Long Canyon/White Canyon

BJett

Member
Joined
May 3, 2013
Messages
528
Steve Allen’s Canyoneering 2 - Technical Loop Hikes In Southern Utah. This was the book that began my fascination with the White Canyon Complex, even though I had never done any technical canyoneering, or even much exploring in the canyon country at that point. I had recently moved to Grand Junction, CO after spending 2 years in Denver. I moved to Colorado for the mountains, and I ended up staying out west for the Colorado Plateau and its nooks, crannies and sense of, well, awesomeness.
I've made 5 trips to Long Canyon since then (the last trip was in 2006), But I've never gotten more than halfway up Long Canyon. There is just too much to explore, its a giant playground full of climbing, route-finding, swimming, archeology, arches, fascinating geology...and no people. At least thats been my experience, surprising for a place so close to the highway. But then again the popular sections are up and downcanyon from Long...the Black Hole of White Canyon, Cheesebox, and Natural Bridges NM further up near the headwater of White Canyon.

Everyone I have introduced to this canyon has fallen in love. A friend of mine from Denver started making it his annual Thanksgiving backpack trip. A good friend from Kentucky who ran the Outdoor Program at Eastern Kentucky University liked it so much he took a group there 2 years in a row for their spring break outing, driving out in a van with kids that have never seen the canyon country. He taught them Leave No Trace principles in the desert, they did some rope work and most importantly planted a desert seed...every one of them left the trip in complete awe. Now that same friend, and his wife, Jason and Jenn Burton, work at Zion NP. They are now officially desert rats, and if you frequent Zion you have probably seen them around and talked to them. Long Canyon is still one of their all time favorites.

I still plan on doing the Long/Gravel Canyon loop, I've read it can be done without ropes, just lots of route-finding and good old canyon scrambling in and out of the canyons. I've always had water, might be an issue in the hottest part of the summer but I wouldn't want to be anywhere near here...except for maybe the Black Hole of White. Access is easy from the Gravel Crossing in White Canyon just down from Gravel Canyon, its about 3 miles down White to Long. I've heard there is a faster way parking closer to Long and scarmbling down, but I've always gone in at the crossing. Once I hiked in by following the track that heads up to Jacobs Chair, cutting northwest near the base of the Moenkopi and dropped in on an old cattle trail, which goes under a small arch en route to Long Canyon above a dryfall.

All my trips have been with a basecamp, the north-side tributaries are worth exploring and there are numerous fun routes in and out of the canyon. The following pics are not the best quality, I didn't have a great camera back then but i tried to make up for it by taking a few thousand shots...



Sometimes you have clear water runnning down White Canyon...


Sometimes you don't...


White Canyon


The Eastern Kentucky Outdoor Program crew making their way down White Canyon en route to Long Canyon...


Great camping not far from the confluence with White. This is just below the dryfall, skirt it on the left...


Once past the dryfall the canyon completely changes character...


Long Canyon is doggie approved...


Jason Burton photo...


Great camping...note the tent center left...
















Lots of surprises here, most of it you won't find in any guidebooks...


This one is still out there...hopefully it stays that way...











Lots more pics here...
https://picasaweb.google.com/105768283703063059928/LongWhiteCanyon#

Featured image for home page:
slide.jpg
 

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,927
Nice.......... Loop similar to part of your route has been on my list for a while.
 

TannerT

Hike Hard, Tread Lightly
Joined
May 15, 2013
Messages
589
Those photos are great! Thanks for the TR. Cedar Mesa is huge and I love that such a jewel remains relatively untarnished and left alone. I obviously need to do more down that way. I just got back from the North Wash area, next time I'm just going to keep on driving to Long Canyon. Thanks!
 

intuitive cat

Jurassic Dust in my Bones
Joined
Mar 9, 2012
Messages
402
i tend to camp at the gravel canyon road often when i head in that direction and have been wanting to explore the area more. thanks for sharing. ideas are brewing!
 

alene

Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Messages
42
White canyon has been something I wanted to do forever, great pics, and thanks for all the route info. I love the reflection picture.
 

Artemus

I walk
.
Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
4,414
I too liked the reflection shot AND also the cactus in the pod. Thanks for the TR BJett!
 

Michael

Alien from over the pond...
Joined
Sep 5, 2012
Messages
1,010
..very impressive TR and shots.
White Canyon is very scenic and a great playground.
 

gnwatts

Member
.
Joined
May 19, 2012
Messages
1,858
Beautiful shots.The cactus in the rock photo is very cool.
 
