Grand Canyoneering

TripLeader

Explorer
I've had the good fortune to hike in the Grand Canyon several times. The first time was in November 2007. Here's a report on that trip.

2007
Part 1 [Introduction]
A good friend of mine had been backpacking in the place a couple of times before. We both worked overnight together. He would talk fondly of the "Big Ditch" and think of other routes to try. I was lucky enough to hang around him enough to get invited. A group of four was made. Two of us had never been. The other two had done some Arizona and Utah trips together.

We needed to make the most of our time, so we drove the 20 hour trip overnight. We arrived around noon, if I remember correctly after all these years. I was 12 years younger then, and a night-shifter, so my youth and excitement kept me fueled. I'm not so much keen on overnight drives these days.

But we got there--the south rim in the national park. We used the rest of the day to do the typical touristy stuff. We went to the rim, looked at Kolb Studio, the Maswik Lodge, and so on.

Among my first views of the Grand Canyon.
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A mule train headed down.
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We found dinner and went to our "economy" motel room on the rim. I'm not sure if Xanterra is still the official park concessionaire, but they were at the time. Ah, such found memories of finding the dead mouse behind the mini-fridge. Or was that the next year? But, it did not hamper our enjoyment of the trip. A bed at the top was nice after being up for over 24 hours. Tomorrow would be the big day.
 

TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 2 [Down the Hermit Trail]

We woke early the next morning. We took our packs and headed to the rim. We waited on the bus to catch a ride down to Hermit's Rest.

You won't find a better view while waiting for the bus.
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Dropping down below the rim.
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TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 3 [Hermit Trail to Hermit Creek]

Continuing on our way.
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Some of the old structures around Hermit Creek.
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No dead mice tonight. But living mice? Yes.
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jgaz

Adventurer
I've had the good fortune to hike in the Grand Canyon several times. The first time was in November 2007. Here's a report on that trip.

2007
Part 1 [Introduction]
A good friend of mine had been backpacking in the place a couple of times before. We both worked overnight together. He would talk fondly of the "Big Ditch" and think of other routes to try. I was lucky enough to hang around him enough to get invited. A group of four was made. Two of us had never been. The other two had done some Arizona and Utah trips together.

We needed to make the most of our time, so we drove the 20 hour trip overnight. We arrived around noon, if I remember correctly after all these years. I was 12 years younger then, and a night-shifter, so my youth and excitement kept me fueled. I'm not so much keen on overnight drives these days.

But we got there--the south rim in the national park. We used the rest of the day to do the typical touristy stuff. We went to the rim, looked at Kolb Studio, the Maswik Lodge, and so on.

Among my first views of the Grand Canyon.
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A mule train headed down.
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We found dinner and went to our "economy" motel room on the rim. I'm not sure if Xanterra is still the official park concessionaire, but they were at the time. Ah, such found memories of finding the dead mouse behind the mini-fridge. Or was that the next year? But, it did not hamper our enjoyment of the trip. A bed at the top was nice after being up for over 24 hours. Tomorrow would be the big day.
I really like your picture of the upper tunnel
 

TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 5 [Eastward on the Tonto]

We went from the Hermit Trail to the Tonto Trail. The plan was to follow it the Bright Angel Trail, then back up to the rim.

Along the Tonto.
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The Tonto Trail generally is "level" along a plateau inside the canyon. The Colorado River is not visible from most places in and around the canyon. It's worth the time to take in the view when the river is there.
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TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 6 [Monument]

We came upon the Monument, all 168 feet of it.
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The sign reads "Granite Rapids."
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We followed Monument Canyon downstream to the river.
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The start of Granite Rapids.
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Here's an attempt at a panorama from my old 5 megapixel Kodak camera.
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TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 7 [Tonto]

We spent a night on the Tonto Trail and continued along it the next day.
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I don't have a good photo of it, but I was impressed by the section that passed above The Inferno.
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This helicopter was swapping out a backcountry latrine, as best as we could tell.
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TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 8 [Indian Garden Campground]

Our time on the Tonto came to an end as we approached the junction with the Bright Angel Trail. The large cottonwood trees in the desert always strike me as out of place.
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And we found our site and made our camp. We had neighbors. The campsites on the corridor trails get more use than where we had been on the Hermit and Tonto.
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After dinner, we started out to watch the sunset at Plateau Point.
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TripLeader

Explorer
2007
Part 10 [To the Rim!]

The next day was our hike out. It's about 5 miles of hiking from Indian Garden to the top.
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Plateau Point is where the trail ends in the center of the photo. The cluster of Cottonwood trees along the trail is Indian Garden Campground.
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And we were to the top. It was time for a group selfie. (Please excuse the outdated camera on the tripod--it was 2007, after all.) My friend had warned me that we would get strange looks when we appeared on the rim from tourists who had arrived with no knowledge of the hiking trails. The guy in the background is probably more confused about why someone would use a 6 inch tripod while wearing a 50 pound pack.
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That was the trip. The drive back home was long, especially compared to the drive there, which has that excitement & anticipation factor about it.

Thanks for reading! I'll try to post a couple of other Grand Canyon backpacking trips in the next few weeks.
 
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