Saturday, July 20, 2013

Checkerboard Canyon

On July 20th, 2013, Steph, Julie, Nick and I ventured through Checkerboard Canyon.

It was a fun, but very long day. The logistics were intense. Racing the sun across the sky seemed impossible at times. It is a pretty canyon, but one we probably won't visit twice. It's simply too much work.

We were so busy that there was little time for photos. Hopefully Julie posts a few of her's...

Throwing the rope bag on rap #1.

Julie on rappel.

Nick in a big canyon.

Julie heading down the final 200ft rappel.

Steph at the top of the final rappel. 

Nick heading down the flute.

Nick on fireman belay, bottom of the final rappel.
Our timeline:
4:00 AM : Wake up
5:20 AM : Start driving to the trailhead
6:35 AM : Start the approach
10:30 AM : First rappel
5:15 PM : Complete final rappel
9:00 PM : Reach the shuttle
9:50 PM : Seated at Oscar's, rehydrating

We were moving very quickly for 14 hrs, 25 min. We did not stop for lunch. It's the most calories I've ever burned during a day of canyoneering.

Free advice:

The beta on Climb-Utah is excellent and helped greatly with the approach.

On the approach, stay high and right most of the way. There is a sweet ridge that will get you to the top of Dakota Hill with little effort.

Don't bring wetsuits during the summer. This canyon is very warm. Don't bring knee/elbow pads, they aren't worth carrying the extra weight.

For rope, we used 3 X 100' and one 200 footer. This was a good combo to leapfrog down the rappels. I think we did 15 rappels.

4 people is probably the ideal group size for this adventure.

If you miss the 9PM shuttle, you will not get a seat at Oscar's (powerful motivation).

I hope you enjoy this canyon as much as we did!

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