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Showing posts with label Canyoneering. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Canyoneering. Show all posts

Rappelling Into The Krubera Cave

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The Krubera Cave (or the Voronya Cave sometimes spelled Voronja Cave) is the deepest known cave on Earth. It is located in the Arabika Massif of the Gagrinsky Range of the Western Caucasus, in the Gagra district of Abkhazia. Bookmark and Share

Canyoneering In Moab, Utah

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At first, I was a bit confused about the difference between caving ( also occasionally known as spelunking in the United States and Canada and potholing in the United Kingdom and Ireland ) and canyoneering.

In very lame terms : exploring Ape Caves or Guler Ice Caves is the most basic type of caving.

During my visit to Moab, I finally got a chance to try canyoneering and saw for myself how different it was from caving.

Again, when I say "caving" all I really mean is a" guided tour of a well explored and maintained cave". You don't really do anything strenuous, challenging, technical.

When it comes to canyoneering, even the most beginner friendly outing might not be suitable for everybody ( fear of heights anybody ? ).

Canyoneering is risky, it's physically demanding, but it's also tons of fun !

During my half day trip I had a chance to explore the beautiful Ephedra's Grotto.

It's a very popular trip, close to downtown Moab, and there are many companies that offer this great experience.

Honestly, I didn't expect much. Repelling down a 100+ feet rope wasn't anything new to me, but the place itself was absolutely amazing !

After walking through the washes and across the slickrock you come to the top of Ephedra's Grotto. You drop 60 feet down to a small ledge which you have to back yourself over and then rappel down another 30 feet. At the bottom you are surrounded by shear cliff walls on every side and so you can only hike out through a small slot opening.

The next repel is even more impressive !

Morning Glory Arch is the fifth largest natural bridge, spanning 243 feet. The first 40 feet you are along the wall but the remaining 70 feet you are suspended in air, surrounded by the beauty of the canyon walls, the arch above and the stream below.

If you have a chance, make sure this is the moment somebody is taking your pictures !

After you're done with repelling, it's 2.2 miles back to the car.

Though I visited both Canyonlands and Arches National Parks, Negro Bill Canyon was my hiking experience in Moab. This is a very popular trail in Moab. It follows a year round stream through a deep sandstone canyon among willows and cottonwoods and sandy trails for several miles ( Morning Glory Natural Bridge is its final destination ).

All in all, I'm happy that my first canyoneering experience took place in Moab !

Again, what exactly is canyoneering ?

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In my first post about canyoneering, I thought I'd understood what canyoneering was, and how different it was from caving/spelunking.

In short, canyoneering is the sport of exploring a canyon (now, all I have to do is to get the difference between a canyon and a cave).
Also, ( and I might be wrong) unlike caving, canyoneering involves a big deal of technical swimming.

If I got it wrong, may be this video will help you get the idea of what canyoneering is all about ( it has 3 parts, so if after watching the first one you are still interested, just continue watching on Youtube ):

Canyoneering in Washington state

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Excuse my ignorance. All this time that I've been writing about caving/spelunking, I'd actually been thinking about canyoneering.
Canyoning (known as canyoneering in the U.S.) is traveling in canyons using a variety of techniques...the terms canyoning and canyoneering are more often associated with technical descents — those that require rappels (abseils) and ropework, technical climbing or down-climbing, technical jumps, and/or technical swims.
This first time I saw a picture of a guy hanging on a rope somewhere in the canyons of the great Southeast ( not sure whether it was Utah or Arizona ), I knew I had to try it !

Honestly, I don't think it was the activity itself that grabbed my attention. I mean, if you think about it, canyoneering is basically just repelling ( descending from a mountain cliff/climbing wall with a rope tied to you with a harness fastened to your waist). Remarkable, intricate landscapes of sweeping slickrock, desolate dirtscapes and wonderful canyons - that's my association with canyoneering.

Most canyoneering in the United States occurs in the many slot canyons carved in the sandstone found throughout the Colorado Plateau. Outside of the Colorado Plateau, numerous canyoneering opportunities are found in the San Gabriel, Sierra Nevada Rocky Mountain ranges and ....Cascades !

I recently stumbled upon Canyoneering Northwest web site, and was surprised to find out that Washington had its own canyoneering enthusiasts.

According to the site, canyoneering in the northwest ( Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Western Canada ) is still in its infancy.
The website devoted to sharing information and ideas for exploring the canyons of the northwest. The purpose of this site is to encourage canyon exploration, share beta, exchange ideas, provide trip reports, help northwest canyoneers connect with one another, and promote safe and responsible canyoneering.
Though, some of the adventure companies in Utah, Arizona and Hawaii offer guided tours, I haven't found anything like that in our state. If you have any information about canyoneering adventures in Washington state, please share with us !

Meanwhile, I am adding a new category to my activity list " Canyoneering "