Grand Canyon madness?

14ers in California and Washington state or any other peak in the USA
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Grand Canyon madness?

Postby AzScott » Fri Aug 25, 2006 2:21 pm

I have a crazy idea that just might be awesome. Though it's been done before, so it's not too outlandish.

Who wants to hike North Rim to South Rim in the Grand Canyon in a day? I've done it as a backpack before (a long time ago). My recent backpacks have been in more remote regions of the canyon. I haven't been in the Corridor in awhile and thought this would be fun. I just thought this would be something fun to do (not to mention, be able to say I've done!) Who's up for it? Was thinking about it sometime later this fall...and now you guys have a place to crash in AZ! PM me if you're interested.

And yes, TalusMonkey, we can climb Humphreys too! And bring Colt 45/Mickey's/Camo


P.S. We've already got the vehicle shuttle business set up. Lots of driving, yes, but totally will be worth it.

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Postby womanhiker » Fri Aug 25, 2006 3:24 pm

My boyfriend did North Rim to South Rim at the end of May, while I drove around to meet him. He loved it, even though it was pretty hard at times. He ran/walked it in a little under six hours. Make sure you try to find a cool day, it can get VERY hot down in the canyon. Also start early! He was done by noon just as the heat was coming in.

And to whoever is doing the driving for you, it took four hours and was definately pretty in spots. Not bad at all.

Best of luck!

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rim to rim

Postby trekkin_gecko » Fri Aug 25, 2006 6:58 pm

hey wyo guy
i'm hiking north to south on october 1st
taking the shuttle from the south rim and staying a night in the lodge the night before
should be a good challenge
have you hiked humphrey's peak yet?
you're in phx now, right?
i'm also going to spend the week after labor day in rocky mountain national park
it will be nice to get out of the heat for a few days
there's plenty of hiking here, just not very high
enjoy your trip!

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Postby Beaker » Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:09 pm

Hiking in RMNP - not very high?? Ummmm, Long's Peak?
You have a cough? Eat a whole box of Ex-Lax tonite, tomorrow you'll be afraid to cough.

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Postby Sherpa Bob » Sat Aug 26, 2006 12:01 pm

Doing the Rim-to-Rim in the canyon is a fabulous hike. I have done 17 crossings and will share some insight with you.

First the facts. There are 2 trails coming off of the South Rim that can be used in a Rim to Rim. Bright Angel (6820ft) which is located by most of the South Rim buildings and South Kaibab (7200ft) which is located a couple of miles to the east, depending on time of year you might be able to park there otherwise you will need to be dropped off or take the shuttle bus over to the trail had. They both go down to the river (2450ft), across it, and join near the Bright Angel Campground. The South Kaibab trial is 6.9 miles while the Bright Angel trail is 9.4 miles. From there up to the North Rim (14 miles) the trail is called North Kaibab. The North rim is at 8250ft. Please note that from South to North you are looking at 6000ft of gain. Going the other direction is less than 5000ft of gain.

Now some less obvious things. Once you get to the top of the North Kaibab Trail you are not there yet, it is another 2 miles toget to the Lodge area. This is a big surprise to some people as they have mentally prepared themselves to be done as they emerge on to the rim. It sounds like you plan to hike from North to South so I would suggest that you get a cab to take you from the Lodge to the trailhead in the morning (make arrangments the night before at the main lodge). The choice of trails up to the South Rim becomes a more interesting one. If you are racing the clock there is no question about which one to take, you have to save the 2.5 miles. BUT there may be other things to consider. There is NO water on the South Kaibab trail, and there is a huge difference in the number of people that use this trail. I would recommend that (despite the extra 2.5 miles) you should take the Bright Angel trail up to the South Rim. From North to South you will find water at the trail head, just before the tunnel 1.7 miles, at Aiken's cabin 4.7 miles, at Cottenwood Campground 6.9 miles, Phantom Ranch 13.8 miles, by the bath room at Bright Angel Campground 14.0 miles. On the the way up there is NO water on the South Kaibab. On the Bright Angel there is water on the south side of the river as you start up the trail, and head away from the river 15.6 miles, Indian Gardens Campground 18.8 miles. With 4.6 more miles there are 2 sites for water BUT the park closes both of these down around the beginning of October, there is one at the 3.0 and the 1.5 mile resthouses 20.4 miles and 21.9.

This is a long hike with alot of elevation change and should not be taken lightly. The Park Rangers will tell you that "at a minimum it will take 3 days to do a crossing". If you are in fair shape and trail run you could do it before lunch. The trail is a highway compared to what we have on the 14ers, the scenary is stunning and this is one of the most dangerous hikes I have ever done when it is hot out. The heat in the Canyon can kill you. You are going at a good time of year but it can still be over a 100F down there. Be very careful in the heat, get an early start when it is cooler (the temperature might be in the 30's coming off of the North Rim). At this time of year you will get some shade on the way up after Indian Gardens.

If you want to have some fun hike from South to North, spend the night over there and hike back the next morning (I find that going both ways in one day stops being fun at some point). This is a popular hike to do and you may not be able to get a room on the North Rim in October. They close the North Rim on October 15 and alot of people plan way in advance to do the hike as late in the season as possible. The South Rim should not be any problem getting a room. Getting reservations for the big dining room on the North Rim may also be hard at this point, but do try. Dinner reservations just before sunset is the best time. The dining room has very large windows and give an amazing view when there is a colorful sunset. Every once in awhile the water pipeline coming across the Canyon breaks and you will not be able toget water. Though unlikeky you might want to taking a pump with you just in case. It will be a warm hike but it could be cold on the North Rim at night so take some extra clothing for the time on the North Rim.

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Postby AzScott » Sat Aug 26, 2006 1:35 pm

As for more details, I was planning around starting around 2 am on the NORTH Rim (heading towards the SOUTH), because, as some of you have stated a few times, it gets hot down there in the middle of the day. I'm going to stick to the Kaibab Trail until Phantom Ranch, when I'll use the Bright Angel to get up to the South Rim. Yes, we have a vehicle shuttle already planned to get between our cars on both rims. Reason for sticking to the Bright Angel Trail being, there is no water available along the South Kaibab, which could be problematic in the afternoon.

I am looking for a weekend where the moon will be fullest to allow easy night hiking. Yes, I have hiked on the North Kaibab Trail before in the dark, so I am fully aware that there are cliffs around (and really cool feelings of vertigo!), especially once you get into the Supai and Redwall formations. That's why I'm looking to go during a moon-lit weekend. I am not new to the Grand Canyon by any means. I've been backpacking down there 7 times, and everything these folks have told you about it is very true - it's good advice!

Once I pick out a weekend, I'll let you guys know. Looking at October, but maybe even November, at this point. It's ~24 miles in one day, which is pretty stout, but certainly manageable.

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Postby AzScott » Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:24 pm

It's on!

For anyone who wants to (and wants to have a good time!), September 30th - a group of 5 of us from the ASU geography department will be crossing the Grand Canyon in a day! One of our friends, who is interested in hiking part of the canyon but wants nothing to do with a 24-mile hike, will drop us off at the North Rim and meet us on the South Rim as she hikes down the Bright Angel Trail towards us after driving around to the other side. Man, we owe her a beer or three...

There's always room for more - let me know if you're interested still. For the Colorado folks, I know it's a long ways off, but for those of us on this site who are a little distanced from the majority of the crowd, this would be a great chance to meet and get a Desert Chapter of together :wink: :lol:



Postby CG_old » Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:40 pm

The R2R2R (Rim to Rim to Rim) is actually quite popular in ultrarunning circles and is done by quite a few people every year... it makes the car thing easier to work out too. :-)

Total distance is about 48 miles, with 13,300' of gain, I think.


Google R2R2R, there's lots of info...looks fun! It's been on my to-do list for a while, but probably won't happen until next year...

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Postby Kevin Baker » Thu Sep 14, 2006 2:50 pm

I did the R2R2R from South to North and back in April with Gerry and Jennifer Roach in 17.5 hrs at a moderate pace. If you're doing N to S, S. Kaibab is shorter on the way out even though there is no water. You can probably get by with 3 liters for the last 6 miles, but I was hiking up in the dark. Make sure your feet are ready for this, because it is unlike climbing a moutain. Your feet will take a beating. We did some flat training walks of 18-22 miles to get ready for it.

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Postby Alan Ellis » Thu Sep 14, 2006 7:41 pm

R2R is a great hike and one of our all time favorites. Here's our trip:
Sack up and climb.


Postby CG_old » Thu Sep 14, 2006 8:45 pm

Alan, I love your tag line... that's awesome :lol:

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Postby AzScott » Fri Sep 15, 2006 9:26 am

Actually, folks, it got pushed back a week to October 7th. Two of our group had something come up, but still want to go the next weekend. It's gonna be cold up on the North Rim in the morning!


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