San Rafael Swell March 2009

Tyler

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Joined
Jan 18, 2012
Messages
464
Day 1

So, this was to be our first official camping trip of the year. We typically get out camping around Bill's birthday, but this was our own trip and we could not coordinate our schedules to be there when Bill was going (which is the following weekend). We brought my brother's Russ, Jeff, and Billy. We had planned to do some hikes that we thought they would enjoy (Goblin Valley and Little Wild Horse Canyon) and hoped to get in a hike of something we had never done (Crack Canyon) but our plans were altered by an un-happy baby and the worst sand storm I've ever seen at the Swell.

All in all we had a great time. We got to do some rapelling and my brothers got to see a part of Utah that we really love.

We left SLC around 2:30pm, meeting up with Jeff and Billy in Springville and leaving there around 3:30pm. We had a few stops along the way because Bailey was NOT happy sitting in the car that long. Also, Jeff was the un-lucky sucker to get pulled over along the infamous Wellington town along Hwy 6. He and I were both doing 60 coming into town and slowing down when we saw the 40 mph sign, but the cop decided to pull him over anyway. Pretty lame if you ask me, but that hole in the wall has to get some money in their budget somehow.

We arrived to the Temple Mtn junction around 7pm and drove to the campsite we love in the North Temple wash. Low and behold it was empty (we've lucked out the last 3 times we've tried to camp there with it being empty). I think it's one of the best campsites in the Swell because you're tucked right up against the reef with easy reef-scrambling right out of your campsite to get some great views of the area. Plus it's pretty central to both the southern and northern parts of the reef.

We set up camp and set up a small little rappel for Caiden to test out. The incline was not fully vertical, so it was a good one for him to practice on:





It was close to dinner time, so Bailey was first to eat





We had a little breezy night around the campfire, but dinner was good and we just kind of chilled for a bit.



Bailey was so cute, hanging out with her Uncle Russ





She was really good around the campfire. Just stared at the fire and chilled and eventually fell asleep in my arms



She looked as if she was going to sleep "like a baby", but that didn't go so well...



Bailey was up literally every 30 minutes, with Alene rocking her back to sleep. Very hard to "rock" a baby back to sleep in a tent. I felt so bad for her.
Day 2
So, after a horrible nights sleep (well, mine wasn't as bad, plus whenever I was sleeping I was snoring so loud it would wake up my brothers in their tent 40' away from us), we got up and found it to be pretty cold. That gave us motivation to scale the reef behind our campsite to see if there was a viable anchor on top to tie off my climbing rope to do some rappelling later in the day after our hikes.
Alene stayed in the tent to stay warm with Bailey. Jeff, Billy, Caiden, and I headed up to the top of the reef to inspect. We found a GREAT group of LARGE rocks to anchor off of. We worked our day back down the reef, made breakfast, then dinged around teaching Billy how to rappel off a smaller wall (about 15'-20' tall). Caiden did really well again.




https://flic.kr/p/3396908053 We then headed out for our two hikes. We first stopped by Goblin Valley state park. That place gets more and more packed with visitors every year. It didn't help that we were there on a Saturday.
I'm not going to list all of the pictures we took, but here is a link to them (along with past times we've gone). The first 13 of them were from this trip.

Goblin Valley

The brotha's

Me and Bailey

Alene and Caiden riding the camel

Russ, riding what I like to call "turtle rock"

Flexing my toothpicks

Jeff aka "the karate kid"

After Goblin Valley, we headed on over to Little Wild Horse canyon, which is probably the most famous slot canyon to visit for the "average" person. The hike was great, but I'll say this: NEVER GO TO THIS CANYON ON A SATURDAY. We used to be able to go here on a saturday and maybe run into a dozen people, if we were lucky. This day we easily passed over 100 people in the canyon. LOT'S of Boy Scouts too.
Again, I won't post all of these pictures (I took most of my pictures here), so I'll post the link to the photos and a few of my favorites. Again, the first 40 pictures in this set were from this trip, the others beyond that were from previous trips

Little Wild Horse Canyon

Me and my brothers on the trail into LWH

Alene and Bailey made it through a pretty tight squeeze


Footage of walking through a slot
https://flic.kr/p/3397730504 Posing at the large choke stone in the slot

Inside the ribs of the beast

We stopped a couple of miles in to each lunch, then turned around and went back out.




