Hogwarts Canyon

November 7, 2009

A relaxing mini slot canyon with a few interesting rappels

Petroglyphs at Sandthrax Camp

There are some fantastic petroglyphs on a wall in Sandthrax Camp.

Another petroglyph

Somebody said this one had to do with growing or harvesting.

Climbing petroglyph

This one shows a guy giving his climbing partner a should stand!

Petrified wood

Several large pieces of petrified wood can be found on the approach to Hogwarts with a little looking around.

Merry Piglet

Merry Piglet, another mini slot canyon, can be seen across Highway 95 on the approach to Hogwarts.

Beginning of Hogwarts

CP and Aron gear up at the head of Hogwarts.

Initial drop

We found a pool of water at the base of the first major drop. Rather than rappel into the pool using the infamous and sketchy bush anchor, we cleaned the questionable anchor and rappelled from a newer, sturdy rock anchor on the side of the canyon, avoiding the pool altogether. The new rappel location is just out of sight on the right.

First rappel

Dominic on the first rappel. There is a good rock anchor but the rappel itself is a bit dirty.

CP on rappel

CP easing his way into the rappel. We had to inch our way down while grabbing onto the anchor webbing before beginning the rappel.

First obstacle in Hogwarts

The inital rappel is the first techncial obstacle in Hogwarts. Aron is standing at the top of what used to be the standard rappel point (with a bush for an anchor). We chose to use the alternate rappel point on the side of the canyon because the anchor was much more solid and because we liked the idea of avoiding the pool of water.

Arch rappel

Dominic starting the very cool rappel through an impressive arch!

View from the arch rappel

I took this picture looking down at Dominic partway through the arch rappel.

Looking up through the arch

Dominic gives Aron a firemans belay while he negotiates the somewhat awkward start of the rappel.


Dominic working over an attention-getting silo. There are two choices here: descend into the silo and use pothole escape techniques to get out or do some somewhat exposed stemming to get over the top of it. We all managed to stem over it but it did get my blood pumping.


Aron stemming over a long but narrow stretch of icky water.

CP staying dry

CP working past the stretch of water.

Awkward rappel

CP at the start of a particularly awkward rappel.

Slabby downclimb

Aron and Dominic do a short, slabby downclimb to reach the final mystery anchor.

Preparing the final rappel

Dominic and Aron check the pre-existing anchors and prepare for the final rappel. There is one mystery anchor, a piece of webbing extending from the depths of a pool, and one more confidence inspring anchor above the water.

Aron on the final rappel

Aron starting the final rappel. Highway 95 is in the background.

CP on the final rappel

CP on the final rappel. From here its a very short walk back to he car.

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