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Hog 3 - Razorback

North Wash beta posted by Dan Ransom
  • The Hype

    The Hog Springs Complex is a canyoneering playground with 4 separate technical slots, each with unique characteristics and difficulties.

    Hog 3, or Razorback, is the most challenging and potentially dangerous canyon in the Hog Springs complex. Expert natural anchor skills are a must, and advanced downclimbing skills are required.

    Razorback is named for the abrasive downclimbs, and intimidating elevators.

    Getting There

    Access Road: Hog-Trachyte road is at mile marker 3.6 on state road 276. This road varies wildly in condition, and is subject to frequent washouts. Generally, high clearance and 4WD are required to reach the trailhead. Hog Springs TH is 2.1 miles from SR276, and is at the crest of a small hill.

    This road is also the preferred access to all of the Hog Springs complex, and continues on to access Trachyotomy, Tik-Tok Bridge, and the "Land of Oz."

    From the Trailhead: Hike northeast across open and sandy terrain for about 10 minutes, until you catch a glimpse of the Hog Springs Complex. Four technical slots are all approached from here.

    Stay on the sandy rim of the complex, and continue traversing to the northeast for roughly 45 more minutes, passing the first small tributary (Hog 4) and continuing on to cross two more drainages (Hog 1, and Hog 2). About 1/3 of a mile after you cross the Hog 2 drainage, you will begin descending into the Hog 3 drainage.

    There is an obvious patch of lighter colored sandstone that is the key to approaching Hog 3. Descend all the way to the white sandstone, and then traverse back to the left on a steep slickrock bowl and route find to the head of the canyon.

    Optional Approach: It is common to descend one or more Hogs in a single day. The easiest way to climb back to the head of another slot is to climb the nose between the mouths of Hog 1 and Hog 2. The slab is about 30 feet, goes at around 5.6, and is all friction. At least one member of your party should be skilled enough to make this climb if you intend to double up on the Hogs.

    The Canyon - Rating: 3A III R+   Longest Rap: 75'   # of Raps: 1-4

    3AIII R+

    Longest Rappel: 75' - There is only one mandatory rappel in Hog 3, but there are a handful of very committing and challenging downclimbs that may be better suited to rappelling, depending on your comfort level. Do not enter this canyon if you are not with a competent team capable of doing R canyons, and downclimbing at a high level.

    Exposure Risk: R+
    The canyon gets an R+ rating for exposed and airy downclimbs. Groups should be comfortable with partner sequencing techniques, and have expert downclimbing skills. This is a difficult canyon, not appropriate for beginner or intermediate canyoneers.

    Water: Razorback will very rarely hold any water, and only immediately after rains. Even then, the deepest pools are less than waist deep. There is one substantial pool after the big downclimb, but it can typically be stemmed easily. The Hogs are often good choices when other canyons are out of condition, as they are south facing and drain quickly.

    Natural Anchors: North Wash is considered a "natural anchor" area. There are currently no bolts in North Wash. Please be competent with natural anchor evaluation and building skills, and plan accordingly.

    Gear Recommendations:
    Technical Canyoneering Kit - including helmet, harness, rappel device, ascending gear
    Pads - Knee, elbow
    Bunny Strap

    The Exit

    There are multiple options for getting back to your car after descending a hog. If you don't have a car shuttle, use either the buttress climb, or the exit gully to get back up top. Hike down the main drainage to Hog Springs Rest Area if you spotted a car.

    Exit Gully: The exit gully is a rough 3rd class scramble up a steep drainage with stretches of rotten rock. It's not a beautiful exit, but it goes and gets you back to your car quickly. It is the first drainage that enters from canyon right, and is easily approached from between the mouths of hog 2 and 3. It trends northwest back to the rim.

    Buttress Climb: If you are doing two hogs in one day, you'll need to get familiar with the buttress climb. Between the mouth of Hog 1 and Hog 2 there is a low angle slab that requires about 15 feet of 5.4 climbing. It requires a careful sequence of moves, but is generally not that difficult. Once on the flat area of slickrock, you can simply follow the ridge back to the top, and either head back to your car or drop another slot.

    Out the Bottom: If your car is at the Hog Springs rest area, begin heading downstream. Beware of poison ivy, and keep an eye out for a bench on river left that makes travel easier. Eventually, make your way back into the streambed, and back to your car.

    Red Tape

    BLM Land: The Hog Springs Complex is located on BLM land, and currently there are no regulations or access issues.

