Last Candition: June 25, 2011


5 out of 5
Date of Trip: October 18, 2017

Pretty cruiser, couple of semi keepers. Didn't hook out of anything. 2 pack tosses on keepers did the trick. Replaced the final rap anchors. Mostly full. 3 people. 2 of us were more than happy with our 4/3 wetsuits, my wife used and extra layer of Neo and was slightly chilled towards the end. Up down route from

Car to final rap stations in 12 hours. Spent some extra time there rigging new anchors and what not. First time through for all 3 of us. Great day!

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: October 1, 2017

First time through for us through mostly full I am guessing. Had about four keepers we did pack tosses for. Nothing really too hard to get out of. Just long and cold. Had dry suits but still where chilly.

Last rappers were awesome. All anchors seemed good.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: September 2, 2017

5 of us (TS, CB, AI, JW & SM) completed Heaps on Sept. 02. 4:00 AM departure from WRT and suiting up prior to 9:00. Phantom Narrows had 2 or 3 potholes that were in keeper mode that partner assists were necessary. 1 additional pothole required a rope (bag) throw to deploy a handline. The last pothole prior to 90 deg right-hand turn (upper narrows) required a body bridge to traverse across vs. landing in the 8-10' pothole and climb out. Once stemmed over we used a meat anchor for to counterweight and 2:1 lift. Lower narrows (post crossroads) required 1 or 2 partner assists as well, just prior to the Iron Room and immediately prior to the Green Room raps contained keepers that required pack toss or partner assist. 12 hours from WRT to removing wetsuits prior to last sequence. 14 hours on the ground back to the car. A bit different than late July where everything was full and far more jumping options. Most wore 5mm wetsuits and were comfortable.

3 out of 5
Date of Trip: June 10, 2017

Maybe 13hrs from Lava Point to Shuttle at a very slow pace, took a few long breaks for food and water. Pretty full and cold, some effort required to escape small lips on many potholes but no pack tosses or partner assists necessary.

We wore from 4/3 up to 7mm. A few of us got fairly chilled with only 4/3, but not enough to actually pull more neo out of our packs.

One of our party hauled a snake through most of the third narrows until we found her a nice sandy area. She was also quite cold.

Anchors were generally in good shape.

There's a fixed rope at the first drop into Phantom Valley that should be hauled out, maybe someone hiking the West Rim Trail?

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: September 3, 2016

All potholes were completely full. It looked like the canyon flowed on 9/2. There was a trickle of water flowing from the end. 4/3 wetsuit was a little chilly, 5mm recommended. Anchors in good shape.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: August 24, 2016

Everything full, day the fire shut it down. Bolts and webbing good. Left grotto at 0330 and got back at 1115 to go for imlay. 5/3 wetsuit was fine

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: August 20, 2016

Full full full from recent monsoon activity. Water somewhat warmer than usual, at least at the start. Lots of sand still in the canyon, especially at the start of the Final Narrows. Despite the water, no particularly long swims. About as easy as Heaps gets.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: July 9, 2016

Water levels were about 3/4 making some potholes a laborious solo exit. Partner assist on a handful and pack-toss on about 2,3 ones. No log soups, but plenty of climbing high over logs jammed in narrow sections.

Webbing was OK on all anchors. Some in the middle section will need replacement after a couple of more flash-floods.

Team wore 4/3 wetsuits and we only got cold in the last section of narrows.

Anchors are in good shape in the last 3 rap exit sequence.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: May 21, 2016

Left grotto at 7 am touched down at the E. Pools at 3:30 pm. No difficult exits, no hooking. Passed a group of 3 on Rap 2 off ridge. They said their 200 foot rope was not long enough and had to ascend? ? We scampered down ridge to other alternative Rap 2. 120 feet to huge tree on steep slope then traversed over to main decent. My Suunto watch said water temp 43 degrees. Feet a little cold near the end but overall very warm and pleasant with 5/4 suit with extra 5 mm vest and hood. Neoprene socks under trail runners worked great.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: September 20, 2015

Canyon was full to the brim after flash flooding that had happened earlier in the week. Beached whale escapes for all pots - nothing very challenging. Quicksand everywhere - added to the fun - several spots where we'd step in and be up to our knees in quicksand instantly. Camped at the crossroads on wet sand - a bit miserable with temps in the high 30's / low 40's overnight. Water felt nice - I wore 3/2 full with a 2/1 shorty layered on top - never got cold. We had a buddy at emerald pools who brought a 300 foot rope and we attached it to some pull cords. Highly recommend stashing rope / having friend at end - made the experience much more enjoyable than lugging 300 footer through canyon. Will try Heaps direct route next time instead of bird perch.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: August 1, 2015

Potholes still full. Beached-whale exited just about everything. 14 hours from West Rim to Zion shuttle. Went with 3/2 wetsuits + 1 mm rash guard. A little chilly. First time using neoprene gloves, which are genius. Beautiful canyon.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: July 25, 2015

Diddo on the previous report. Still full of water, no keepers. The webbing on one or two anchors could be replaced soon.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: July 21, 2015

