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Your Insights on Pandora’s Box

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Backcountry, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. Backcountry

    Backcountry

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    We plan to do Pandora’s Box this Saturday. The weather looks good for Saturday but they have received 2 inches of rain in the past week. Does anyone know how much water this canyon holds when full? Even though the beta says there is usually no need for a wetsuit with only a couple pools to wade through, I am thinking of wearing a wetsuit because there is a chance that all this rain will have changed the canyon into a much wetter & colder experience than “normal.’ Air temps at Capitol Reef will range from 40 to 56. Any suggestions or insights would be appreciated.
  2. Austin Farnworth

    Austin Farnworth

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    Location:
    Mapleton, Utah
    I would suggest bringing a wet-suit and clothes to wear over top so that your suit doesn't get shredded. I did Pandora's last year in October on a cold day with temps in the low 50's, I would count on it being colder in the canyon because it is very well shaded. In low water, we only got wet to waist deep in one part more than half way through. That specific part could definitely be a full swimmer if it has flooded recently and there looked like there was a lot of potential for other waist high wades in higher water conditions. We didn't have wetsuits when we did it, but I did strip before the deep wade to keep my clothes dry. If I were going right now, I'd bring a wet-suit so I could enjoy the canyon and not worry about the cold.
    ratagonia likes this.
  3. ratagonia

    ratagonia

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    Location:
    Mount Carmel, Utah
    Also, it is a long long day. Longer if you attempt to hike out in the dark. With less than 12 hours of daylight, we usually start an hour before dawn and arrive at Sunrise Rock an hour later. Recommended. Someone will want to scout out the approach during daylight the evening before, because finding the trail up to the bench is challenging in the dark.

    Tom
    cjhaines and Austin Farnworth like this.
  4. Canyonero

    Canyonero

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    Never done that one (although interestingly I did one called Pandora last week) but there are very few canyons I'd do without a wetsuit at 50 degrees. It wasn't much colder than that at Freezefest this year. Not the place to save weight IMHO. Canyoneering is so much nicer with a wetsuit for armor anyway, I hate it when it is too hot to wear one.
    ratagonia likes this.
  5. Backcountry

    Backcountry

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    Thanks for the good advise. We did the canyon in 10.5 hours car to car, using Meek’s Mesa exit. Wouldn’t want to attempt that exit in the dark but it was easy using roadtrip ruan gps mapping. Even though it rained 2 inches in the past week, the pools were only up to thigh deep. We wore wetsuits expecting deeper pools, and the temps were perfect. It was a beautiful fall day and we loved the canyon. In hindsight it was a bit risky to do such a long canyon when the daylight hours are getting short and the nights are so cold because if we had run into any problems or delays it could have been a long cold night getting out of there.
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