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Technical Canyoneering Course (ACE-L1) Phoenix, AZ

March 31, 2017 - April 2, 2017


3-Day Technical Canyoneering Course (ACE-L1) – Phoenix, Arizona

Learn to Canyoneer!

Canyoneering and Canyoning are terms used to describe an adventure sport that combines hiking, wading, swimming, jumping, sliding, boulder-hopping, scrambling, rock-climbing, sometimes packrafting and always rappelling — often over waterfalls.

Canyoneering is an emerging adventure sport in the US, and has grown significantly in popularity over the past decade.  This sport has unique risks and requires a very specific set of technical skills to enjoy it safely.  Rock-climbing, caving, mountaineering and swift water training teach related skills for your ‘toolbox’, but Canyoneering has become highly specialized, and much of the gear and many of the techniques of Canyoneering are distinctly different from those of the other sports …and, that’s where we come in!

Prerequisite: None

This is a beginner to intermediate course which teaches the skills necessary to safely descend canyons as part of a group (being a competent participant and the knowledge to recognize and implement safe canyon practices). This course is designed to quickly get the beginner up-to-speed on basics, to give both the rookie and intermediate canyoneer new tools for his/her toolbox, and will help intermediate cayoneers refine their current skill set!  The topics and skills covered will include:

  • Knots, Bends and Hitches
  • Canyon Rating System
  • Rules, Ethics, Style, Communication and Courtesy
  • Specific Gear Choices, Requirements, Use and Care
  • Belays, Lowering and Handlines
  • Natural, Artificial, Transient & Human Anchors
  • Static and Contingency Riggings
  • Rope Deployment, Coiling, Bagging and Etiquette
  • Rappelling Techniques & On-Rope Skills 
    (Adding Friction Pre-rappel, Mid-rappel, Locking Off, etc.)
  • Specialized Rappelling Techniques 
    (Hard Starts, Soft Starts, Free-Hanging, Over-Hanging, etc.)
  • Basic Climbing & Down Climbing Skills 
    (Bridging, Stemming, Partner Assists, Partner Captures, etc.)
  • Safety Checking and Basic Self-Rescue
  • And, within each of these broad subjects are a myriad of skills and tools.

Host:  Klaus Gerhart          Instructors:  Klaus Gerhart, Jason Marvin

The cost of this course is $395. (The course fee is non-refundable, but may be put toward a future class during the same calendar year if 30 days notice are given, cancelling your participation in this course.)  Please read more course/company policies here.

This class will begin on Friday evening (6:30-9:00) at our campsite/training site (location will be provided to participants … it’s about 30 miles from Central Phoenix) with an orientation, introduction, and presentation on the canyon rating system, gear, weather, canyon topography … and getting to know each other.  The class will reconvene on Saturday and Sunday at the same location and will run from 7am-5:00pm both days.  Whether you’re local to the Phoenix, Arizona region or whether you’re traveling to Arizona for this course, you are welcome to camp at our training site on Friday and Saturday evening, or you can travel to the training site from your home or hotel!

This course immediately precedes our UBERFest: Arizona .. participants in this course are welcome to join us for some real canyoneering at this event!

Required gear for this course is a harness and a helmet (I can loan these out if you don’t have them … and I will offer a 10% discount for any gear bought before/during/directly after the course), and I’ll also be loaning out carabiners, descenders, tethers, foot loops, prussiks, etc.  Feel free to borrow my gear for this course, until you determine what your needs will be.


March 31, 2017
April 2, 2017
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Tonto NF
Phoenix, AZ United States + Google Map


Ben Lewis
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