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Mind Bender - Free Air Grande Finale

Mind Bender

Robbers Roost
Technical Canyoneering

          With a name like Mind Bender who can resist this enticing slot canyon? The canyon gained notoriety when it was dramatically mentioned in a popular guidebook. The technically challenging canyon is located in the western outlaw country once frequented by Butch Cassidy and the Wild Bunch.

Circle of Friends:
          Mind Bender is part of the "Circle of Friends" program. Members of the "Circle of Friends" have access to more specific information, explicit route information, GPS waypoints, trailhead location and detailed maps.  If you would like more information on joining the "Circle of Friends" visit the sign up page.

"Circle of Friends"

Julie Wallace at the First Rappel 8' downclimb to ledge, exit stage left.

General Information:
          Mind Bender is a remarkable slot canyon with an assortment of downclimbing. This canyon requires complete technical gear. The canyon is accessible year round unless there is snow on the ground.

          Total time required form trailhead to trailhead is 6 to 7 hours. A GPS is useful, good map reading skills are essential. Mind Bender is rated 3A III using the Canyon Rating System. This canyon has a moderate flashflood danger.

          There are no bolted anchors in this canyon, let's preserve this feature. Many canyoneers before you have descended this canyon without placing bolts, so please play fair. You might need to locate and construct natural anchors, which should be considered part of the charm.

Interesting Subway Section Julie Wallace at Exit Rappel

Trailhead Information:
          The trailhead is located in the infamous Robbers Roost area and is usually accessible to carefully driven passenger vehicles. A vehicle shuttle is not required to complete this route. Primative camping is available near the trailhead.

Giles Wallace - Major Hang Time Pool & Spring in Mind Bender

What's In A Name:
          How did Mind Bender get it's name? The following excerpt is from Steve Allen's excellent guidebook 'Canyoneering 2: Technical Loop Hikes in Southern Utah'.

          "By the time we reached the crux section of the canyon, we had been enveloped by a blizzard; the snow that whipped through the canyon stung our eyes and froze our hands. The crux was truly a mind bender; the narrow slot gave way to an abrupt drop over the 155-foot-high mouth of a huge cave. We spent an hour rigging our ropes. With no secure anchor points, we ended up burying a sling under a pile of rocks at the bottom of a large pothole and attaching the rope to it."

          "I went first, carefully sliding out of the slot and into a vertical void, the floor of the canyon invisible in the swirl of snow. Would the rope be long enough? The question was answered when I was halfway down: the rope was long enough but my trajectory would have taken me through the limbs of an oak tree and into a large pool. Not good! With some gentle swinging I managed to hit a dry landing zone. Ginger took her time lowering packs over the fifteen-story drop. From below I saw that the brunt of the storm had descended on her. The rock was now plastered with rime ice and, perilously perched on the edge of the abyss, every move on her part had to be carefully executed. A mistake could have meant the ultimate splat. At long last I saw Ginger's legs emerge from the slot; she slowly spun down the rope, afraid a sudden jerk would dislodge it from its precarious anchor. There were no further obstacles below. The Mind Bender Fork was a done deal."

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Copyright 2000-, Shane Burrows