Not-Imlay Canyon in Zion for the First Time!
"A couple long rappels, kinda brushy, not so good" was the answer.
This was the canyon that starts at the between-the-passes of the Imlay Right-hand Sneak route, and ends up in the Narrows not far upcanyon from Mystery at the head of the Gooseneck. I immediately labelled it "Not-Imlay" but had not gotten around to doing it, as it did not sound so hot, and rapped into the Narrows. On that July day, the Narrows was teeming with people - rapping into the river among them would require care, and if the canyon was not so hot, why bother? The canyon got mentioned not and again - and the omnivorous Luke Galyan put together a crew and did it a couple years ago. Then Mike S. this spring... seemed like about time for me!
Amanda went in for the permit the day before.
"Four for Not-Imlay, please."
The desk-person looked at her with an air of annoyance: "You guys gotta get a better name for that!"
While the winter has been dryish, it is still winter more or less, and our little crew was looking for a dryish canyon to do. Tuesday I had done Keyhole with an old friend, and while it was short and not all so cold, now I was thinking cold cold cold, and anything that involved getting wet was out! Not-Imlay seemed like a good choice, even if it was expected to be not so hot.
Our crew today was all-Zion Adventure Company: Amanda Jessop, Rich McIver and Kat Power. Out for a nice Thursday stroll...
We rallied up in the morning and hit the trail, even without a scone. No wetsuits - good. A big strong guy to carry the 300' rope - good. Snowed yesterday - uh, hope it does not amount to much!
We tried to get a ride up on the carts for the new Angels Landing zip-line, but without a ticket, they kicked us out. We proceeded to the Imlay Sneak Route, and soon turned right and entered the Not-Imlay drainage. Down we went, avoiding the water on the canyon floor by traversing dirt high above, soon arriving at a very nice slickrock area that lead us down to the first rappel. Down we went. The scenery was fantastic, and the canyon a dropper. Eventually there were some downclimbs, and a rap from a suspicious bolt. Finally a final rappel into the Narrows, a long one, maybe 240 feet. I got the rope and a piece of webbing tangled 15 feet off the ground, and Amanda got the pull-cord all tangled up. Woe be us... (hardly)!
Nice canyon. No water. Good stuff. Fun one. 9 am to 5 pm.