Chris’ Guide To Canyoneering

Get your descender ready

Since you’re here, you likely already know a bit (or a lot) about canyoneering. The breadth and depth of the canyoneering knowledge base is huge! If you feel intimidated by pothole escapes or building deadmen anchors, this guide is for you.

 I’ve seen too many canyon parties descending canyons unprepared, unsafely, and unethically, and I want to help change that. 

This guide is here to help you be more prepared for your next canyon adventure. I will teach you all the skills, knowledge, and motivation you need to get you off the couch and on rappel in your next canyon.

The guide is under development, so check back often as we add additional content.

Canyoneering Basics

I often hear people ask, what canyoneering is. Think back to your days as a kid running around the playground trying to get from one side to the other without touching the ground – climbing up slides, swinging across monkey bars, and balancing on narrow and shaky chains. It may have been a few years since you squished into the twisty slide, but you’re never too old for playgrounds because canyoneering is the grownup version of a playground. 

In the most basic terms, canyoneering is descending through a canyon. Most sought-out canyons are narrow slot canyons and are often very technical in nature requiring rappelling, swimming, climbing over, under, around, and down all kinds of obstacles. Most of the canyons I’ve had the pleasure of descending are in the Southwest United States, but there are canyons all around the world in all kinds of climates. 

Recent Articles on Canyoneering

Additional canyoneering resources I use all the time

CUSA logo

Canyoneering USA is a great resource for anyone wanting to get into Canyoneering, especially in Zion National Park. Tom Jones is one of the grandfathers of the canyoneering community and a great wealth of wisdom.

road trip ryan logo

Road Trip Ryan is a fabulous resource for canyon beta. Ryan Cornia is adding more canyons (and other adventures) all the time. If you want to get more details you have to join the mailing list, but it’s worth it.

Bluugnome logo is a great resource for beta, maps, and technical info. They also have a store to buy some gear.

canyon collective logo

Canyon Collective is a forum site where canyoneers can share trip reports, discuss technical skills, and generally geek out about canyoneering.

ACA logo

The American Canyoneering Association This site is run by Rich Carlson – the father of modern canyoneering.  The ACA provides certification courses in canyoneering for all levels. They also schedule rendezvous and other events.

candition logo is a valuable resource for planning a trip. You can get recent canyon conditions and share your own observations for others.

dye clan logo is a site run by Jeremy Dye with a bunch of technical tips, skills, and some beta.

canyons and crags

Canyons & Crags is another Rich Carlson site. You can read about his adventures here as well as sign up for training courses, or read the knowledge base.

Useful Canyoneering Products

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