Such a great canyoneering & creek hiking loop!
James Canyon was as much fun as ever with a few sweet narrow sections that require some short down climbing, chilly swimmers, and short rappels with easier sections of rock hopping, wading, and bushwhacking in between. My favorite rappel is that 40-footer which is also a great place to warm up and grab some lunch. The water was chilly but not unbearable though that last long narrow swimmer was mighty cold!
We dropped our gear here since last Fall there were no more swimmers afterwards. Though this spring we ran across a few knee waders and one interesting log jam swimmer that had us log balancing & straddling in our attempt to stay dry. I was pushing the log along like one of those canal boats in Venice and I was almost to the other side when I grabbed the wall for support and the log slide away and rolled me off.
The water wasn't too bad though, only my pants got wet since I stuff my shirts in my dry keg, while Kelli was skilled enough to stay on and I held the log while she straddled it back to dry land.
James canyon always seems to take forever and I was afraid we'd be hiking out near sunset, but we finally hit Pumphouse Wash and the rock hop upstream to Kelly Canyon went by fairly quickly. Those falls had been dry the previous times I've seen it, so it was cool to finally see it flowing with a huge swimming hole under it. After James & Pumphouse, the trail along Kelly Canyon was a welcome relief up that scenic little canyon and I lucked out and was able to find the same place I climbed to the rim last time and road walked back to the car with plenty of daylight to spare.