Me and Alene

Bailey was so happy to be leaving

We got back to the campsite and by then Alene and I had to decide if we could go through another night with Bailey. We decided it was best that Alene go to Green River, get a hotel and hopefully she and Bailey can get a good nights sleep. I was sad to see her go because I know Alene wanted to be here. However, it was probably best (I'll explain why on Day 3).
For the rest of the day we ended up anchoring my 90m rope to a couple of large rocks that were big enough for me, Russ, and Jeff to hang from the rope, so we figured we would be safe. We're not experts, but it was fun rappelling this large cliff behind us. It wasn't 100% vertical in all places, but still fun to do.
Here are is the link to our rappelling and some of the pictures and video clips:
Rappelling
Alene waiting her turn while Bailey hams it up for the camera

Russ' first attempt


https://flic.kr/p/3397760554 Jeff's first attempt
https://flic.kr/p/3397771178
https://flic.kr/p/3397805712 Billy's first attempt


Alene's attempt (she bolted after this for Green River)

https://flic.kr/p/3400805314 My first attempt. This section was easier compared to what we did the next day (a little more vertical)


Caiden did a few rappel's later that night too

https://flic.kr/p/3397030263 Later that night we just ate dinner and chilled around the fire until it was time to doze off. Jeff and I attempted to take some night time pictures. Jeff's were much better.
My shot of the moon (too shaky, even on a tripod, but I think it has to do with the focus)

Jeff's shot of the moon through his telescope

Jeff's tent with the stars behind it (I'm posting the large version to show the details)

Day 3
I actually slept better than I've slept in a LONG time. I woke up a few times out of habit from Bailey waking up, but man, it felt great. I noticed during the night the breeze was picking up and by morning it was really blowing hard. We made our breakfast (which took a long time to burn since the wind was really blowing our burner around), packed up our stuff and did some more rappelling before leaving our campsite.
Here are more rappels from this day. This section of the cliff was much more vertical and easier to do since you didn't have to navigate your feet over a crack.
My first attempt of this section




https://flic.kr/p/3397953268 Jeff's rappel
https://flic.kr/p/3397927758 Billy's rappel
https://flic.kr/p/3397995246 Caiden's last rappel of the day as I gathered the longer rope



After breaking down our ropes, it was getting really dusty/windy, but I wanted to show my brothers more of the swell, so we drove up North Temple wash close to Temple mountain to show them some old miners cabins and and old abandoned chevy.
Inside the miners cabin

The old Chevy



On our way back out of the wash, you can see how bad the dust storm is (this is looking East, through the reef)

We decided to do a little target practice too


On our way out the dust was REALLY bad east of the reef. This is looking eastward from the mouth of North Temple wash

This is looking North at the reef

From the temple mtn road, this is looking south toward goblin valley

A group of cows huddled together. I'm sure they were thinking the cow gods were not looking on them fondly that day

https://flic.kr/p/3397201009 It really was a fun trip. I'm bummed we didn't do Crack Canyon, but you never know with clouds and dust, what kind of weather you're going to get, so we high-tailed it out of there. I wish I lived closer to the swell and we could get there easier.
 

Yvonne

I lava it!!!
Joined
Jan 19, 2012
Messages
3,645
wow, great trip with a lot of fun.
Too bad that your little one didn't like to sleep.
Anyway, it was a great weekend. I really like the Swell a lot and hopefully I can get back sooner or later.
 

Tyler

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Joined
Jan 18, 2012
Messages
464
wow, great trip with a lot of fun.
Too bad that your little one didn't like to sleep.
Anyway, it was a great weekend. I really like the Swell a lot and hopefully I can get back sooner or later.

Thanks. She's 3 years old now and LOVES camping (sleeps through the night now). Not sure how our newborn is going to do as he'll be a bit younger than she was when he first camps, but he already sleeps so much better than she did, even at home.
 
