Your Safety

Section 2

I will state this again and again throughout this website, there are three canyoneering rules:

  1. Your Safety, along with everyone else!

  2. Have an awesome time!

  3. The rules are followed in that EXACT order!

Image Credit: gettyimages.com

Please read through the site to see what Canyoneering Gear is absolutely essentially and how they can keep you safe.  In addition, you and your party should please develop the appropriate canyoneering skills before you descend your first canyon, as this will aid in your groups safety and chances of success.

If you are going on your first canyoneering adventure, please go with someone who has experience!  Don't go by yourself.  Even seasoned canyoneers do not encourage or go on solo-canyoneering adventures.  

Watching the weather (read Section 4) is also a crucial part of your safety, and is the core element of what shaped these canyons.  Think of quite literally as canyons being the "sewers" of the land when it rains.  The rain lands on the desert and wants to travel to the lowest section (which is known as the "watercourse") .  These canyons vary in sizes and depths, and all of that water goes "somewhere".  That "somewhere" is where you will be treading through.

Image Credit: gettyimages.com

Unfortunately, accidents do happen in this sport. "If we do not learn from our past, we are doomed to repeat it", as the saying goes.  Most of the time, these accidents could have been prevented if more planning, memorization of knots, and redundancy was done or added. 

Do not let the following links scare you into doing the sport altogether.  What it SHOULD do is provide you with a little apprehension so that you can plan better and more thoroughly, invite specific friends and family who can match the canyon description and who also have the endurance for them, in addition to arming yourself with knowledge of how to tie specific knots, and how to react in emergencies when someone is on rappel and can't proceed further.

Here are just a few website links that reference these fatalities or accidents:

"I can't believe I survived; video of flash flood crashing down on canyoneers" from StGeorgeUtah.com

"Kolob Canyon Disaster" from Climb-Utah.com

"Flash Flood in the Black Hole" from Climb-Utah.com

"Flash Flood in Little Wild Horse Canyon" from Climb-Utah.com

"Special Report: The Keyhole 7" from OutsideOnline.com

"Surviving a Flash Flood in a Slot Canyon" from OutsideOnline.com

The following website created by Bob Allan (aka "Slot Machine") and is a list of canyoneering-related fatalities:  https://www.smilingcricket.com/2019/04/the-death-thread.html

Please learn from their mistakes, otherwise we are doomed to repeat them.

Image Credit: Brett Johnson (C)

© 2020 Brett Johnson. Canyoneering101.com