Canyonlands: Tales from Narrow Places

The Jug of Salome Creek

Posted in Southern & Central Arizona by canyoneering on May 6, 2009

The Jug of Salome Creek, 3B/CII
5 miles
Tonto National Forest – Salome Wilderness
08/15/07, 04/07/08, 05/04/08, 04/27/09

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The Jug is a classic and a must do adventure for anyone interested in canyoneering. Salome is easy to get to with a passenger car and simple to navigate but beware the mood of the canyon can vastly change depending on the season.

Like true amateurs the first time we descended The Jug was late summer- lets just say the water was green, there were dead things floating in the smelly stagnant water and I ended up getting a tetanus shot after cutting my knee in the middle of the canyon (I still have the scar to prove it). I will also mention that this was our first canyoneering trip ever. It was Mike’s idea. He said we were going for a hike to a swimming hole and there happened to be one rappel…. little did we know we would be forever hooked.

I think this is also a good time to reveal that 1) I had never rappelled before and 2) I am scared of heights. The thought of rappelling was utterly terrifying to me as I stood over the ledge, borderline crying…. Since my first rappel in the Jug I have obviously gained confidence and a multitude of technical skills; I still don’t really like heights but thankfully I have that a little more under control!

David and I have completed The Jug a number of times. Last year David and Mike went for David’s birthday (followed by sake bombers at Ra). We have gone through stinky slimy pools and amazing swift flow. Sometimes we have the place to ourselves and sometimes there is an hour wait at the rappel because there are so many people out there. One time we were waiting for our group’s turn at the rappel and behind us came an entire Boy Scout troop, I was so happy we were in front of them! We have seen dogs in the Jug (no not our dog!) and 5-year-old kids on rappel.

Our most recent trip to Salome was with David’s dad, Lee, and his sister Sarah when they were in town visiting from the East Coast. David’s mom respectfully chose not to come along and spent some quality time with our dog, Briscoe instead. Lee went canyoneering with us over Thanksgiving (along with my father- click here to see that blog post) so he had an idea of what to expect. Sarah on the other hand is a brilliant city girl without a whole lot of outdoor experience. We went on a Monday so we had the whole canyon to ourselves and could really take our time slipping down the natural waterslides and maneuvering around and under waterfalls. Sarah had the biggest grin on her face the whole day; David could not have been more proud and happy to see it!

-Laura

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2 Responses

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  1. […] and sister hiking while they were in town visiting from the East Coast for Thanksgiving (click here and here for previous adventures with David’s family). With each stream crossing Sarah and […]

  2. […] a descent of the Jug of Salome Creek. David and I took David’s sister and father down the Jug last year, so I was looking forward to sharing the experience with my sister. I hold a special place in my […]


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