Buckeyes Canyon |

Eastern Reef

Canyoneering Buckeyes Canyon - Eastern Reef Canyoneering Buckeyes Canyon
Eastern Reef

Overview | Getting There | Route | Photos | Maps | Comments

Overview

RATING: 4A/B
LENGTH: 6-8 hours

Wed

66 | 37

Thu

56 | 33

Fri

60 | 30

Sat

64 | 32

Sun

61 | 34

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SEASON: Spring, Summer, Fall
GEAR: Standard Technical Gear, Fiddlestick, Sandtrap
RAPPELS: 10+ to 55 m ( 181 ft. )
WATER: Some wading and a possible deep wade or two. Wetsuit if very cool or cold conditions.
FLASHFLOOD: High

Wed

66 | 37

Thu

56 | 33

Fri

60 | 30

Sat

64 | 32

Sun

61 | 34

View Full Weather Details
The eastern reef on the approach

The eastern reef on the approach

The eastern reef, near where I-70 enters the San Rafael Swell from the east, is one of the most dramatic parts of the Swell to visit. The Navajo and Wingate uplift is dramatic from a distance, and even more so up close. Buckeyes Canyon is one of those rare canyons that descends from the top of the reef. In its short, but steep descent, it passes through the Wingate and Navajo layers in a series of 10 rappels. En route, it also passes through several unnamed natural bridges and gives a rare view of Tip Top Arch. One of the more beautiful canyons I've done in the Swell recently.

Many thanks to Bob Allan ( www.smilingcricket.com ) and group for the invite to join them.

Note/Warning: Buckeyes Canyon, for its length, packs a wallop. With magnificent scenery, many rappels, and some tricky anchor building. The canyon is an excellent adventure for advanced canyoneers comfortable with their anchor skills.

Our time was about 8 hours and 20 minutes, with a long lunch break moving at a leisurely pace. If you are comfortable with the fiddlestick and natural anchors, 6-8 hours is a reasonable pace. Due to the complexity of some of the natural anchors, advanced anchor skills required. We used mostly a Fiddlestick, with a couple of Sandtraps thrown in for good measure.

TO MINIMIZE DAMAGE, DO NOT SLING, FIDDLESTICK, OR PULL ROPES OVER ANY OF THE NATURAL BRIDGES! THEY WILL QUICKLY GROOVE!! Sandtrap and fiddlestick rule the day, and can be used to minimize damage. In some instances, leaving a sling may be the best option.
One of the natural bridges you rappel through.

One of the natural bridges you rappel through.

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