Canyonlands: Tales from Narrow Places

Lemonade in Lemon Canyon

Posted in Northern Arizona & the Mogollon Rim by canyoneering on September 22, 2009

Lemonade in Lemons Canyon

Lemonade in Lemon Canyon, 2BIII, (not to be confused w/ Lemmon Canyon in Southern Arizona)
6 miles
Coconino National Forest, tributary West Clear Creek
09/21/09

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It is early in the morning and I am driving up to the rim to meet my good buddy. Earlier in the season he had been scouting out a canyon and was stopped at a 100-foot fall. He was pretty certain this was not the only drop. There were no signs of bolts, webbing or any kind of anchor set up; a possible un-descended canyon. With 400 feet of rope and lots of hardware we were going to see what we would find. About 30 minutes from our rendezvous point I took a glance at my cell phone and saw I had an unread text message. I opened and it read, “Dude I am sick as shit, something I ate. Not going to make it, dammit.” It was sent hours earlier. Already over an hour from home my mind began racing to come up with an alternative. There was no way I was going to do a potential first descent solo, particularly when I had not done the original recon.

This same good buddy had also told me about another nearby canyon that he had descended sans rope with some exposed down climbs. I decided to go for it. The canyon was not particularly spectacular: a few shallow pools, some pseudo-narrows and two not very difficult but rather exposed down climbs. You know the saying, “When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemonade,” so for the purposes of this blog let’s call this unnamed canyon “Lemon Canyon” not to be confused with Lemmon Canyon in the Santa Catalina Mountains near Tucson. That lemonade was actually pretty tasty as I was treated to observing two owls (I believe spotted owls) in the canyon. I spent about 15 minutes with the owls as we studied each other. The lemonade continued its sweet refreshment on an exciting and somewhat sketchy climb out of the canyon. Near the top of the hike out I was treated to a large mushroom shaped rock that loomed over the canyon.

-David

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One Response

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  1. mike said, on September 29, 2009 at 11:36 pm

    You should call it Magic Mystery Mushroom canyon. and someone should find a canyon in Mt. Lemmon and call it Lemmonade canyon. Now make with the Imlay Canyon photos.


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