Heaps flashed on the evening of July 20, right before we went down. Every single pothole was full, there was even a slight flow through the canyon (leftover from the night before), so everything was tip top full. 0 keeper problems, we swam right out of everything. Water was fairly warm too, 55 degrees according to a little thermometer. We all had 6mm core and 3mm limb coverage on our wetsuits and were warm the whole day. It was my first descent down Heaps, but it seemed like several of the log jams had webbing that washed out. We downclimbed all of them, but I'd be prepared to sling some of those. Great trip. We took it easy and got through in 15 hours. West Rim/Phantom Valley Approach.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: June 18, 2015

Phantom Valley approach. The potholes are still pretty close to full. One pothole at the very end of the first set of narrows is fairly difficult to get out of, but you could stem/rappel over it with a little stretch. The potholes in the final set of narrows are still fully underwater. There were a few anchors that should be replaced somewhat soon.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: June 6, 2015

Wow! This was our first time through Heaps Canyon. Our team of 4 started at Lava Point and we took the West Rim trail and descended into Phantom Valley. Webbing coming into Phantom Valley showing some wear. We decided to camp close to the start of the first narrows - amazing campsite in the sand with plenty of good water. We woke up at 5 the next day and went through the first and second sets of narrows pretty quickly - all pots currently full of water. Our team had 5/4, 4/3 and layered 3/2 + 2/1 shorty wetsuits - felt good.

Third set of narrows was definitely colder, longer, and darker - a blast. Some of us starting to feel a little chilly by the end, but definitely not cold. Started to rain moderately hard while in end of third narrows (0% chance rain in NPS forecast, thanks Obama! :-) ), but no flow - just some elevated nerves. Final rap sequence amazing - rap stations all in great shape. Last of us touched down at Emerald Pools around 7 PM making for a fun 12-hour day.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: May 29, 2015

Tippy-top full and lots of fun. No pothole escape challenges. This was the first time through for all in our party of 3. We hit the trail at Lava Point at 4:00 AM and got on the ground at Emerald Pools sometime before dark. We carried a 300', 200', 100', and a 60' which worked well enough. If we'd had more time I would have liked to replace some webbing a few places but the anchors were good enough.

I measured the water temperature at 45 degrees near the end of the first narrows. The water felt significantly colder in the narrows after the crossroads but I didn't stop to measure it. We were warm enough in layered wetsuits (4mm full + 3/2 shorty, 4.5/3.5 full + 2.5 vest, 4/3 full + 2/1 shorty john), 5mm booties, and neoprene gloves (chosen wisely, YMMV, some neo gloves are dangerously hard to rap with and some just aren't warm).

There was an abundance of quicksand.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: March 28, 2015

We did the grotto approach, there is no snow on the approach or in the canyon. We swam over all pot holes. We worn 7/8 mm semidry wetsuits and stayed warm throughout. The sand throughout the canyon was very waterlogged acting like quicksand kind of a pain to walk through during certain stretches. Overall great conditions for being so early in spring.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: October 30, 2014

Heaps canyon in the fall was by far the best time to do the canyon. Total time 10.5hrs from lava point with 3 people. Water temp was in the mid 40's and I counted 19 potholes with 12 being close to keepers. We had to do one pack toss and a few partner assists. The leaves from the trees have fallen into the last narrows and it's absolutely stunning. I replaced a couple of slings that were in dire condition so they should be good for the winter... If anyone really does this in the winter of be nervous. The canyon is always changing even from 2 months ago when I did it. The amount of wood seems to have gone down but the large logjams are quite a handful. Some are a good 15-20 climb. Take a camera, drysuit, and snow gear to wear under the drysuit. Also, whoever the ass was that left a pile of wood AND a woodpile set up for a fire right after the final narrows shame.. Serious?! All in a a phenomenal trip in my favorite canyon.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: June 27, 2014

This was our first time doing Heaps. The approach was long and hot. We filled up our water at West Rim Springs, which had a small flow.

We felt like the first two sections of narrows had quite a few challenging pot holes. We had to do partner assists, makeshift pack tosses (we didn't have a pot shot and wished we did), hooking, etc. We also had quite a few beached whale experiences.

We camped near the crossroads right before rappel 11 on the sand. The third narrows started out dry but quickly got into long cold swims. We didn't have as many pot hole problems the second day but still had plenty of ones that could be problems with different water levels. There was some nasty log soup we had to go through in one section.

We had one person in 2 mm wet suit and he was always cold. 5 mm seemed to be about right, with neoprene socks and gloves.

5 out of 5
Date of Trip: June 14, 2014

Heaps is in great shape. Tricky escape from the toilet bowl if you blow the stem and drop in it. Other than that, just swimming and a couple beached whales. Anchors are mostly good, although the webbing on a couple of them (like the first rap) is starting to look a little crusty.

Looks like someone put some bolts on the partner assist/downclimb in the last section but then someone else pulled them. No rope for the chimney upclimb at then end.

Water was COLD. I wore a 3/2 with a 2mm vest and stayed pretty warm. Half of us had neoprene gloves and the other half didn't. The half that did was very happy to have them.