Canyoneering Route Description

Mis-Me Canyon - 3B III
Zion National Park, Utah.

Quick Facts

09-24-10, 1 person, 1 Day (Travel time in route 9 hours) Pictures Icon

Time Required - 7 to 10 hours
Distance - 10.6 miles Total, 1.3 miles Technical
Rappels - 3 Rappels, Longest Rappel 60 feet.
Elevation Range - 4370 - 6640 Feet
Shuttle Required -No Vehicle - Passenger Permit Required - Yes

Gear Used for Canyon

Rappelling and anchor gear, two 200 foot ropes, 200 pull cord (incase a rope is stuck) and 70 feet of 1” webbing for sling placement. Rappelling and anchor gear, Ropes and or pull cords for rappels up to 60 feet, 30 feet of 1 inch webbing for sling placement.  If you are going during a cooler part of the year you may want to bring a wet suit for the swims in Lower Orderville Canyon during the exit.

General Comments

Mis-Me Canyon itself is a Class A canyon but the route has been given a rating of Class B since it drops into Orderville Canyon for the exit which has water in it.  

Mis-Me Canyon is not a fun route if you are looking for the classic Zion Canyon experience.  But if you are just looking to get away from the crowds for a while and get some canyon time in at the same time this might be a good choice.  The upper half of the canyon has 2 raps and travels down steep loose rock and dirt (not fun in my opinion).  The lower half is more enjoyable with multiple down climbs and a final rappel of about 25 feet.  The lower half of the canyon is also very secluded feeling with some vegetation to add to the scenic value.  Then there is the exit down the lower part of Orderville which is always pretty and enjoyable and the exit down the last bit of the Zion Narrows.  

Note on getting to the correct canyon head:
At times people drop into the wrong canyon while looking for Mystery Canyon.  While looking for Mystery Canyon, some have accidentally dropped into NotMystery Canyon (sometimes called MissMe Wash) which is west of Mystery or have accidentally dropped into Mis-Me Canyon which is east of Mystery.  To be sure you do not drop into the wrong canyon, refer to the notes in the route description.   

Not Mystery (the one west of Mystery) is the only one you definitely do not want to drop into by accident.  Not Mystery has a very large drop or rappel sequence at the end that drops down to the River Walk trail below.  Since it is a popular trail below the lower portion of NotMystery is closed.  Also if you drop into NotMystery by accident you will likely have insufficient rope to get down the last drop anyway.  Doing this has left some parties stranded and requiring rescue.  

When viewed from the head, some of the down canyon walls of NotMystery are higher than you are while looking into it.  This is not the case for both Mystery and Mis-Me Canyons where the down canyon walls are lower than you are while looking into it from the head.  

For more on locating the correct canyon refer to the route description.

Driving Directions

To get to the Trailhead

Park at the Zion Visitor Center and ride the shuttle to the Weeping Rock â€" Observation Point shuttle stop.

To leave the Exit Vehicle / Escape Pod

No exit vehicle is needed.  After exiting at the Temple of Sinawava ride the shuttle back to the Visitor Center.

Maps

GPS coordinate information listed at the bottom.  For information about waypoint naming and map symbols, refer to the Glossary page.

Map Link Icon
Click the links for maps of the route.
Map of the entire route.
Map of the technical section.

Details

The Approach:
From the Weeping Rock shuttle stop get to the trailhead sign for Weeping Rock and Observation Point (tObpntWpRk).  Follow the trail leading toward Observation Point.  The trail here is paved and starts up a series of steep switchbacks.   

About 0.7 miles from the start, you will pass the junction to Hidden Canyon (jHiddenCynBt), stay left and continue toward Observation Point.   About 0.5 miles after passing the junction to Hidden Canyon the trail will level off and turn into a big narrow section, echo canyon.  

After winding through this portion of Echo Canyon for a little over 0.25 miles the trail will start up the left side leaving the canyon floor.  This is where Upper Echo Canyon exits onto the trail (yEcho-MidBt).  About 0.3 miles later will be a trail junction for the East Rim or East Mesa trail (jEastMesaTrl), stay left and continue on the East Mesa trail toward Observation Point.  

