The Black Hole is a fantastic canyon to spend hot summer days in. Lots of swimming, climbing, scrambling, stemming, down climbing, and for those inclined there could be a couple of rappels. The Black Hole is a canyon we have had permits to guide in since the beginning, but one that we don't advertise other than by word of mouth. The Black Hole is a quirky canyon. It is rated on the low end for its Technical aspects and yet it requires a huge amount of effort to get through. This low rating creates the illusion that it is an easy canyon, this is not the case. It creates the illusion that it is a much safer canyon because the Technical rating is low. This is far from the case. There are more call outs for Search and Rescue to this canyon than any other canyon in the local county. Much of this is due probably from the fact that the rating makes it appear to be much easier than it is and groups go in unprepared for what they actually encounter.
These reasons above are the major determining factors in our decision to not publicly advertise this trip along with our other canyon offerings. The topography of The Black Hole makes it more likely to have problems with flash flooding during rain storms. The drainage system that The Black Hole sits in gathers water from countless numbers of other drainage's and mesas in the Cedar Mesa area. This creates a time frame of 3+ months that this canyon is not safe to be in. (Monsoon season runs from July - September). The low Technical rating also creates instances where hikers enter the canyon with nothing more than a bottle of water. This canyon does require you to be prepared for the elements that Canyoneering may throw at you. Cold water, drop offs, steep ascents out, Lots and Lots of swimming, low light, long hours, exhaustion etc.
The pay off to being able to mitigate the problems is a gorgeous canyon experience. The Black Hole is one of the most treasured canyon gems in the are. The sculpting walls that have been carved out of the sandstone by centuries of water flow are simply breath taking. The light columns penetrating through the dark canyon walls and bouncing off the water appear to be taken out of a dream like sequence from Hollywood. This canyon is a gem to behold when it is treated with the respect it garners and precautions are made to get you through it safely.
Contact North Wash Outfitters for information on whether trips may be planned through The Black Hole. The canyon is a full day trip departing from Blanding Utah.
Cost for participation is $200 per person for 1-2 clients and $175 per person for 3+ clients.