Q1. What is canyoneering?
Canyoneering is an adventure sport that combines multiple outdoor activities such as hiking, rappelling and sometimes boulder-hopping to traverse down a canyon, typically formed by an ancient river.
Q2. Do I need to be in good physical condition to canyoneer?
It does help. Time in the canyon averages between 3-4 hours depending on the size of your group. A good indicator that you are physically fit enough for canyoneering is that you can comfortably walk 3 miles on a uphill fire road carrying a light pack.
Q3. Do I need previous canyoneering or climbing experience?
Not at all, but a familiarity with climbing (even if it was at a climbing gym or challenge course) will help you feel more comfortable with the activity. Of course, your guide will give you a demonstration and safety briefing prior to the start of your tour, and will assist you throughout, if you have any questions.
Q4. Are your tours suitable for families?
Yes, being outdoors is always a great family activity! We do, however, ask that all canyoneering participants be at least 8 years of age and a minimum of 60lbs. A 42-44” waist is the maximum size for our harnesses.
Q5. What should I wear?
We recommend that you wear loose, comfortable clothing that is not bulky (because you will be wearing a harness). Multiple, thinner layers are preferable, as weather conditions can change rapidly throughout the day. You will have some opportunities to add or remove layers (if needed), so plan to carry them with you in your pack. You may also wish to bring a light rain shell/wind jacket. Try to avoid wearing cotton or denim as these fabrics do not breathe or dry well; choose synthetic (such as dry-fit or wicking materials) instead. Running shoes and sturdy hiking boots work best, please no open-toed shoes.
Q6. Is there an age or weight limit?
We ask that all participants be at least 8 years of age, and those under the age of 18 be actively accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Though there is not a specific weight limit, participants must fit into a climbing harness with a waist measurement between 18-44″.
Q7. Are tours cancelled when it rains?
Yes, we cancel tours if there is a threat of bad weather. Canyoneering and storms do not mix, due to flashfloods. We do our best to check multiple weather channels before heading out. Climbing tours are cancelled as well if rain falls due to the sandstone soaking up water and becoming brittle. However, we would not begin a tour if there are adverse storm conditions such as lightning and thunder.
Q8. Do you accommodate large groups?
Yes, we can and frequently do accommodate large groups (we generally consider eight or more people to be a large group). There are several considerations we take into account when planning these tours, such as the group’s size, level of experience, special needs, client to guide ratio, etc. Please call us to discuss any details when booking a tour for a large group.
Q9. Can we book a private tour?
Yes, you can reserve a private tour for your group. Prices for charted tours are an additional 25%; please call us to discuss details. We recommend that you make reservations in advance.
Q10. Do you take young children climbing?
Absolutely. No one makes climbing look easier than kids who have the ability to read sequences faster than most adults. There is no weight limit and we do supply full body harnesses for smaller kids.
Q11. Do you take online bookings?
No. We do not take online booking because we feel it is important to discuss options and find the best tour for you.
Q12. What do I need to bring & what will be provided?
You Need To Bring:
- Close-toed Shoes
- Please do not wear flip-flops or sandals. Running shoes are great for wet canyons.
- Proper Clothing For The Day
- Please check the weather prior to the tour and dress appropriately. A light layer (or multiple layers) is always good to have - even in the summer.
- Water is essential even if you are not a “water drinker”. Please bring 2 liters of water per person (3 liters during the summer). This is very important. Drink every stop.
- Please bring bars or meals, if needed. The half-day tours are 4 hours and full day tours are 6+ hours.
- We can supply packs, if needed. A 20 to 30 liter pack is great for canyons. You will be carrying the gear Windgate Adventures provides (helmet, harness, gloves and belay device) plus personal gear.
- Sunscreen & Sun Glasses
- The desert sun can be intense, seek shade when possible, apply sunscreen often, and wear your sun glasses.
- Camera(s), Gopro(s) (extra battery), or Iphone(s)
- This is a must! The areas you will visit are some of the most beautiful in the world. To ensure your camera safety you may want to provide your own dry bag if in a wet canyon.
We will provide:
- Rappel Device.
- Backpack (if needed).
Q13. Is tipping my guide appropriate?
Our Guides are providing a professional service to you, your family, or your group. A good rule of thumb is to tip your Guide as you would a server in a restaurant, 15-20% of the tour, but of course any tipping is always at your own discretion. Gratuity is deeply appreciated.
Q14. What is your cancellation policy?
To reserve a guide for your tour, we will charge a deposit of 20% against your total cost. You will be charged the balance once your tour is completed. If you need to cancel, please inform us no later than one week (7 days) before your booked date to receive a full refund less $20 for each person or a minimum of $25 to cover administrative cost. The full amount of your tour will be charged for cancellations received within 48 hours of your booked date. If your guide cancels the tour due to threatening weather, you will recieve a full refund.
Q14. What is the distance to tour locations?
The distance to tour locations range from as little as 10 minutes to 15 minutes for tours such as our half day rock climbing and half day canyons. Ancient Art, Indian Creek and Castleton tower can be up to 1 hour drive time to the trailheads.