Renowned Canyoneer to Speak at Los Alamos Mountaineers Meeting April 16

Los Alamos Mountaineer member rappelling in Birch Hollow Canyon outside Zion National Park. Courtesy/LA Mountaineers
A group of Los Alamos Mountaineers preparing for a rappel in Birch Hollow Canyon, outside Zion National Park. Courtesy/LA Mountaineers

The April program of the Los Alamos Mountaineers will feature a free talk by Rich Carlson, regarded as perhaps the most renowned canyoneer in the United States.

Carlson will present his talk at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 16, at Fuller Lodge, following the business portion of the Mountaineers’ meeting.

Mountaineers ascend, whereas canyoneers descend, through the twists and drops and geology of canyons narrow and wide. Carlson has been canyoneering for more than 35 years, building a reputation as the most experienced professional canyoneering guide and instructor in the United States.

Carlson, in his talk, will give a general introduction to the sport of canyoneering and the basic skills and tools required to navigate canyons safely. He will then focus on a recent trip to Nepal and show the hidden treasures that canyoneering can unlock for adventurers, and why people are taking up canyoneering increasingly every year.

Founder of the American Canyoneering Association, Carlson is extremely active in the global canyoneering community, offering training opportunities, building online resources, sponsoring events and designing canyoneering-specific gear with companies like Blue Water Ropes and Rock Exotica.

In 1999, Carlson became the first American to be certified as a canyon guide in Europe, and he regularly teaches courses and workshops all over the world. His 2014 itinerary includes Utah, Arizona, Colorado, California, Mexico, Costa Rica, South America, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Nepal, Iran and elsewhere.

His visit to Los Alamos adds New Mexico to that extensive list of locales.

The Los Alamos Mountaineers, founded in 1952, promotes a variety of outdoor-oriented activities. For information on the Mountaineers and upcoming trip opportunities, including skiing, hiking, biking and horse-packing, visit


Los Alamos Mountaineers stand next to the ‘north pole’ in Subway Canyon at Zion National Park. Courtesy/LA Mountaineers


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