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TR: Birch/Orderville, Hidden, and Grand Canyon

Discussion in 'Archives - Yahoo Canyons Group' started by ionsmuse, Dec 16, 2005.

  1. ionsmuse

    ionsmuse Guest

    The chronicle continues....

    Zion is beautiful this time of year; the daytime temps were great, only issue being (for folks living in a truck) the looong nights. Possible solution, trips extending into the night.

    Meredith begs off Birch, after seeing the amount of snow on the ground and ice in the creek. We retreat, and decide that my ambition is still hungry. I'll head down Birch, down Orderville, and she'll pick me up at the Temple after dark, I say around 7. It's noon. Off I go. Birch is lovely. The first rap is an ice route, which I bypass, and the first rap for me (first bolts) has a small pool at the base. A tension traverse solves this. The rest is excellent, until the penultimate rap brings a 1/2" powers hanging most of the way out (still slung for use). I try to unscrew it, hit it with a rock a few times, no luck. I'm afraid a hacksaw might be necesary for this one. Instead, I move a 12' by 18" pine log into position between a boulder and the canyon wall, and equalize it and the remaining bolt with 50' of webbing. Pity that canyon has bolts, as it's obvious that none of them are needed.

    Upper Orderville had me wanting ice skates, or at least crampons. I granny shuffle along. Later the drysuit (with blown neck gasket) comes out for running water and gorgeous ice flows in the lower bits. The only other moment of note came a quarter mile above Mystery, when a 100' by 40' sheet of ice cuts loose off the slab and shatters at my feet. I was truly stricken dumb and immobile, watching it truck at me. I arrive at the parking lot in time to peel off the suit top and layer up a fleece before Meredith arrives and I inhale food, basking in the caloric glow.

    Two days later, Hidden. A cool ice flow is forming off the west side of Cable Mountain, seems like it must touch down and be climable most of the time. We found no footprints headed towards Hidden, sun, and an series of an 85 and 60 footer to get into the canyon (the first one ghosted to deprive enterprising tourist of a souvenir). On down Hidden reveals itself to be, very straight. No bends. Are these canyons (e.g. Gunsight into Heaps and others) eroding along fault lines? An interesting peculiarity. We find lots of fun climbs, a short handline, and two raps. Both raps are ~50', and off fattie logs. The first in particular was a momumentally undercut chockstone system. Very cool. The second had a superfluous bolt, 3/8 powers, easily unscrewed (it was almost there by itself). Note to bolt placers (first, look for options): TAKE THE BLUE BITS OFF BEFORE YOU TAP IT INTO THE STINKING HOLE! Don't carry gear (be it a compass, electric shaver, or bolt kit) you don't know how to use!!!!

    Hidden was cool. Casual, long (on hiking), and scenic. Recommended. (Like everything.)

    Next to the Grand Canyon. Our truck choose the day of my rim to rim to rim hike (15 hours or so) to not start (corroded cable clamps), thus stranding me (and Meredith who did her own rim to river to rim) in the El Tovar cocktail lounge at 8 pm, 7 miles away from the car. (The shuttle don't run past five.) Do we get the car she says? Hell no I say, my feet and legs hurt more than they ever have (marathon, WRIAD, 18 hour days lost in the Swell), I want a bath and room service (the cranberry and banana cake is excellent)!!

    There are also some very interesting technical canyons out thar. Need warmer weather.

    As I progress in knowledge, I find that always I need a bigger cup.

    -d
  2. adkramoo

    adkramoo Guest

    --- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "ionsmuse" <ionsmuse@y...> wrote:
    The chronicle continues....
    Zion is beautiful this time of year; We retreat, and decide that my ambition is > still hungry. I'll head down Birch, down Orderville, and she'll pick > me up at the Temple after dark, I say around 7. It's noon. Off I go. > Birch is lovely. The first rap is an ice route, which I bypass, and > the first rap for me (first bolts) has a small pool at the base. A > tension traverse solves this. The rest is excellent, until the > penultimate rap brings a 1/2" powers hanging most of the way out > (still slung for use). I try to unscrew it, hit it with a rock a few > times, no luck. I'm afraid a hacksaw might be necesary for this one. > Instead, I move a 12' by 18" pine log into position between a boulder > and the canyon wall, and equalize it and the remaining bolt with 50' > of webbing. Pity that canyon has bolts, as it's obvious that none of > them are needed.

