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Canyoning is a relatively new sport in Romania. The firstaction of this kind has been reported in the years 1992 - 1993, but we gotlittle information about it. The origins of this sport lies somewhere in France andare lost in the mists of the years '79. Aboom takes place herewith the '80s and in 1997 canyoningis given a commission in the French Federation of Speleology.

In Romania, after somecontacts with French practitioners of this activity in 1994 it has been decided that a Committee to run Canyons in the Romanian Federation of Speleology be formed, which then turned into a Department.

The extent of canyoning in recent years in Romania, led inevitably to the creation of a legal framework for operation of the sport, which ended with the establishment of the Romanian Association of Canyoning,in 2007.

The activities held by the Romanian Association of Canyoning is developed in 3 directions:school competitions and expeditions. School Departmentprovides to those interested in theinitiation or trainingin this specializedbusiness and logistical support of training staff. Internshipsare organized: technicalinternships (for teammateand team leader), national training and certification of personnel (for initiators,monitors and trainers)and training sessions and certification guides.

The Competition Department aims to develop and popularize this activity, as well as creating athleteshierarchy and boosts their ranking by granting diplomas and prizes.Through the Expedition Department, fans of the sport are able to participatein exploration activitiesand visits to originalcanyons outside the country.

To practice canyoning we first need a natural environment. Canyonsare unique. They present in the form ofdeep cleft formed by the action of water erosion in limestone,or depending on the geological andmorphological environment can be simple valleys, ravines, gorges, deep beds crossed by streamsor rivers. The result is something cold, dark, modeled in high cliffs, often only of a few meters wide.

The descent of canyons is actuallygoing through their water stream, down to the end of the canyon, in one sense. It sounds pretty simple but there are many difficulties that may arise. Thus, going througha canyon one can find waterfalls, that must be lowered by rope, marmite to swim, crests to climb, fast currents to pass using the zip line, pools to hop,swimming in the cave passages. The result is a sport that brings togetherelements of climbing, caving, swimming, all led to extreme.

For canyonsto be passed safely, preparing by seeking information is necessary:
how to transit the canyon (approach marchand back, level of technical difficulty,bump, physical commitment, the water level);
• Any come out of the tour, additional access routes;

 water flow depends on geographical location, altitude, tank overflow, geomorphology;
• the climatic changes (temperature, precipitation, season, snow melting, etc.).
local rescueservice (speleologists rescue service, mountain rescue service, police, ambulance, fire brigade);

artificialregularization of water flows (artificial course dams)and flood hazardin this case due to unpredictable flow growth.

The notification of a third person about the chosen itineraryand time of returnmay be useful incertain situations. To use a single rope descent of lengthequal to twice the largest vertical route.This rope is recovered after each descent, making it impossible to return. In general, the canyons are cool, you have to get to swim through the water and therefore it must be practiced in the warm season (springflood threat and the water from melting snowis very cold).

Complete garment neoprene (withhood, socks and gloves)is essential to use in the canyon because it provides good thermal protection, mechanical (the jumps,drops, slides) andbuoyancy. Avoid canyontours during the stormor as the storm starts.It may be in order if the canyonmorphology is known, the withdrawalpoints or places to exit the route oradjacent to the collectionbasin. However, if we are in a flood while crossing a canyonwe accommodate to a safer level.

Canyons are not as delicate ascaves for example, but that does not mean thattheir environment does not requiregood protection (minimal impact). Therefore, those who practice this sport have tofollow certain rules. Thus, there must be nodamage to the canyon,to the way to and from the canyon.

In conclusion, canyoning is a very attractive activity, primarily because of the beauty of landscapes, their variety andapparent practice facilities. Although it seems that it is less dangerous than caving and climbing, difficulties may vary and may increase depending on water flow, which requires a great capacity of adaptation and improvisation, combined with a good knowledge of the environment. Practice requires a preliminary trainingfor specific skillsand techniques and for the necessary reflexes.

Canyons in Romania are not very difficult, but they can become, depending on season,precipitation and morphology, major obstaclesespecially for those without experience.

Felix Papiu - Romanian Association of Canyoning

For further information contact the Romanian Associationof Canyoning

In Hunedoara County cayoning canbe practiced in Jgheabului canyon inSureanu Mountains trough the Marii Valley in Retezat Mountains



Jgheabului Canyonul and Munceilor Gorges are particularly attractive for canyoningactivities.  They are located in the Nature Park Grădiştea Muncelului Cioclovina, near the village Bãnita.
Access to the canyon is on Route 66 (Haţeg- Petroşani) tothe forest road located near the viaduct Crivadianear a sheepfold.

To go through the canyon you need to cross nine waterfalls withheights between 4m and 18m and break the two portions of the cave Gaura Oanei. The moorings in the canyon were replaced and at the present there in special equipment with chains.

At the lastwaterfall a tree is used as bind. To get through the canyon you need specific information and canyoning equipment, helmet and light. Warning! The floods or with the great waters the canyonis dangerous.

For canyoningactivity is recommendedto contact the team before touring SalvaspeoHunedoara County RescueService (0723-197183) and check the weather forecast.
Hunedoara CSM can provide guides and equipment forcompleting the canyon (see contact address of the club