This was a bit of a challenge to find but after some serious studying and sending Vaporman out to scout a couple of times we finally nailed the location. We picked a date, assembled a group of strong canyoneers and set out on the adventure. The top part of the canyon was unknown so we set about 4 ropes and left them in place until we were sure we could get down the canyon with what we had. Had we come to a rap that required more rope than we had we would need to ascend all the raps to get back out. It all worked in our favor and we were able to press on through the canyon. I can't recall the exact number of raps before hitting the waterslide section but there were at least 6 or 7. We built most of the anchors on sturdy little bushes
and then worked to do a slow steady release of our weight. I think we used a meat anchor as a back up on a few of the raps.
Eventually we hit the white slick rocks, a gazillion slime covered waterslides, and deep pools of nearly freezing water. I'm convinced that dry suits are the way to go. I was shivering for hours in my 3/2 wetsuit. The guys in 7mm were plenty warm but those in dry suits were just having more fun than the rest of us. I'm not a seasoned slider so this part of the canyon made me pretty nervous. I get caught up in the plunge with the massive sinus flush and the seconds that the cold water stops your breathing...even though only momentarily. So I'm not really a risk taker...I like to know all the dynamics behind how things work and why they aren't risky before I engage so the out of control slipping and sliding while smashing into rocks and catching a little air before splashing into bacteria filled freezing water sort of spooks me a bit. After some coaching, coaxing and a public moment of silence I was ready to play, too! It was so fun. The guys just couldn't stop themselves and kept climbing back up and around for more and more turns on the big slides.
The day ended with a sunset walk to the car and a shuttle ride back up to the top. Another beautiful canyon in our awesome state! http://vimeo.com/21162389
On a side note---A handful of us that played in this canyon together are sick........coincidence or not? I'm resting comfortably at home waiting for the antibiotics to kick this trifecta of sinusitis, bronchitis and pneumonia so I can get my gills back in a canyon!