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Backpacking in Utah: Gear and other q's
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Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Coyote Gulch on 05/07/2012 12:51:28 MDT Print View

Brad, I've backpacked Coyote Gulch.

> There are two main campsites and both have composting Clivus Multrum type toilets nearby. The first is the fantastic, giant "covered" bend in the stream. (The resident ravens WILL wake you early in the morning.) The second is the long rockshelter ledge campsite. At that site you can take a day hike to the spectacular arches and junction of Coyote Gulch with the river.

> Get good water from "seeps" on the canyon walls near both campsites and other places along the hike.

> DO take shoes that drain well as 3/4 of your walk will be IN the stream.

> With tents having ground level netting (like my TT Moment) windy conditions drive fine dust inside the tent covering everything. Nothing to do but shake it all out in the morning.

> Store food in hang bags to deter ring-tailed cats (like skinny racoons)

>Do NOT try to cache food for your return trip. Animals absolutely will find it and eat it.

> Be sure to get permits before you go. They can be had at the BLM ofices or in town. No cost but necessary.

Edited by Danepacker on 05/07/2012 12:54:06 MDT.

Brendan S
(brendans) - MLife

Locale: Fruita CO
Dark Canyon on 05/07/2012 13:06:21 MDT Print View

For Dark Canyon, I recommend not doing the woodenshoe/peavine loop despite it being the most popular loop . If you really want a loop, go down Sundance and do a Youngs/Lean To loop. Or just go down Sundance and explore down to the river and up as far as you want to go (definitely check out Youngs). The best section is between the Colorado and Youngs. There's running water year-round til around Black Steer Canyon.

Youngs/Lean To loop trip report here

Search bogley for more info. Pick up Allen's Canyoneering 2 for route in/out of youngs/lean-to.

Needles can be hot and dry by the end of May. Check the forecast. You might be better off in the other areas you've mentioned.

Edited by brendans on 05/07/2012 13:07:54 MDT.

Brad Abrahams
Re: Dark Canyon on 05/07/2012 20:38:00 MDT Print View

Thanks for the recommendation Brendan. Any reason why not to do woodenshoe/peavine? Is it just less impressive and more crowded?

Youngs/Lean To seems a bit more advanced, and longer in duration. This trip will be my first time backpacking in this type of environ.. so i dont want to overdo it.

Have you done this loop? Do you know the mileage?

Thanks again,

sean neves
(Seanneves) - M

Locale: City of Salt
Go grab a 1/100k BLM map of your choice in Southern Utah, close your eyes and put your finger down. on 05/13/2012 10:23:32 MDT Print View

There will be some sort of epic adventure within 5 miles. You can not go wrong. Some great discussion here. A few things about walking around out here:

1) Footwear. I have hiked for years down there with Chacos. Avoid big heavy boots. Trail runners are great.

2) Clothing. Full coverage and light is the key, unless you like being smothered for days in Deet and sun goop. Wide brim hat is almost required. Permithrin has changed everything for me.

3) Check the forecasts. Stay out of narrow canyons (or be very careful) if it's supposed to rain in your chosen river basin, not just where you are. I have been snowed on in June in southern Utah, but May is just great down there generally. Monsoon season usually kicks in at the end of June, but T-storms can happen any time. You have not seen anything in this world until you see (feel) a major flash flood roll by. Very humbling.

4) Vehicle. Know that many remote areas, including in the parks, require high clearance vehicles and a means of extraction. 4x4 makes me feel better. If you are renting, I would stay out of the Maze, Kaiparowitz Plateau, etc.

5) Water. Use local knowledge of sources. Year to year, water sources vary wildly. Talk to rangers, hikers as you pass, etc. If in doubt, have extra carrying capacity. I have been known to carry a collapsible 5 gallon container if I'm really out there.

Enjoy! You are welcome to PM me (I'm in SLC) and talk about specific areas.

Brad Abrahams
Re: Go grab a 1/100k BLM map of your choice in Southern Utah, close your eyes and put your finger down. on 07/03/2012 19:13:35 MDT Print View

I survived and thrived. Trip report here: