Tag Archives: Cave Creek

Autumn in Zion: Adventure Season

The season for adventure is ripe in Zion right now. The weather is ideal, crowds have thinned out, and permits are readily available. A huge rainstorm just came through the area, which has cooled things down, and filled the canyons with fresh water. This is the season for frolicking, splashing, and exploring.This month I have had the opportunity to descend Cave Creek, Imlay (via the sneak route), the Subway/Das Boot link up, Echo Canyon, and the daily canyon guiding outside the park. These routes represent the full spectrum of technical canyoneering in Zion. Each descent is unique, beautiful, and remote. I find release in this terrain because it lends itself to creative problem solving and having fun. Descending the Subway with a wetsuit, for example, allows ample opportunities for slipping and sliding, swimming, playing in waterfalls, and enjoying an enchanting natural playground. This is the ultimate form of recreation. Canyons are a medium for play, and while there is a certain risk associated with canyoneering, the exercise of exploring, of flirting with danger, and the unknown satisfies a primal desire. My conversation with guided clients often touches upon the need for recreation. It seems that the average American is overstressed … Continue reading

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Canyoneering in Cave Creek

One of the our favorite summertime treats is the chance to get up on the high plateau and descend the gorgeous, deeply plunging, wet and wild canyons there. Cave Creek is a seldom visited but much-loved canyon, our typical descent for an Extreme Adventure Day. Cave Creek is a world of myriad waterfalls: short, tall, chaotic, elegant, simple, and complex. Behind and alongside the taller falls, beautiful green moss grows, dressing the canyon in fabulous emerald green. The sandstone ranges from light browns to deep reds, studded in places with curtains of huecos, small arches, and “drippings” of rock iron-stained rock. In this raw and raucous landscape, it’s always a treat to find a piece of improbable subtlety: a delicate fern or a lone red flower clinging to a sandstone crevice. Adding to the visual beauty, the sound of rushing, pounding, flowing water constantly accompanies us in Cave Creek. The noise raises everyone’s adrenaline a notch, making it very evident we are in a living, breathing, changing canyon. Sometimes you have to yell to the person next to you, just to be heard. If you’re more than 20 feet from them, it’s usually best to use hand signals or a … Continue reading

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