closed upper-Emerald Pools trail, shortly dumping most of the weight from our packs beside the trail. With lighter packs, we headed upward. Since I already had lots of Lady Mountain pictures, I did not take many on the way up; but did take pics of flowers,...