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mini location map2011-07-22
19 by photographer avatarmetalmansion81
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Willow ValleyPayson, AZ
Payson, AZ
Canyoneering avatar Jul 22 2011
metalmansion81
Canyoneering8.50 Miles 760 AEG
Canyoneering8.50 Miles   7 Hrs      1.21 mph
760 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
B - Up to light current; wading/swimming; possible wet/dry suit
III - Normally requires most of a day
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Took Friday off work and drug a friend along to check out another non-technical canyon up on the rim. Cached some water at the Maxwell trailhead and drove over to the Maxwell tank to drop in. Willow Valley starts of as a pretty nasty bushwhack down a small drainage, but soon opened up into an awesome Coconino sandstone canyon. A few short down climbs to the valley floor and a few minutes of boulder hopping brought us to the first of the 3 swims. Looked for the climbing route to the right mentioned in Canyoneering Arizona, but didn't find anything promising, so we sucked it up and got in the COLD water! We motored through the 3 swimmers quickly and got to boulder hopping through the gorgeous sandstone narrows to warm back up.

Once the valley opened up and the creek showed up it was back to bushwhacking on one side of the creek or the other or wading down the middle. At times the vegetation was very dense and left any exposed skin looking like a gang of alley cats attacked us, one plant we brushed by made us itch like crazy till we rinsed off in the creek. Stinging nettles maybe? Those creek miles feel so much longer than normal miles and it felt like took way too long to get to the Maxwell Trail, but it finally showed up.

We hiked up the Maxwell trail with only a small amount of water left and were very happy to have cached that gallon for the 3 mile road walk back to the truck. Awesome weather all day and a fun canyon. Can't wait to explore further down in WCC and see the White Box and Hanging Garden I keep hearing about!
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2 Photosets

  2011-07-22
  2011-07-09
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