Continuing up from the East Mesa Junction toward Observation Point the trail starts up another series of steep switch backs (still paved trail) as it continues toward Observation Point.  There are great views in this area so get a hold of yourself and stop staring at the ground.  After about 1.6 miles the trail will level off a bit at another trail junction (jObservatnPt).

From the trail junction to Observation Point (jObservatnPt), turn right (north east) and follow the East Mesa Trail (not toward Observation Point).  The trail from the junction starts out mostly level then soon starts to climb again.  Shortly after leaving the junction you will be able to see a large canyon on the left (north) which is NotMystery Canyon or sometimes referred to as Miss-Me Wash.  About 600 feet after the Observation Point junction you begin to have views down into NotMystery.  The trail will continue to climb while going around the head of NotMystery. 

Note:
Differentiating Not Mystery Canyon from Mystery Canyon.

NotMystery Canyon can be seen from the trail when you are slightly west of its apex and some of the down canyon walls of NotMystery are notably higher than the trail.  By contrast Mystery is not seen from the trail (you need to walk about 60 to 80 feet north of the trail to see it) and the down canyon walls are all lower than the trail.

Also of note, while going around the head of NotMystery the trail will have some steps in it made from logs placed across the trail and filled in with dirt.  This is good to note to help prevent dropping into NotMystery when you are looking for Mystery.  Approaching from the Weeping Rock trailhead you will need to climb up the trail using these steps and continue along the trail to the next canyon.  If you are approaching from the east side of the park and you find these steps in the trail you will know you have gone too far and passed Mystery Canyon.

Note / Warning!!:
NotMystery Canyon (Miss-Me Wash) is closed since the final rappel sequence drops down over the Zion Narrows River Walk trail.  The lower section of the canyon is closed to keep people on the River Walk trail safe from falling debris.  Some people have mistakenly dropped into NotMystery Canon while thinking they were in Mystery Canyon, which has resulted in emergency rescues.  The final rap sequence in NotMystery is quite long and those prepared for Mystery Canyon do not have the rope length needed to complete final section.  They do not find this out until they have already pulled ropes from previous rappels on their descent.  This leaves them stuck between raps and requiring rescue.  NotMystery is west of Mystery Canyon and should not be confused with Mis-Me Canyon which is a relatively easy canyon and is to the east of Mystery.  Since NotMstery is sometimes referred to as MissMe Wash it is easy to confuse it with Mis-Me Canyon.

About 0.7 miles after the Observation Point junction the trail will top out and level off for a short distance then begin to lose elevation down the other side of the top out.  About 500 to 900 feet after the top out of the trail Mystery Canyon will be on the left (north).  From the trail Mystery Canyon is not readily seen.  You should find a few social trails leaving the main trail and going north over to the head of Mystery (yMysteryTp).

Continuing east, the East Mesa Trail continues to drop elevation only slightly and feels almost level.  The junction to Mis-Me Canyon (jMis-MeCanyon) where you will leave the East Mesa Trail is about 1.0 miles east of the head of Mystery Canyon.  There are no identifying landmarks or items that can be easily described.  Good map reading skills and a watchful eye on travel distance or a GPS are the easiest ways to get to the correct spot.

Note:
If you are close to where you need to be, it will be easy to spot the head of Mis-Me Canyon as you walk off trail towards it.  The spot where you might notice a faint path leading away from the main trail is in a section where the main trail has two worn lines showing it was obviously a road at one time.  The trail on each side of this spot is more of a single track width.  The path leading to the head of the canyon is faint as it leaves the trail since it is not used very much.  If you have chosen the right spot the path leading from the main trail will become much more defined after about 50 feet and will lead right over to the head of the canyon.

Like Mystery Canyon, Mis-Me cannot be seen from the trail.  Walk about 180 feet from the trail to where the path stops at the rim of Mis-Me Canyon (wMis-MeRP-01).  From the head you will be able to see this is also similar to Mystery in that the down canyon walls are lower than the trail not higher.  Where the faint path meets the head are a few spots where people have dropped down into the canyon.  This is not the best spot since it is steeper and will place you over drop you will need to get around.  The best drop in point is to the right (east) of the apex of the canyon.  