    Yeah, I heard tell that a guide service bolted it up. Not sure though. Anyone? But another example of the "ethical dilemma." Kipper explored the canyon and "gave" it to the public, and in this case, in a few short years, that is the result. And people wonder why some canyons are kept close to the hip?


    Upper Orderville had me wanting ice skates, or at least crampons. I > granny shuffle along. Later the drysuit (with blown neck gasket) > comes out for running water and gorgeous ice flows in the lower bits.

    Must have been a bit dicey approaching some of those small waterfalls. Those areas get pretty iced over. Did you have lots of icicles hanging off the walls, or is it a bit too early in the season, in Orderville proper?

    > The only other moment of note came a quarter mile above Mystery, when > a 100' by 40' sheet of ice cuts loose off the slab and shatters at my > feet. I was truly stricken dumb and immobile, watching it truck at > me.

    Wow! How thick was the ice?

    > Two days later, Hidden. We found no footprints headed towards Hidden,

    Why doesn't that surprise me? ;-)

    > an series of an 85 and 60 footer to get into the canyon

    The 60 footer is usually downclimbed. What did you find? Ice? In the late winter and spring, one finds ice chunks, from avalanches, about the size of footballs, all the way down the gully, with snow in between. You have to turn your ankles in, in the grooves between the blocks and carefully downclimb, even though it is pretty low angle. It can be like that for several hundred yards.

    > Hidden reveals itself to be, very straight. No bends. Are these > canyons (e.g. Gunsight into Heaps and others) eroding along fault > lines? An interesting peculiarity.

    I'm guessing your right. Lots of parallel stuff within a few miles

    We find lots of fun climbs, a > short handline, and two raps. Both raps are ~50', and off fattie > logs. The first in particular was a momumentally undercut chockstone > system. Very cool.

    And awkward. How about that cave??

    The second had a superfluous bolt, 3/8 powers, > easily unscrewed (it was almost there by itself). Note to bolt > placers (first, look for options): TAKE THE BLUE BITS OFF BEFORE YOU > TAP IT INTO THE STINKING HOLE!

    How about this....Lower in the canyon there is a pair of bolts at calf height, in a long straightaway. The only explanation I can figure is that, this canyon, full of false bottoms and soil, rearranged itself, filling in this drop. I have experienced the same thing in Das Boot. A rap no longer exists there, that did for over a decade (disappeared about 8 years ago. Also saw a "set up" anchor in Right Fork, that set you up for a 2 foot rap, into sand.

    > Hidden was cool. Casual, long (on hiking), and scenic. Recommended.

    And private, I'm guessing ;-)

    (and Meredith who did her own rim to river to rim)

    She has really embraced the sport. Come a far way, in a short time. Say hi to her, from the family I remember her enthusiasm at TurkeyFest...and her cobbler...Yum.

    > As I progress in knowledge, I find that always I need a bigger cup.

    Dave, thank you for the continuing saga......It has been great to live through you and Meredith for a spell. Ram
  3. ionsmuse

    ionsmuse Guest

    > Yeah, I heard tell that a guide service bolted it up. Not sure > though. Anyone? But another example of the "ethical dilemma." Kipper > explored the canyon and "gave" it to the public, and in this case, in > a few short years, that is the result. And people wonder why some > canyons are kept close to the hip?

    Indeed.



    > Upper Orderville had me wanting ice skates, or at least crampons. I
    granny shuffle along. Later the drysuit (with blown neck gasket)
    comes out for running water and gorgeous ice flows in the lower > bits.
    Must have been a bit dicey approaching some of those small > waterfalls. Those areas get pretty iced over. Did you have lots of > icicles hanging off the walls, or is it a bit too early in the > season, in Orderville proper?

    Loads of icicles in the lower part of the canyon. I actually rapped the first "rap" due to the chimney being totally coated. Further down some of the slabs around the waterfall were somewhat less than casual, but I stayed dry (ie nothing over chest deep).



    > Wow! How thick was the ice?

    Maybe an inch.


    an series of an 85 and 60 footer to get into the canyon
    > The 60 footer is usually downclimbed.

    I think we rapped in further west than most. The shorter rap was quite bushwacky, but would be rather interesting to downclimb.

    What did you find? Ice? In the > late winter and spring, one finds ice chunks, from avalanches, about > the size of footballs, all the way down the gully, with snow in > between. You have to turn your ankles in, in the grooves between the > blocks and carefully downclimb, even though it is pretty low angle. > It can be like that for several hundred yards.

