Top Utah Technical Slot Canyons To Canyoneer
If you are in the mood for a canyoneering adventure, then Utah is the place to go. You can take your pick from different locations including Cedar Mesa San Rafael Swell, Escalante, North Wash, and Zion. All of them have fantastic slot canyons ranging from wet to dry ones for those who want some technical canyoneering.
Here are 5 slot canyons to definitely check out in Utah:
Heaps Canyon in Zion.
Heaps Canyon is perfect for those looking for a wet canyon to cool off on a hot summer day. With a rating of 4B V R, this is one of the hardest canyons in Zion. Expect continuous wading and swimming in cold water with difficult pothole exits. You’ll need a permit to visit this canyon and excursions are limited to two groups of six per day. Ensure that at least one member of your canyoneering crew has gone through this canyon before.
Shenanigans Canyon in West Butler, S.E Utah.
In spite of its whimsical name, this isn’t a canyon to be taken lightly. Shenanigans Canyon consists of very narrow slots so pack light, small packs. Even then, expect it to be a bit of a squeeze. Small bodied people will have more fun going through this canyon.
Neon Canyon in Escalante.
This canyon has a rating of 3B IV with 5 rappels, the longest being 83ft. The best time to visit Neon Canyon is during the spring or fall and while no permit is required for daytime use, you’ll need one if you’re planning to go for overnight backpacking. Keep in mind that Escalante is a natural anchors only area so don’t place bolts anywhere.
Baptist Draw in San Rafael Swell.
It takes about 4-9hrs to go through the Baptist Draw Canyon and its best to go during the spring, fall or winter months. This canyon offers 3 rappels with the longest being 83ft, taking you through interesting and beautiful narrows. There is no potable water in the canyon so bring enough to see you through.
Black Hole of White Canyon at Cedar Mesa.
While this canyon doesn’t have several rappels, it still guarantees hours of fun, especially for those who love wet canyons. Once you descend, you’ll find yourself in a huge cold pool surrounded by lovely sandstone walls. Since you’ll be swimming most of the way, this canyon is best tackled in the summer, fall or spring as it’s too cold during the winter.
While descending canyons to discover what lies at the bottom can be a thrilling adventure, it comes with its own inherent hazards. These include getting lost, falling and sustaining injuries or even getting swept away by flash floods. Because of this, you need to have the right skills, experience, common sense and the necessary canyoneering gear and equipment to safely complete your adventure.
Also, remember to always be a responsible canyoneer by learning and practicing the rules and ethics of canyoneering. Other than that, have fun and stay safe on your canyoneering adventure!