The drop in point for Mis-Me (yMis-MeCynTP) is about 200 feet right (east) of the obvious apex of the head.  There is a tree next to the drop in that has been burned and hollowed out on the side facing the canyon.  Some rocks have been placed in the hollowed out side to mark the drop in.

The Canyoneering / Technical Section:
From the drop in point at the head of Mis-Me Canyon (yMis-MeCynTP) start down the very steep loose dirt slope and slowly traverse left (west) over toward the center of the water course.  The slope to the right of the drop in is steeper so traversing left feels like the natural direction to go.  The ground is steep and slipping is almost certain but the ground is soft and forgiving.  

About 250 feet after the leaving the rim you should get to the top of a gully or ravine (wMis-MeRP-02) running down the slope you are on.  The top of this gully is about 250 feet northwest of the drop in point.  

Following the gully down about 200 feet you will pass under a sheer ledge then come to a drop (wMis-MeRP-03) that some have set anchors for to rappel.  If you had dropped in from center of the head of the canyon you would find yourself at the top of the ledge rather than passing under it.  

The drop (wMis-MeRP-03) is down a sloped narrow section.  The slope is easily down climbed but you will need to take it slow and be careful of all the loose rock you are on.  The walls are close enough to help use as holds to get down.  If you are not confident in your down climbing skills you can set up a rappel here.  The anchor here is from a pine tree LDC and the drop would be about 60 feet before it starts to level off.  

Rap 1 (dMis-MeCynR1-2) is another 60 feet down the slope.  Rap 1 is anchored from a large pine tree and drops about 60 feet.  At the bottom of Rap 1 the canyon continues down a steeply sloped dirt floor.  

Rap 2 is a few feet down canyon of rap 1.  Rap 2 drops about 20 feet and has no obvious anchor option.  A crack on the LDC side lends itself as a good place for a knot chalk anchor.  The angle of the crack is not optimal so be sure to test it well before committing to it.  

Down canyon from rap 2 the canyon drops down along a steep slope of loose dirt, rock, tree and log debris and some vegetation to occasionally push through.  Be careful in the canyon of the vines with thorns on them.  They pop up from time to time and can be quite annoying.  

A few hundred feet down canyon is a drop of about 15 feet that looks like it will be difficult to get down.  The drop is actually pretty easy to get down by squeezing down a crack on the RDC side and working under the boulder you were standing on at the top of the drop.  It is a good idea to drop your pack here since wearing it on this down climb can push you out too far and make things unsafe.  

Shortly after the down climb the grade of decent starts to level off a little making travel easier.  Only the notable down climbs are noted in this description.  There are a lot of easy down climbs of 3 to 6 feet along the canyon.  

A few more hundred feet down canyon is another down climb of about 20 feet.  This drop can be down climbed LDC but is not a simple down climb.  The better down climber in the group can provide a meat anchor for everyone then can down climb it last.  

About 50 feet down canyon is another drop of about 10 feet.  It can be stemmed by tall people.  Shorter people will want to set up a hand line or a rap here.  

A short distance down canyon of the 10 foot down climb will be a large sand hill on the RDC wall created from sand running down a crack in the wall and piling up on the canyon floor.  

Further down canyon after the sand hill will be a drop (wMis-MeRP-04) that is easily down climbed along a sloped flute then scramble down a few boulders.  The down climb will place you under a monolithically huge boulder with a sandy floor under it.  This drop should be about 0.4 miles down canyon of rap 2 and about 0.6 miles from the junction with Orderville Canyon.  

Almost 0.25 miles down canyon of is another down climb of about 12 feet that has a lot of tree and log debris making travel difficult for a short distance.  

A short distance later will be a drop of about 20 feet (wMis-MeRP-05) that is easily bypassed by climbing around LDC.  

Next is a boulder field to navigate through and down climb in.  When you see a series of drops that looks like you can’t tell the best way to get down.  Stay RDC and climb down through the boulders with a stem down climb of about 12 feet.  

A few hundred feet down canyon is a narrow section to walk through before getting to rap 3.  

