Thursday, May 17, 2012

Day 12: the Narrows @ Zion are AWEsome + me & shoes

<p>Last time I was at Zion in early May 2008 I couldn't walk up the Narrows because the flow was too high/swift. You see "The Narrows" isn't a trail; it's walking up the the Virgin river where the canyon walls close in to anywhere between 10 and 50 feet and the walls zoom mostly strait up more than 1000ft in some places.</p>
<p>In early spring, those doing the trip wear wetsuits or dry suits because the water is about 50 degrees. Right now it can be done without body insulation but neoprene socks are reccomended</p>
<p>Now, this I all knew before departing the Bay Area. What I did not read carefully enough on the NPS website is that sports sandals are not appropriate footwear. I should have intuited this since the bottom of the river and most of banks are rocky, not silty.<br>
So when leaving the Bay Area I left two decent, but semi-disposable, pairs of boots in storage ( I did not want to use my hiking boots as this excursion would ruin them or leave them wet for several days).<br>
In L.A. with the rents,&nbsp; I finally read the NPS site thoroughly and decided to buy some used boots. Internet &amp; Yelp to the rescue, 50 min later im back at Ma's with a pair of $25 Bat Chucks boots that are a scotch too large as to acccomodate the rental socks.<br>
I then call Zion Adventure outfitters to reserve renting the neoprene socks. Lo and behold, if I had read *their* website thoroughly I'd have seen that they rent special cayoneering boots for this. Also, I am informed that despite what the website says, and that I *had* just read, they only rent the socks as part of a package with the special boots and a tall walking stick. Bah, I hate planning.
When I show in person on Wednesday morning the very pregnant girl and the blonde pro queen staffing the place say "sure, u can just rent socks"
I got to use my new dedicated water boots, they worked great, the narrows is a must do activity if you're within 100 miles of Zion (and are reasonable fit and can swim)

There are no pictures from me because I didn't take anything electronic due to the swimming and wetness and slipperiness and hard rock. But do look online for vids and pics, it's amazing (so by the power of association,  so am I)

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