RATING: 4A (B if going down Orderville)
LENGTH: 8-10+ hours
GEAR: Standard Technical Gear
RAPPELS: 4+ to 90 m ( 296 ft. )
WATER: Little in Englestead, much in lower Orderville
SEASON: Late Spring, Summer, Fall
Englestead has one of the most dramatic starts of any canyon in Zion. It goes from an open, shallow canyon to a slot in one spectacular 300' drop! I first did the canyon in 2003, and over the years had forgotten the details, except that first rappel. When I went back and re-visited it in 2012, the first rappel was indeed as spectacular as I had remembered. The rest of the canyon is good as well, and offers two choices of exits: a spectacular, but longer exit out the bottom of Orderville, or a shorter, less good exit up Orderville.
If doing the preferred route down Orderville, a wet suit is advised in all but the hottest times of the year. Lower Orderville has a lot of wading and generally a few short swims. It can be very cold in spring and fall!
Note: The first rappel has been the scene of several accidents and near misses. This is not a beginner canyon. All members of your group need to be highly skilled for the big rappel. It CAN be broken up into 3 rappels (30m, 60m, and 18m), but is better done in one long drop. If doing it as several shorter rappels, a group size of 3 or less is required, as the stances at the anchors are very small.
The big rappel also tends to burn a lot of time for groups. If your group size is more than 3, beware going down Orderville may make for a very long day. A group or 2-3 can likely go out the bottom of Orderville in 8-10 hours, but larger groups may take much longer. Consider the shorter route up Orderville if you group is large or less skilled.