Rap 3 is about 80 feet before reaching the junction with Orderville Canyon.  RDC is anchored LDC from 2 bolted hangers and drops about 25 feet.  There are other anchor options in the area if you decide not to use the anchors.  

From the bottom of rap 3, walk about 80 feet down canyon to the exit of Mis-Me Canyon (yMis-MeeBt) where it joins Orderville Canyon.

The Exit:
From the exit of Mis-Me Canyon (yMis-MeeBt) turn left (west) and start down Orderville Canyon.

About 0.9 miles down canyon of Mis-Me Canyon is Orderville Rap 2 which is about 2.4 miles down canyon of Orderville rap 1. 

Rap 2 in Orderville has a huge (house sized) choke stone overhead that has a tree and bushes growing on it known as The Guillotine.  The rappel drops about 12 feet to a pool below and is anchored from 2 bolted hangers LDC.  This is one of my favorite rappels when the canyon is such that water is flowing over the rappel (which isn't always the case).  It is short but has very high wow factor with the huge rock over head and the pool below.  It is just very pretty.

Down canyon from rap 2 in Orderville the canyon has more and more water.  The further down canyon you go the more the water is flowing.  This is some of the best scenery in Orderville.  There are also more down climbs.  One of the down climbs drops into a pool that requires about a 30 foot swim.

About 1 mile below Orderville rap 2 is the junction with the Zion Narrows. 

From the Narrows junction turn left (south) and travel 1.4 miles down the narrows to the steps leading to the sidewalk.   Follow the sidewalk another 1 mile to the Temple of Sinawava Shuttle stop.  From there it is a shuttle ride back to the visitor center.

GPS Waypoint Information

GPX Files Available for DOWNLOAD.
Downloadable GPX files for many of the canyons listed here are now available at the BG-Gear Store.  In addition to the waypoints, the GPX files also offer routes and tracks for the canyon.  Over time more GPX files will be added.

If you want to avoid manually adding waypoints into your GPS or mapping software, want the additional routes and tracks or simply want to support the efforts put into BluuGnome, head over to the BG-Gear Store and grab the files that interest you.

Elevations are approximate.  Waypoints with no elevation data will display NaN in place of the elevation.

For information about my waypoint naming convention and map symbols, refer to the Glossary page.

Notes for GPS information:
BEFORE
entering coordinates from this website, please ensure your system (GPS or mapping software) is set to the same datum used here.  Waypoint coordinates are listed with WGS84 datum and in Lat/Lon hddd.ddddd° format.  Entering coordinate information with inconsistent datum's can result in the waypoints being off by hundreds of feet.  It is important to keep this in mind when entering waypoints from any source.

