Cistern and Ramp Canyons |

San Rafael Swell

Canyoneering Cistern and Ramp Canyons - San Rafael Swell Canyoneering Cistern and Ramp Canyons
San Rafael Swell

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TICKS & TODOS: 12 Todo Lists / 2 Ticks
LENGTH: 4-6 Hours
GEAR: 15 m rope for belays, Moderate navigation-a GPS is useful
RAPPELS: 0, but one short section of 5th class climbing ( 6 m ( 20 ft. ) )
WATER: Normally one or two small pools, usually avoidable.
SEASON: Fall, Winter, or Spring. Hot in the summer.
Sat Hi:68 Lo:43 Sun Hi:70 Lo:45 Mon Hi:59 Lo:46 Tue Hi:65 Lo:43 Wed Hi:66 Lo:45
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The Cistern and Ramp Canyons loop is one of the San Rafael Swell classics. The route visits two very different canyons. Cistern Canyon is easy walking and fairly wide while Ramp contains several obstacles, and some amazingly well-sculpted canyon floors and solutions pocketed walls. The hike along the reef connecting the two is the icing on the cake, giving great views of this unique landscape.

Ascending Ramp Canyon comes with a price. The crux obstacle requires unprotected lower 5th class climbing. Although not hard (5.2 - 5.5 depending on who's rating it), it is somewhat exposed (6 m / 20 ft) and can be a little intimidating to some. Beginners will need competent leadership and a rope.For those not wishing to lead the climbing section, it is only about a 30­-45 minute side trip to fix a rope before starting the hike.

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