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
J Bunch O' N. San Rafael Swell summit scrambles April 10-12, 2021 (now w/rock art) Hiking & Camping 3
fossana San Rafael Swell MTB and salvaged packraft weekend Everything Else 13
Stephanie B Old Woman Wash, Three Finger Petroglyphs, and Wild Horse Canyon (Backcountry Fest in the San Rafael Swell) Hiking & Camping 6
Mikjik86 Video Hiking/Camping San Rafael Swell/Goblin Valley/Horseshoe Canyon - Feb 2019 Hiking & Camping 2
J San Rafael Swell Wilderness Designations General Discussion 13
Nick Invite Backcountry Fest! - April 5-7, 2019, San Rafael Swell Meet Up (Members Only) 274
Jackson Jurassic National Monument and San Rafael Swell Conservation Area General Discussion 9
TrektheWorld The San Rafael Sure is.....Swell Hiking & Camping 1
fiber Invite Late March 3-4 day San Rafael Swell Backpacking Loop Meet Up (Members Only) 1
Devin Ashby Nate’s Canyon/ Spring Canyon San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 2
S Moab/San Rafael Swell Trip advice-family Trip Planning 6
Artemus Help Requested - Conserving the San Rafael Swell Wilderness - Interested? General Discussion 16
SwimsWithTrout Best time of year for San Rafael Swell/Cedar Mesa ? Trip Planning 4
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell: South Fork Eagle Canyon Off Road 2
Artemus Conserving the San Rafael Swell - Interested? General Discussion 13
IntrepidXJ Legislative resolution: Drilling is ‘best use’ for Cedar Mesa and San Rafael Swell General Discussion 13
kansas Sunsets in the San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 13
kansas Hunting in San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 2
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell - Cane Wash Off Road 4
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell - Swaseys Leap (2006) Hiking & Camping 3
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell - The Western Slope - Slaughter Slopes Off Road 4
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell - The Western Slope and Lone Tree Wedge Off Road 0
hatchcanyon San Rafael Swell - The Western Slope and Mesa Butte Off Road 2
steve Invite San Rafael Swell River Float - dates TBD depending on water levels Meet Up (Members Only) 73
K This weekend: San Rafael Swell or Moab? Trip Planning 4
steve San Rafael Swell Quickie Off Road 8
PureLightImages Daughter's First Campout - San Rafael Swell Hiking & Camping 5
Dave Ding & Dang Canyons, San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 0
Udink Sid's Mountain, San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 0
PureLightImages Horsethief & Grotto - San Rafael Swell - 10.19.2012 Hiking & Camping 5
Nick Southern Baptist Canyon, San Rafael Swell Canyoneering 13
Nick Lower Black Box, San Rafael Swell Canyoneering 15
Go-deep San Rafael Swell and the Chute of Muddy Creek Trip Planning 3
HomerJ San Rafael Swell - April 2012 Hiking & Camping 14
Nick Chimney Canyon, San Rafael Swell Trip Planning 20
Tyler San Rafael Swell: Ding Canyon, upper Eardley Canyon, Arch Canyon Hiking & Camping 0
Tyler San Rafael Swell - Crack Canyon, Skylight Arch, Hiking & Camping 6
Tyler San Rafael Swell 3 days early March 2010 Hiking & Camping 2
J Moving down to Southern San Rafael Reef Wilderness for two more loop hikes April 13-14 2021 Hiking & Camping 1
J San Rafael Reef Wilderness. Rambling on the Reef March 30-31, 2021 Hiking & Camping 1
Jackson Return to the San Rafael River Gorge Backpacking 17
George_Washington_Hayduke Packrafting and Bikepacking from the San Rafael River to Muddy Creek On The Water 0
Jackson San Rafael River Backpacking 7
Udink San Rafael Fall 2015 Hiking & Camping 4
P Noob looking for solitary beauty in canyon lands, san rafael, escalante Noobs: Introduce yourself! 2
kansas San Rafael Reef Trip Planning 2
steve San Rafael River Float On The Water 5
Udink San Rafael Reef Hiking & Camping 2
Udink San Rafael Spring 2014 Hiking & Camping 11
Scott Chandler Easter Weekend Day 3: The Upper San Rafael Hiking & Camping 2

Similar threads

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

Top