Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Down in the Canyon

Sunday June 5, 2011
Grand Canyon National Park

We were at the South Kaibab Trailhead
at 7:10 this morning.  Way to go troops!!
Going into the canyon means
So here we are at the top. 
The trail goes 6.8 miles down
to the Colorado River
and then another .6 to Phantom Ranch
or Bright Angel Campground.
But you have to have prior reservations
WAY in advance apparently to
stay at either of those.
Doing a 13.6 mile round trip wasn’t
in our plans and shouldn’t actually be in
anyone’s plans.
Mid 90’s at the bottom this week.

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Here’s the trail down…


Can you see the 3 switch backs?
We’re going down those and
That’s just the beginning of the trail!
We’re on our way to Cedar Ridge,
1.5 miles down, a 3 mile round trip.
The next easiest turn around point is at
Skeleton Point, 3  miles down,
6 miles round trip which we no doubt
could have done but we
didn’t want to be returning back up
in the heat of the day.

So a total of 3 miles is our plan.
At this point, we’re getting down below the edge.
You can see the trails at the bottom of the cliffs.

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Down and down…….

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The views were fantastic.
You can just see me off in
the shadows on the right.



Notice the “battleship” to the left in this picture.
Trail is on the right.

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We arrived at
Cedar Ridge.
1.5 miles below the rim.
See the "battleship" now?


This is the lowest point that we went
where we had a mid-morning snack
before starting back up.

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I was looking down to try to find the
bottom of the trail when who should fly by….
I had to be quick with the camera
can you see him??
California Condor.

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Back up the trail we went.
The little house is the restroom
and water station at Cedar Ridge


This part isn’t as easy as coming down


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Pretty steep at some points


And then as we got near the top
who should we see but
Ronald Reagon....oh no....that was Wagon Train
not Mule Train




By this time, the trail was a lot
busier with crazy people just starting
out which will assure they are hiking
in the noon day sun.


We reached the top around 10:20 and
figured it had taken us about the same time
to go down as it did to come out.  The only
reason we could come up with was that we
took a lot more pictures on the easier trip down.
And walked a lot slower on the trip out.  :-)
We spent at least an hour at Cedar Ridge so the
hikes were each about an hour in and out.
They had warned us that it would take
twice as long to hike out as it did to hike down in. 
But that didn't prove to be true for us.

Once at the top, having just seen the
mule train,  we went
over to the mule barn to see
what was going on.

How did he know I had a carrot??

Grand Canyon provides water at
numerous points throughout the park
and at many trailheads including South
Kaibab so we filled up our Camel Backs.

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Then, because we had taken the East end Yellow bus
to get to the South Kaibab trail head, we decided
to go on out to the last stop
Yaki Point
and take a look at the views before going



On our way back we hopped off the bus
at Pipe Creek Vista,  the stop right
before South Kaibab


When we got back to the Visitors Center
we went over to Bright Angel Lodge
where I had a double scoop and David a single of ice cream
before hopping on the Blue Bus to go home.
I was  calling that lunch and we were too
busy eating it to remember to get
a picture.  We seem to do that every time
ice cream is involved.  No pictures.  :-)

It was early afternoon by the time that was
all finished.  David went back to the rig and did
I have no idea what.  :-)

I walked over to Hopi house and spent
a delightful time sitting in their back
room looking through the books
on Mary Coulter and the Harvey Girls. 
Well, reading some of them actually.  :-)

Tostadas for dinner.
This is getting to be a habit!
But YUM!!!

About 7:00 or so we set out to take
the blue bus back to the red bus
and go out to Hopi Point to see the sunset.

We stepped out of the coach and I saw this
fellow staring back at me


He walked on out of the trees


into the drive and across it right toward me.
Hmmmmm   what did he want with me?
Too bad David didn’t get a picture of me
hiding behind a tree.


By this time of course everyone had come
out to get pictures and the Elk didn’t
seem to care a bit.

We got to Hopi Point over an hour
before sunset but it was already filling
up with people.  Condors circled overhead.
Swooping and gliding and not flapping
their 9 foot wings.  I wondered if they
came out for the colors too?


I asked David to pick out his 3 favorite sunset
pictures from the 65 he took.  :-))))
And here are his choices.
They are all taken toward the East as
the setting sun reflected on the canyon walls.




The end of another GRAND day.
It is SO nice having an entire week
to take our time!   I HIGHLY recommend it!!


  1. some folks do a rim to river to rim in one day. But, you got to be in tip top shape. I'm hoping to go to the bottom in the next year or two.

    A Arizona Holiday

  2. Such beautiful pictures! I can't wait until we are there, for more than a week! When I was in college, I went with a geology class, and we hiked the canyon, out and back up in one day. It was rough at 20! No way I can do it at 54 :)

  3. You must feel like you're in paradise. Just breathtaking!

  4. What a fantastic day!!!

    I can't imagine that it could get any better than this ;o))

    Your really are making our virtual trip to the GC a special one...Thanks:o))))

  5. Greetings From Southern California

    I am your newest follower. I invite you to visit my blog and become a follower, if you want too.

    God bless you and have a nice day :-)

    BTW, Great Photos!

  6. Beautiful. One could spend a lifetime here and still not see all the variations of beauty mother nature offers.

  7. Spectacular photos! When you finish this trip you will have enough stunning photos to publish a book!
    Hmmm, maybe a business opportunity :)

    ps-thanks for the camera tip. I'm going to check it out.

  8. Oh, those are wonderful pictures!!! U guys are having such an good time, i can tell!! :-)

  9. Great pictures and post. I loved the sunset there - I didn't make it to the bottom of the canyon either - lucky they have water - in summer, it certainly is hot!!


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