    We saw a few ice chunks (and saw some ~5' icicles fall across the canyon while entering), but the ground was frozen mostly solid, making for careful downclimbing of what I'm sure in the summer would be cake.


    Dave, thank you for the continuing saga......It has been great to > live through you and Meredith for a spell.

    We've been having fun, and growing. Living in a truck for three months with your S.O. 24/7 is excellent for bringing to your attention issue more easily ignored in everyday life. It's the sort of thing that would probably be illustrative for a lot of people here, trying to balance family with the very personal drive that most of us have towards the outdoors. I've shied away from it because it seemed like it could be somewhat gaudy in so public a forum, and more significantly because it would be a truly daunting topic to write on.

    I do have a grad school admissions personal essay to write by the end of the month, I may use that to explore the topic and post some thoughts here.

    The holidays, and family are almost here. Next adventure is eating mom's pie!

    Also, the drivers in Sedona are morons.

    -d
  4. ~tanya

    ~tanya Guest

    --- In Yahoo Canyons Group, "ionsmuse" <ionsmuse@y...> wrote:
    The chronicle continues....
    Zion is beautiful this time of year; the daytime temps were great, > only issue being (for folks living in a truck) the looong nights. > Possible solution, trips extending into the night.
    Meredith begs off Birch, after seeing the amount of snow on the ground > and ice in the creek. We retreat, and decide that my ambition is > still hungry. I'll head down Birch, down Orderville, and she'll pick > me up at the Temple after dark, I say around 7. It's noon. Off I go. > Birch is lovely. The first rap is an ice route, which I bypass, and > the first rap for me (first bolts) has a small pool at the base. A > tension traverse solves this. The rest is excellent, until the > penultimate rap brings a 1/2" powers hanging most of the way out > (still slung for use). I try to unscrew it, hit it with a rock a few > times, no luck. I'm afraid a hacksaw might be necesary for this one. > Instead, I move a 12' by 18" pine log into position between a boulder > and the canyon wall, and equalize it and the remaining bolt with 50' > of webbing. Pity that canyon has bolts, as it's obvious that none of > them are needed. >

    Nice report! Birch is one of my favorites :)

    > Upper Orderville had me wanting ice skates, or at least crampons. I > granny shuffle along. Later the drysuit (with blown neck gasket) > comes out for running water and gorgeous ice flows in the lower bits. > The only other moment of note came a quarter mile above Mystery, when > a 100' by 40' sheet of ice cuts loose off the slab and shatters at my > feet. I was truly stricken dumb and immobile, watching it truck at > me. I arrive at the parking lot in time to peel off the suit top and > layer up a fleece before Meredith arrives and I inhale food, basking > in the caloric glow.

    Ouch! Scarey!


    Two days later, Hidden. A cool ice flow is forming off the west side > of Cable Mountain, seems like it must touch down and be climable most > of the time. We found no footprints headed towards Hidden, sun, and > an series of an 85 and 60 footer to get into the canyon (the first one > ghosted to deprive enterprising tourist of a souvenir). On down > Hidden reveals itself to be, very straight. No bends. Are these > canyons (e.g. Gunsight into Heaps and others) eroding along fault > lines? An interesting peculiarity. We find lots of fun climbs, a > short handline, and two raps. Both raps are ~50', and off fattie > logs. The first in particular was a momumentally undercut chockstone > system. Very cool. The second had a superfluous bolt, 3/8 powers, > easily unscrewed (it was almost there by itself). Note to bolt > placers (first, look for options): TAKE THE BLUE BITS OFF BEFORE YOU > TAP IT INTO THE STINKING HOLE! Don't carry gear (be it a compass, > electric shaver, or bolt kit) you don't know how to use!!!!
    Hidden was cool. Casual, long (on hiking), and scenic. Recommended. > (Like everything.)

    Again, nice. :)


    Next to the Grand Canyon. Our truck choose the day of my rim to rim > to rim hike (15 hours or so) to not start (corroded cable clamps), > thus stranding me (and Meredith who did her own rim to river to rim) > in the El Tovar cocktail lounge at 8 pm, 7 miles away from the car. > (The shuttle don't run past five.) Do we get the car she says? Hell > no I say, my feet and legs hurt more than they ever have (marathon, > WRIAD, 18 hour days lost in the Swell), I want a bath and room service > (the cranberry and banana cake is excellent)!!

    Rim to Rim in a day! What a trooper!


    There are also some very interesting technical canyons out thar. Need > warmer weather.
    As I progress in knowledge, I find that always I need a bigger cup.
    -d >
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