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Giles Wallace and Jeff Meierhofer in Imlay Canyon in Zion National Park.

Imlay Canyon
Sneak & Peak

Zion National Park
Technical Canyoneering

          Imlay Canyon is considered one of the true classics for good reason, the canyon is a difficult, dangerous, physically demanding and technically challenging. The beauty of this canyon is spectacular; the narrows are extremely long, dramatic, unrelenting and hazardous. The Sneak and Peek route described below cherry picks the best part of the canyon. Kind of like getting laid without getting married. This route is sometimes referred to as "The Short Cut".

          Imlay Canyon offers its charm at a high price. The route is difficult and should be considered for advanced and highly skilled canyoneers only. Descent requires icy cold swimming and a multitude of rappels. The biggest hazard in Imlay are the "keeper potholes" that require hooking to exit. The keeper potholes could prove deadly for the unskilled and unprepared.

Circle of Friends:
          Imlay Canyon 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"

Simultaneous Rappel into Pool in Imlay Canyon. Imlay Canyon

Warning:
          Every member of your group must be a skilled canyoneer. This canyon could be deadly for beginners, even with advanced leadership. Do not underestimate the difficulty of descending this canyon. Give the keeper potholes serious consideration, they can be lethal. A rescue in this canyon would be dangerous and extremely difficult.

          Imlay Canyon using the "Sneak and Peek" route is rated 4B R IV using the Canyon Rating System. This canyon has an extreme flash flood danger, check the local weather report before entering this canyon.

Eric Mouffe and Tom Talboys in Imlay. Tom Talboys at the final rappel.

General Information:
          Imlay Canyon is a technical canyoneering adventure and requires a Zion backcountry permit to descend. Imlay Canyon requires complete technical gear. Navigation for this route is moderately difficult. A GPS is useful. Good map reading skills are essential. Any error in navigating this route could have serious consequences.

Giles Wallace and Jeff Meierhofer swimming through scum. Looking down on the Zion Narrows

Trailhead Information:
          This route is accessible to any vehicle in any weather conditions. A vehicle shuttle is not required.

Related Link:
German Tourists - Where did you come from?


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