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Technical Canyoneering in Northwash, Utah: Hog Canyons

Fri, 2021-10-22
Melanee Hand
Leader Email: 
Are dogs allowed?: 
Not allowed

October is a beautiful and ideal time for canyoneering in the Northwash, Utah area.  The area is popular for technical canyoneering, and remote with no permits required.  You might see canyoneers at the campsites, but seeing anyone in the canyons is rare. There are many opportunities for canyoneering in the Northwash, Utah area by the Hog Springs Rest Area. 

This trip is planned for an extended weekend of 10/22-25, 2021. To maximize our time in the canyons and minimize driving, we propose 1-2 short 3AII canyons per day that are near each other, with convenient car camping at the trailheads.

Maximum capacity for this trip is 7 participants. 

Technical gear is the responsibility of each participant and will be reviewed by the trip leader prior to the trip's onset. The group of participants will share personally-owned canyoneering ropes if none are available through LAM.  Each participant is expected to contribute to the carrying, set up, and take-down of the ropes.  We will use the Muenter-Mule or similar releasable block for all rappels.

The plan is to caravan or drive independently to the Hog Springs rest area on Friday, October 22, 2021.  We will review everyone's gear and supplies prior to leaving on the trip and discuss more detailed logistics for those who participate.  Minimum standard gear includes harness, helmet, canyoneering shoes, whistle, backpack, hydration system, rock climbing grade carabiners, personal anchor, rappel device, VT prusik, 3' sling, quickdraw, leather gloves.  Quick dry clothes are recommended, and keep in mind that the rocks are very abrasive, so a shuffle-butt or scuttle-butt is recommended to protect clothing. Other typical supplies for hiking are also required, including food.

From Los Alamos, google maps estimates a 7.5 hour drive to the rest area.  There are nearby dry camping areas by Hite and the Sandthrax Canyon parking area for tent camping, and modest hotel, restaurant, and grocery accommodations in Hanksville located an additional 40 minutes from the Hog Springs Rest Area. The rest area has a bathroom, is located at the beginning of the trail head for the Hog Canyons and a good place to car/motor home camp. 

Boss Hog (Hog 1) Canyon and Miss Piggy (Hog 4) from Hog 1 is proposed for the first day. More information about these canyons are provided on the Road Trip Ryan website. 

The next day we plan to do Hog 2 and Hogwarts Canyons, which are both 3A canyons. However, there is a keeper pothole with water in it, so you could get wet on Hogwarts. 

I propose we drive to the Hog Springs rest area Friday night and car camp where there is a bathroom and parking lot right off the highway, easy to locate. We should be able to stay camping in the area for 3 nights. I am not aware of any fees to stay there based on previous stays. 

We will convene at the Hog Springs Rest Area on Friday afternoon/evening to discuss plans, preparation, and times/start for the next day.  We will also convene at the rest area at the end of the trip on Saturday to plan for Sunday.

We will drive back individually to Los Alamos Sunday night and/or Monday and check-in with the trip leader when we have arrived safely.


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