Yesterday (Wednesday) we went canyoneering. First they asked us if we had ever rappelled before. I had, once, but that didn’t really count because they were kind of lowering me down. I was 7.
They said that we were going to practice. We went up 60 steps ( or 61, I can never get it right) and came to the highest point of the barn above the climbing wall.
Our guide’s name was Shelby. Shelby told us how to rappel. First you clip on a special harness that is also used for the zipline. Then your harness gets clipped onto a rope and the guide holds the other end of the rope so you’re secure. Then if you’re a righty you put your left hand on the loop on your harness and your right hand holds the rope behind your back. That hand controls how fast you rappel.
We Pavliks generally consider ourselves to be punctual and considerate guests. However, upon arriving at the Zion Ponderosa Lodge, we found that they did not have a record of our canyoneering tour reservation, which we’d already booked and bought $600 worth of “recreation vouchers” to pay for. Then they tried to charge us quite a bit more than that, since the deal we originally booked under was apparently no longer valid (and no one seemed to remember what it was). Then they told us the minimum age was twelve, although in our earlier conversation they said our nine-year-old would be fine as long as she was an adventurous sort. So we made a bit of a nuisance of ourselves, with the front desk and the recreation center and eventually the general manager. Finally we got it all straightened out Tuesday night, and set our alarms to have breakfast right at 7:30 so as to be ready to leave for the tour at eight.
Walking through the door at 8 o’clock sharp, pleased with ourselves for getting everyone up and ready in time, we were met with consternation by the staff — who informed us that it was in fact 9 a.m. Which meant that for the past two days we’d been in the wrong time zone — betrayed by all our various devices, which still indicated Pacific time. Which also meant that we’d arrived at the lodge restaurant just before it closed (so that was why they seemed to be rushing us!). And that we’d been hanging out in the hot tub after the 10 p.m. closing time (so that was why the guy told us he was shutting down the pool when (we thought) it was only 9:30!) So it’s possible that the Pavliks are not the most popular people at the Zion Ponderosa.
Fortunately,we were the only people on our tour, and the kind people at the recreation center scrambled around to accommodate us. Poor Shelby hadn’t even expected to be guiding that day. Between that and the fact that she had to spend much of the tour listening to Nadia and Lanie bicker about who was going to go first, we felt compelled to empty our wallets for a very generous tip.
And it was all worth it — the tour was amazing. So you should all come do it! But maybe don’t mention we sent you.