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UT: San Rafael Swell Baptist Draw / Upper Chute Canyon

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by Blake Merrell, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. Blake Merrell

    Blake Merrell Lovin' Utah's Backcountry

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Spanish Fork, Ut


    This canyon is what started it all. My love for technical canyoneering started one semi-cold April weekend. What was intended to be a day of ranging the desert in my friends Jeep, Ended up being the beginning of a LOVE for technical canyoneering!

    I had heard about this canyon--Baptist Draw--that was located in my home town desert (the San Rafael Swell) and really wanted to check it out. I had never done a technical slot canyon before, but I still had this urge and great desire to descend them. I take that back, It was not my first technical canyon ever. I once rappelled down into the Upper Black Box with a college group and I LOVED that experience. I had also visited the slot canyon called Little Wild Horse many times... so yeah, is it really any wonder why I was so excited to peek into this technical slot?

    Anyway, after a really fun morning of Jeeping and such, we made our way to the slot canyon. When we arrived at the trail head we ran into a fellow Canyoneer and his daughter, little did we know that later on they would be our guides through this marvellous canyon. After talking briefly to this group of two, we went on our way. Dawning our light packs, we trekked off to hike as much as we could of the slot canyon.

    Our intentions for this outing was just to find the canyon and explore what we could without ropes (we felt we didn't have the skills yet to descend technical slot canyons) Once we found the canyon, we couldn't help but go as far as we could into Baptist Draw.

    What I saw was WONDERFUL! I instantly fell in love with the supper narrow slot, and the down climbs were a blast! Before we knew it we found our selves meeting up with the Canyoneering and his daughter at the first rappel!

    To our great delight, this kind man offered to let us tag along with him through the canyon. We would just share harnesses and gear. This was the first time in MANY years since I had been on a rope. I WAS SO EXCITED! My heart was filled with pure joy as we walked through this canyon. Every turn contained a beautiful new view! Every rappel was a new adventure! This was like nothing I had ever done or seen before (well it felt that way anyway :)

    When the trip was over my heart was full and my body was exhausted. I will forever be grateful for that good Canyoneer and his daughter. They were very kind to us, and because of them what was a pretty good trip turned into a MARVELLOUS one!

    This is what we saw:

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    ratagonia likes this.
  2. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    Nice Blake. What is your original hometown, down there?

    Tom
  3. Blake Merrell

    Blake Merrell Lovin' Utah's Backcountry

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Spanish Fork, Ut
    Thanks Tom,

    I grew up in Castle Dale. Well Technically "Wilberg Wash", suburb of Castle Dale ;)
  4. Mountaineer

    Mountaineer Is that an X slot?

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    Hate it when you find graffiti...ugh.

    Nice report!
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