    Most slot canyons are found on public lands managed by the US Government, although a few can be found on private lands. The US Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the National Park Service manage these lands. Each area tends to have unique management issues. As a result, there is not a uniform set of rules governing our use of these lands. For current issues related to canyoneering access, please visit www.americancanyoneers.org.
  • Access Road: Hog-Trachyte road is at mile marker 3.6 on state road 276. This road varies wildly in condition, and is subject to frequent washouts. Generally, high clearance and 4WD are required to reach the trailhead. Hog Springs TH is 2.1 miles from SR276, and is at the crest of a small hill.

    This road is also the preferred access to all of the Hog Springs complex, and continues on to access Trachyotomy, Tik-Tok Bridge, and the "Land of Oz."

    From the Trailhead: Hike northeast across open and sandy terrain for about 10 minutes, until you catch a glimpse of the Hog Springs Complex. Four technical slots are all approached from here.

    Stay on the sandy rim of the complex, and continue traversing to the northeast for roughly 45 more minutes, passing the first small tributary (Hog 4) and continuing on to cross two more drainages (Hog 1, and Hog 2). About 1/3 of a mile after you cross the Hog 2 drainage, you will begin descending into the Hog 3 drainage.

    There is an obvious patch of lighter colored sandstone that is the key to approaching Hog 3. Descend all the way to the white sandstone, and then traverse back to the left on a steep slickrock bowl and route find to the head of the canyon.

    Optional Approach: It is common to descend one or more Hogs in a single day. The easiest way to climb back to the head of another slot is to climb the nose between the mouths of Hog 1 and Hog 2. The slab is about 30 feet, goes at around 5.6, and is all friction. At least one member of your party should be skilled enough to make this climb if you intend to double up on the Hogs.
  • 3AIII R+

    Longest Rappel: 75' - There is only one mandatory rappel in Hog 3, but there are a handful of very committing and challenging downclimbs that may be better suited to rappelling, depending on your comfort level. Do not enter this canyon if you are not with a competent team capable of doing R canyons, and downclimbing at a high level.

    Exposure Risk: R+
    The canyon gets an R+ rating for exposed and airy downclimbs. Groups should be comfortable with partner sequencing techniques, and have expert downclimbing skills. This is a difficult canyon, not appropriate for beginner or intermediate canyoneers.

    Water: Razorback will very rarely hold any water, and only immediately after rains. Even then, the deepest pools are less than waist deep. There is one substantial pool after the big downclimb, but it can typically be stemmed easily. The Hogs are often good choices when other canyons are out of condition, as they are south facing and drain quickly.

    Natural Anchors: North Wash is considered a "natural anchor" area. There are currently no bolts in North Wash. Please be competent with natural anchor evaluation and building skills, and plan accordingly.

    Gear Recommendations:
    Technical Canyoneering Kit - including helmet, harness, rappel device, ascending gear
    Pads - Knee, elbow
    Bunny Strap
  • There are multiple options for getting back to your car after descending a hog. If you don't have a car shuttle, use either the buttress climb, or the exit gully to get back up top. Hike down the main drainage to Hog Springs Rest Area if you spotted a car.

    Exit Gully: The exit gully is a rough 3rd class scramble up a steep drainage with stretches of rotten rock. It's not a beautiful exit, but it goes and gets you back to your car quickly. It is the first drainage that enters from canyon right, and is easily approached from between the mouths of hog 2 and 3. It trends northwest back to the rim.

    Buttress Climb: If you are doing two hogs in one day, you'll need to get familiar with the buttress climb. Between the mouth of Hog 1 and Hog 2 there is a low angle slab that requires about 15 feet of 5.4 climbing. It requires a careful sequence of moves, but is generally not that difficult. Once on the flat area of slickrock, you can simply follow the ridge back to the top, and either head back to your car or drop another slot.

    Out the Bottom: If your car is at the Hog Springs rest area, begin heading downstream. Beware of poison ivy, and keep an eye out for a bench on river left that makes travel easier. Eventually, make your way back into the streambed, and back to your car.
  • BLM Land: The Hog Springs Complex is located on BLM land, and currently there are no regulations or access issues.

    Most slot canyons are found on public lands managed by the US Government, although a few can be found on private lands. The US Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the National Park Service manage these lands. Each area tends to have unique management issues. As a result, there is not a uniform set of rules governing our use of these lands. For current issues related to canyoneering access, please visit www.americancanyoneers.org.

Condition Reports for Hog 3 - Razorback

The information provided here is intended for entertainment purposes only. The creator of this information and/or Canyon Collective are not liable for any harm or damage caused by this information. Conditions in the backcountry are constantly changing, only you are responsible for your safety and well being.