Mis-Me (1) - Approach
  1. wBusStpWeepRock          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.27098   W -112.93942        Elev: 7,327 Feet
    Weepeing Rock and East Rim trail bus stop.
  2. tObpntWpRk          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.27053   W -112.93855        Elev: 4,371 Feet
    Trail head for Weeping Rock and Observation Point.
  3. jHidnCynTrlBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.26949   W -112.93615        Elev: 4,760 Feet
    Junction off the Observation trail where the Hidden Canyon trail starts.
  4. yEcho-LowerTp          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.27049   W -112.93247        Elev: 5,250 Feet
    Of note there is a USDI - NPS elevation marker here that says the elevation is 5194.
  5. yEcho-MidBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.27237   W -112.93107        Elev: 5,320 Feet
    Bottom Exit of Echo Canyon.
  6. jEastMesaTrl          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.27427   W -112.92827        Elev: 5,620 Feet
    Junction where the East Mesa trail starts off the East Rim trail and heads toward Observation point.
  7. jObservatnPt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.28105   W -112.93656        Elev: 6,510 Feet
    Junction off of the East Mesa trail to Observation Point.
  8. jNotMystery          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.28246   W -112.93565        Elev: 6,474 Feet
    This is where you would leave the trail to get to teh head of NotMystery Canyon. The apex of the NotMystery Canyon meets the trail about 800 feet east of this point.
  9. yMysteryTp          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.28903   W -112.93019        Elev: 6,775 Feet
    Top entry to Mystery Canyon.
  10. jMis-MeCanyon          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29653   W -112.91672        Elev: 6,650 Feet
    Junction where you will leave the East Mesa Trail to get to the drop in for Mis-Me Canyon. There are no easily defined or describable marks here.
  11. wMis-MeRP-01          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29700   W -112.91689        Elev: 6,607 Feet
    Path leading from the main trail leads to his spot on the rim at the head of Mis-Me Canyon.
  12. yMis-MeCynTP          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29727   W -112.91593        Elev: 6,600 Feet
    Top entry for Mis-Me Canyon. This a little to the right (east) of the obvious epex of the head. There is a tree near this drop in that is burned out on the half facing the canyon. There is a pile of rock nestled in the hollowed out side.
Mis-Me (2) - The Canyon,
  1. yMis-MeCynTP          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29727   W -112.91593        Elev: 6,600 Feet
    Top entry for Mis-Me Canyon. This a little to the right (east) of the obvious epex of the head. There is a tree near this drop in that is burned out on the half facing the canyon. There is a pile of rock nestled in the hollowed out side.
  2. wMis-MeRP-02          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29767   W -112.91656        Elev: 6,455 Feet
    Top of a gully or ravine running along the slope down the head of the canyon.
  3. wMis-MeRP-03          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29810   W -112.91688        Elev: 6,325 Feet
    Drop in the water course that can be down climbed. Some set up a rap here but it is sloped and easily down climbed if you take time to be careful of the loose rock. If rappeled the drop down the slope would be about 60 feet before is started to level off.
  4. dMis-MeCynR1-2          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29842   W -112.91694        Elev: 6,150 Feet
    Raps 1 and 2 - Mis-Me Canyon. Rap 1 ancored from a large pine tree and drops about 60 feet. Rap 2 a few feet down canyon of rap 1 and drops about 20 feet. There are no obvious anchors avalable for rap 2 but there is a crack LDC that works well for a knot chalk anchor.
  5. wMis-MeRP-04          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.30453   W -112.91945        Elev: NaN Feet
    Down climb around a monolithically huge boulder with a sand floor under it. Down climb LDC along a sloped fluted wall.
  6. wMis-MeRP-05          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.30870   W -112.92204        Elev: NaN Feet
    Drop of about 20 feet that is not down climbable but easily bypassed LDC.
  7. dMis-MeCynR3          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.31214   W -112.92295        Elev: 4,941 Feet
    Rap 3 - Mis-Me Canyon. Ancored LDC from 2 bolted hangers and drops about 25 feet.
  8. yMis-MeBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.31230   W -112.92319        Elev: 4,960 Feet
    Bottom exit of Mis-Me Canyon where it joins Orderville Canyon.
Mis-Me (3) - Exit
  1. yMis-MeBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.31230   W -112.92319        Elev: 4,960 Feet
    Bottom exit of Mis-Me Canyon where it joins Orderville Canyon.
  2. dOrderVileR2          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.31167   W -112.93784        Elev: 4,820 Feet
    Rap 2 in Orderville Canyon. Drops about12 feet anchored from 2 bolt and hangars LDC. The pool has a waterfall. There is a huge boulder overhead with tree growing on top. One of my favorite rappels. This is sometimes called the Guillotine due to the huge boulder chock stone over head.
  3. yOrdervilleBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.30803   W -112.94661        Elev: 4,670 Feet
    Bottom exit of Orderville Canyon. Junction where Orderville Canyon meets the narrows in the North Fork of the Virgin River. Zion Ntl. Park
  4. yMysteryBt          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29928   W -112.94447        Elev: 4,560 Feet
    Bottom exit of Mystery Canyon where it meets the Virgin River Narrows after the 120 foot Rap 11.
  5. jRiverWalkEnd          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.29672   W -112.94818        Elev: 4,560 Feet
    This is where the river walk side walk meets the river in The Narrows.
  6. tNarrowsBot          Lat/Lon (WGS84):  N 37.28535   W -112.94785        Elev: 4,440 Feet
    Bottom trailhead for the Virgin River Narrows at the Temple of Sinawava.