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Re: Trip reports for Lava down West rim?

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  • Joe Braun
    Ben -- Looking at the NPS website (to make sure that I update my own website with current information), it became all to apparent to me that the NPS website is
    Message 1 of 9 , Apr 1, 2013
      Ben -- Looking at the NPS website (to make sure that I update my own website with current information), it became all to apparent to me that the NPS website is not updated very often. Their best info is found on their Facebook page! I guess that's a sign of the times.

      OT Canyon Overlook Parking lot: I'm not sure what you mean, but the parking lot south of the road across from the ranger booth with the toilet IS the Canyon Overlook parking lot. It was open when I was there in Nov, but it's been reconfigured. Traffic coming from the tunnel can turn right into it, but traffic going west into the tunnel is not allowed to turn left into it to park. (Apparently, some traffic study determined that this was a dangerous spot while others would argue that there was never an accident related to people turning left.) There is also an overflow lot on the north side just down the road (by Shelf Canyon), but this whole area is a traffic nightmare during the height of tourist season. Last time I did Pine Creek, I was lucky to have my wife drop me off near the parking lot vs. trying to find a spot anywhere near there. -Joe


      --- In Zion_National_Park_Hiking@yahoogroups.com, "mojave_ben" <mojave_ben@...> wrote:
      >
      > I use YakTrax a bunch and they have pretty good traction, but I would worry about stepping out of them in a critical location because they have no strap over the boot, just stretchy rubber holding them on. They are small and light and fine in a place without much exposure, but if you've ever been on a icy slope and stepped out of a crampon... you know what I mean.
      >
      > Joe, where did you find that info about snow conditions on the park web site? I couldn't find it.
      >
      > And, OT, what is the parking setup on the west side of the large tunnel these days? There is a parking area with a toilet on the south side across from the little ranger guard house, but I sort of recall it being closed, so people going down Pine Creek would have to park at the Canyon Overlook trailhead?
      >
      >
      > --- In Zion_National_Park_Hiking@yahoogroups.com, "Joe Braun" <joe@> wrote:
      > >
      > > No problem; I deleted the duplicates, I figured it was some sort of glitch or mistake.
      > >
      > > Yes, MicroSpikes are the ones with the red bands. I swear by them. I do a lot of winter hiking on ice in the Great Lakes where there are all sorts of irregular and bizarre ice formations, and even on wet ice on a 45-degree slope, MicroSpikes claw in and give you 100% confidence in your traction.
      > >
      > > I don't have any experience with YakTrax, but looking at them, they make me a little nervous... the springlike wire wrapped around rubber just doesn't seem to have as much grip. They may be okay, but I really like traction with teeth. (The simple teeth on most snowshoes are also really good.)
      > >
      > >
      > > --- In Zion_National_Park_Hiking@yahoogroups.com, "jim.grob" <jkbogrob@> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > Thanks Joe.....and my apologies to everyone for the repeat messages (my screen was telling me the posting was timing out).
      > > >
      > > > As regards spikes I have yak trax.........would those more skookum spikes with the red band be more in line for those spots???
      > > >
      > > > I talked to the zion shuttle folks today and they echoed what the park said for depths. They also rent those red band ones.
      > > >
      > >
      >
    • mojave_ben
      Ah the joys of damned social media . OK I guess I have to look for them on FB. You answered my question about parking. It s sort of stupid. There is a
      Message 2 of 9 , Apr 1, 2013
        Ah the joys of damned "social media". OK I guess I have to look for them on FB.

        You answered my question about parking. It's sort of stupid. There is a small lot, with painted spaces, on the north side just before the tunnel, and it's clearly connected to the Canyon Overlook trail by a walkway with a fence. So I guess if you come from the east you park there to go down Pine Creek, walk to the ranger booth, and cross the road there.

        Sure seemed safe to me to take that left into the little area when the tunnel had the normal big pause in traffic, and then be able to pull out easily to go back east, as opposed to having to cross traffic going west AND find a gap in traffic going east from the other area on the north side but whatever. I would have been most annoyed if coming from the east to come up to the tunnel entrance bridge and find I could not turn left into the parking area but had to go through the tunnel instead! That's why I decided to ask, thanks.

        Going out in a few weeks and lining up the options, depending on weather of course.
      • RAM
        I think this bodes well for the narrows to be open early and classics like the Full Left Fork and Das Boot into the Subway will be in condition sometime in
        Message 3 of 9 , Apr 3, 2013
          I think this bodes well for the narrows to be open early and classics like the Full Left Fork and Das Boot into the Subway will be in condition sometime in April. They usually leave the road from the ranger station to the West Rim trail head closed waaaaay longer than seems necessary, but the hike from the Lava Campground down to the road and beyond is shorter and prettier than the full road walk. I bet that the Right Fork is fully melted out. It's only a matter of getting there!
          Ram

          --- In Zion_National_Park_Hiking@yahoogroups.com, "Joe Braun" <joe@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hi Jim -- NPS put out this report on March 26: "The Kolob Terrace Road is now snow-free and passable for two-wheel-drive vehicles through the park. Beyond the park boundary, the road is snow and ice covered. The road to Lava Point and the West Rim Trailhead remains closed. Our rangers estimate there are still about six inches to a foot of snow at Lava Point (about 8,000 feet above sea level)."
          >
          > A lot will happen between now and your trip with much or most of the snow melting, but my big concern is always the possibility of ice in the exposed sections of trail as the West Rim makes its big final descent into the main canyon. There are several shaded corners that tend to keep snow longer then the rest of the trail. Check conditions at the backcountry desk. I always carry my microspikes with me if I have any doubts.
          >
          > --- In Zion_National_Park_Hiking@yahoogroups.com, "jim.grob" <jkbogrob@> wrote:
          > >
          > > Any reports from hikers on snow/ice conditions and safety (yak trax sufficient?) when hiking, and snow level and water availability around Potato Hollow campsites much appreciated....headed to do hike April 10th.
          > >
          >
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