A challenging techncial slot canyon descent in the Lake Powell area
Mount Ellsworth (8,235 ft) as seen from Ticaboo Mesa. We're starting to prepare for long day of canyoneering.
View southeast from Ticaboo Mesa. Lake Powell can be seen in the distance behind a slickrock wonderland.
Roger admires the view towards Lake Powell from Ticaboo Mesa.
Ram leads the descent from Ticaboo Mesa.
The crew (Aron, Roger, CP, Ram, Dominic and Steve) on the descent.
Soon after dropping into Paradiso, one of a group of five slot canyons that make up what has come to be known as the Dante System, we were confronted with a small, relatively benign silo. Here, Aron is finishing up the sequence which involves wide stemming and bridging over about an 8 foot drop. A nice warmup.
CP and Ram chatting in Paradiso.
Dominic making a short rappel from a human anchor.
CP starting the short rappel.
Roger decides to show off his climbing skills and downclimbs the short drop instead of rappelling. A handline is in place in case he gets nervous.
Ram volunteers to go last and downclimbs this section cleanly.
Aron and Dominic stem along the narrow-bottomed canyon.
The canyon deepens and Aron and Dominic squeeze their way down inside.
Roger and Ram squeeze down inside the canyon.
A very memorable obstacle early on in Paradiso. Looking down from the top of this 20 foot verticle v-slot was intimidating and I didn't think there was any way I was getting down it without a rope. Ram taught me how to "ride the elevator" and coached me down in a "controlled fall" of sorts. I did as he said and DING, I was on the ground! I soon learned this was a necessary skill that I could take advantage of over and over again.
Roger begins one of the many downclimbs in Paradiso, this one involving a large chockstone.
Roger tackling a small downclimbing problem.
Dominic high above the narrow canyon floor. Often travel up high was the only reasonable means of passage.
Dominic negotiates another short downclimb as Roger watches.
Canyoneering veterans usually have a bunny strap rigged so they can drag their pack underneath them in narrow sections of the canyon.
Dominic squeezing through a slanted section of canyon.
Ram stemming along above the canyon floor. In some places slipping down would mean becoming seriously stuck.
Ram stemming around some features in the narrow slot. This gets quite strenuous at times.
Ram stemming high above the canyon floor.
Ram and Steve take a breather in a nicely lit area of Paradiso.
Dominic frictioning his way down a chute.
CP finishing up the first part of Paradiso. Here the canyon briefly widens before slotting up again.
Steve starting the second portion of Paradiso. Notice the beautuful ripples in the sandstone here.
Steve assissting CP as he rappels over and across a deep pothole.
Ram making another short rappel off yet another human anchor. Roger volunteered to go last here and skillfully downclimbed the seemingly featureless rock.
Near the end of the canyon we had to climb over a wide pothole filled with nasty water. It was so wide that when I bridged over it my feet and head were at nearly the same level and I was staring face down into the pool. It got my heart pumping!
Pool of green slime below the pothole. Getting around it on the slick mud was amusing.
Ram and Steve scrambling through the beautfully sculpted canyon.