LENGTH: 8-10 hours (about 12 miles)
GEAR: Wetsuit, 15 m ( 50 ft. ) rope, Harness
WATER: Much in Lower Orderville
SEASON: Late Spring, Summer, Fall
Orderville is second only to the Narrows in my mind as far as adventurous and stunning canyon hikes in Zion. Though the upper 1/2 of this hike is open, and can be hot and dry, the second half is deep, dark, and sublime in its beauty. Its charm is not without obstacles, however, as cold water and a few drops add some spice to the day.
Many people do Orderville without a wetsuit. I cannot stress enough the value of a wetsuit in all but the very hottest (100+ degree) weather, and even then, you will be cold without one. The canyon is much more enjoyable when your not shivering and hurrying through it. My first time through in 2003, we didn't get to the water until late in the day... a cool fall day I might add. It was one of the coldest trips I've ever done.
Many people also do Orderville with no technical gear. There are several short drops that require high skill to negotiate safely. A 15 m ( 50 ft. ) rope and rappelling gear are required, though experienced hikers and canyoneers can get by with just the rope by hand-lining down the short drops and spotting each other on the down climbs.