ENGLESTEAD HOLLOW CANYON, ZION NATIONAL PARK, UTAH

October 18, 2016

Mike Green iabout to drop into  Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
Englestead Hollow Canyon is a Zion classic with its 290ft entrance drop and a straightforward stroll through some nice canyon passage that spills into Orderville canyon.   this route is a 4AIII because of the 290ft entrance drop but pretty straightforward after the first drop. 

Lindsay on the first drop into Englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah
I met up with Mike Green and his fiancé Lindsay Hansen on their weeklong vacation trip to Zion National Park. Laura could not make it so the night before, the three of us stayed at the Ponderosa ranch and I got the worst sleep due to some kind of generator oscillating noise throughout the night.  There was a point where I did fall asleep and a second or two later, it was 6:30am and time to get everything set up for the day.
Mike Green entering Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
We packed everything up and headed out to the Trailhead of Englestead Canyon while the sun started to peak over the ponderosa Pine ridge at around 7000ft of elevation.   It was a bit cold out but as soon as the sun peaked through the pine needles, the heat started to rise quickly. 

Mike Green entering Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
Soon after scrambling down an obvious trail and following a wash that apparently has been travelled quite a bit, the crack into the earth known as Englestead Hollow Canyon started to emerge.

Mike and Lindsay at the bottom of the first drop in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
It was quite impressive as most entry point canyons are in Zion, but this canyon offers a bit more of a ride on 330ft of rope to get down into the canyon.
Mike Green in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
I like to look at it as a right of passage and a good introduction to the big 300ft+ drops that are starting to emerge out in the Western United States. Yet this ride is in a park that is starting to be overrun by mountainous numbers of tourists and people from all over the world, sort of like Disneyworld......complete with a trolley, and you have to bring your own equipment to enjoy the rides.  Sarcastic as it may sound,  it appears that Zion is turning into quite the world attraction as it is a beautiful place overrun by tourists.
Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
Back at the canyon, We rig to the right and rope up into a face level webbing anchor with 330ft of rope.  We found that this drop is a total of 290ft. so the 330ft. of cancord 9mm rope was the perfect rope to use.
Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah
Mike drops into the canyon first and Lindsay goes down after mike so I can get some photos of them going down the drop.
Mike at the top of the second drop with Lindsay at the bottom in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah

I got on rope and brought all of the pull cord with me so we could have a nice pull being LMAR. On the way down I noticed a few rap stations where people could set up hanging belay stations (if needed) but at around 200-220ft, there is a large ledge with another rap station that would allow for a nice rig point to the bottom of the canyon.
Mike Dropping down deeper into Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
Once at the bottom we pulled the rope and continued to head down canyon with a rapid fire sequence of rappels that we encountered along the way.  Mike has the 45L Rodcle pack and I was impressed with the build and the design of this backpack.  One of the key differences between this pack and other canyon packs on the market is that it stays wide open when it is put on the ground which allows easy access for packing the rope into pack itself other than the pack flopping over or concaving on itself, consequently having someone hold it open.

Lindsay coming down a drop in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.

The canyon walls were pretty impressive as the corridor leading down to Orderville Canyon had a twilight effect at the bottom with hints of a firey color fading into the upper reaches of the smooth cut slot canyon.
Lindsay rocking the Rodcle pack in  Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
The 290ft entrance drop was the most impressive out of all of the drops in Englestead.  After the 290, there was a 40 footer through a keyed in rock which was interesting, than a tiered drop that came out to be around 160ft in total length.


Lindsay at the bottom of the first sequence in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
We had a 330ft rope and we just barely had enough rope to double up and pull the 330 down. 
Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
Once we came down the first sequence, the canyon opened up a bit to the fall colors and the leaves changing which was a nice variation to the towering walls of reds and oranges.
Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
Zion in the fall is a great time to visit and I think that since it is ideal weather conditions, dry, and the leaves are changing, makes this national park a great time of the year for a visit.
Mike and Lindsay in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.
After hiking through the canyon for a bit, to our surprise, the canyon closed up again and got narrow with a few more drop of less than 50ft for each drop.

Mike Green with a Rodcle pack in Englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah
The drops themselves were a bit awkward at times but overall straightforward and easy to work around.
Mike Green and Lindsay Hansen in Englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah
Once we worked through a few of these drops and through a small natural arch, we dropped into orderville canyon just in time for lunch.
Mike and Lindsay in Englestead Canyon. Zion National Park, Utah.

Reflecting on what we just did, Englestead was a nice ride through Zion's canyon country but the long walk out of the narrows is now about to begin.
Mike Raping down englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah

This is going to take some time to get out of so we packed everything away and started to head out of the canyon.
Mike Raping down englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah

Orderville canyon had some interesting narrow sections and a couple small drops to negotiate around but once the walls started to tower over 1000ft up, the water started to show up and we had to take a couple plunges in the 50 degree water to continue out into the narrows.
Mike at the bottom of a natural arch in Englestead Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah

Eventually we made it close to the narrows as the crowds started to appear and eventually we walked up to another river flowing downstream called the virgin river that feeds into the worldly known narrows.
Orderville Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah

The narrows were slammed with people in a parade of sorts that slowed down the hike out yet taking a bit more difficult and ultimately quicker route around the march of people proved to allow us to pass them and make it out of the narrows in time to catch the shuttle back to my car. Englestead is a canyon I recommend for people with experience canyoneering and for people used to high exposures but it is a straightforward route into some great Zion canyon countryland.  
Orderville Canyon, Zion National Park, Utah


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