great thumb mesa

LapKat – a tributary of Matkat Canyon

Matkat is a big canyon complex tucked deeply into the West side of Great Thumb Mesa. It is the only way to get from the river level to the Esplanade for 20 river miles in either direction. We passed the exit of this slot climbing up Matkat at least six times before I walked up the tributary and discovered a pleasant surprise. Even though it was high in the Redwall, it had a nice alcove below the final rappel – it was a REAL slot! Albert Putzig, his Dad Al, and Rich Rudow returned in Mar 2012 to do the first known descent of this hidden gem.

This is the first time LapKat has been published. It provides the easiest access of any of the Matkat tributary slots, and unlike the other tributaries, is suited for entry level canyoneers. There are 5 rappels – the longest is 60′. The slot can be done without wetsuits if you’re willing to do a few short wades.

Click on the first photo to see the full scale images.