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
Mike Jones Week Long backpacking, Zion or Grand Canyon? Need Suggestions Trip Planning 27
IntrepidXJ Long Weekend in Chaco Canyon Hiking & Camping 8
IntrepidXJ Long Fingers Canyon Hiking & Camping 1
kwc A futile attempt at The Long Trail Vermont Backpacking 4
westy Hammock Gear Economy Burrow 20° long wide zippered Gear Market: Buy, Sell, Trade 0
zionsky TR: A long weekend in Baxter Backpacking 7
fossana Delano Peak the long way (Tushar Mountains, UT) Hiking & Camping 14
C plans for long day hikes in Yellowstone Trip Planning 2
conorfell Long time CO River lover ready to consummate union with packraft Noobs: Introduce yourself! 1
TractorDoc Long Time Lurker, First Time Poster. Noobs: Introduce yourself! 10
Yvonne A long weekend in Tucson, April 2017 Everything Else 10
Yvonne Testing the limits: A long day of hiking in Hawai’i Volcanoes NP Hiking & Camping 12
Nick So long, Barke Diem On The Water 9
Nethos Long time NYC lurker Noobs: Introduce yourself! 4
SKLund How Big a Pack for Long Trips Gear 32
balzaccom How long is your list? General Discussion 1
uintahiker Requiem for 2015. So long old buddy. General Discussion 2
12trysomething VIDEO: Long Trail - Part 3 Backpacking 0
12trysomething VIDEO: Long Trail - Part 2 Backpacking 1
Nanda Long Road Trip/Fly Fishing Invite Meet Up (Members Only) 0
12trysomething VIDEO: Long Trail Part 1 Backpacking 3
Spencer Sutherland Long Sleeping Bag Gear 7
Matt Price A remote week-long trip, Late-may/Early June, Utah or the Southwest Trip Planning 34
Dave Long Lake, October 4-5 2014 Backpacking 7
Scott Chandler A Long Weekend in Glacier NP- Part 2 Backpacking 5
Scott Chandler Long Weekend in Glacier- Part 1 Backpacking 6
Scott Chandler Summer in the CPW- A long weekend in SLC Backpacking 5
Ralph Perry I am a long-time backpacker needing UINTA suggestions Noobs: Introduce yourself! 1
Bob Teton Highline Trail - The long way Backpacking 22
Nick Food management on long distance trips General Discussion 4
Nick Long-range bucket list General Discussion 23
IntrepidXJ Invite Long Shot: San Juan Overnighter Meet Up (Members Only) 32
Nick Long distance backpacking Trip Planning 4
Deadeye008 Gear Review Big Agnes Insulated Air Core Pad - Long/Wide Gear Reviews 4
Deadeye008 Gear Review Big Agnes Sand Mountain Insulated Pad - Mummy - Long Gear Reviews 0
OwenM Hiking Horse Canyon? Trip Planning 2
TrailScot Lake Powell and the 'return' of Glen Canyon General Discussion 1
scatman Foothill Follies Part 2 - Black Mountain Ridge and City Creek Canyon Loop - November 11, 2021 Hiking & Camping 6
TrailScot Step Canyon access to Grand Gulch, Cedar Mesa Trip Planning 7
chandlerwest Bryce Canyon - Under The Rim Trail Hiking & Camping 0
RyanP Coyote Gulch to Halls Creek via Steven's Canyon and the Baker Route (car/key swap) Meet Up (Members Only) 5
Jazerrad Parunweap Canyon / The Barracks (Utah) Trip Planning 4
stretch Grand Canyon Loop: Thunder River -> Tapeats -> Kanab -> Sowats Backpacking 10
B In Government Trail and out Water Canyon Trip Planning 3
balzaccom Grand Canyon of the Tuolumne Backpacking 2
X Poison Spring Canyon / Black Jump Fall 2021 Trip Planning 2
kansas Good map of Grand Canyon-Parashant National Monument? Trip Planning 3
balzaccom Buckeye Canyon thunderstorms Backpacking 0
balzaccom Kings Canyon NP Day Hikes Hiking & Camping 3
J Death Valley Natl. Pk: Funeral Pk, Slit Canyon, and Big Dune. Dec 21-22, 2020 Hiking & Camping 1

Similar threads

Don't like ads? Become a BCP Supporting Member and kiss them all goodbye. Click here for more info.

Top