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The Narrows

posted Nov 10, 2017, 4:35 PM by Justin P
Tuesday, for Halloween, we headed to the Zion Narrows.  After breakfast at the hotel, we drove to the Zion National Park visitor center and took the shuttle all the way to the last stop at Temple of Sinawava.  From here, we hiked the one mile Riverside Walk into the canyon.  Where the trail ended, we waded into the water and continued following Virgin River upstream.  Starting out there were two girls also heading up the Narrows, but we didn't really see anyone else besides the occasional backpacker heading out of the canyon.  There were some beautiful hanging gardens growing out of the sheer cliff walls.  In about a half mile, we came to Mystery Canyon Falls.  The water level was pretty low, but it was still quite scenic, especially with the fall foliage.  Continuing on, there were some dry areas and we got well ahead of the two girls and pretty much had the canyon to ourselves for a while.  In a little ways we came to an area with some huge boulders that we had to climb over.  The fall color in this section was just gorgeous.  I wa surprised by how colorful it was here in Zion.  A little ways past here, there was a split and we went right to head up Orderville Canyon.  We could go about a half mile up this canyon without a permit.  The water level was much lower in Orderville than in Zion, but there were several tricky spots.  Almost immediately, we had to climb up a small waterfall.  It was then flat for a bit before we came to a more difficult challenge.  The pool if water was deep and the waterfall too high to climb.  Instead, we had to scale up a rock face.  Fortunately, sandstone is very rough and we had good traction.  A little ways further, we got to a point where we couldn't figure out how to go further without ropes and turned around.  The previous falls was really difficult getting back down, but it was just a short ways past to return to Virgin River, where we continued upstream in the Narrows.  By this time, a lot more people had entered the canyon, though few ventured up Orderville.  The next section of the Narrows was Wall Street, a section where the river narrowed and the canyon walls went straight up.  The next landmark was Floating Rock, a huge boulder that bisects the river in two streams.  Many people had stopped here.  Sandy and I went a little further until near the end of Wall Street and stopped at a dry spot to eat lunch.  After lunch, we started making our way back.  The going was definitely faster going with the flow of the river.  It was also a lot more crowded on the way back - I was glad we had started early.  Back at Temple of Sinawava, we caught the shuttle back to the visitor center and headed back to our hotel to change out of the dry suit pants.  Then we went to Zion Adventure Company to return our gear and meet up with our tour guide for the following day.  We chatted with Bill for about thirty minutes, going over gear and getting to know each other.  Since it was just the two of us, we decided to meet up and leave the office at 730 the following morning.  Afterwards, Sandy and I went to Jacks Sports Grill for dinner and drinks and then went to bed early since we had a busy day coming up.