Straight Angle™: The Grand Post!
Sunday, September 16, 2007
At last, I have managed to sort the 1500 odd photos that we three of us (Myself, Mouly and Vivek) had shot during our trip to Grand Canyon this Labour Day weekend. It was a wonderful trip to say the least and one of the most adventurous that I had ever taken so far. Even when we planned for the trip early in the month of July, we had Rim-Rim hike on plan. Though we were not sure if we would really take the hike- because we had read that the Rim-Rim hike was extremely strenuous and should not be tried to be completed in a day, we were very skeptical on taking the hike.
Come Grand Canyon, all this changed. We reached Grand Canyon driving from Phoenix at around 5:30 a.m and what a sight it was. Truly magnificent. I couldn't resist my urge to hike down till the river- now the Rim-Rim here means, South Rim to North Rim or North Rim to South Rim, along a well established trail- there are numerous trails to do this-but the point is, if you plan for a Rim to Rim, you would have to trail atleast around 8 miles along the river before you start your hike back to the Rim[This is because, you can take only the North Kaibab Trail to reach the North Rim and this is a 14 mile trail, which is more than the 6.3 mile South Kaibab Trail that you can use to come down and claim up the South Rim]. This is different from hiking from South Rim- River and come back to South Rim. This would save you the hike along the river and would save you much time.
But, we decided against going for a Rim to Rim- we would remain with the South Kaibab Trail only to go down and come up. But, there are few words of caution- if you are planning for a hike, to the river, make sure that you have planned it comfortably well in advance. I had been to hiking and trekking a couple of times-but Grand Canyon is unlike anyother trek- its unlike any other hike- the extreme temperatures coupled with abysmal humidity, makes it a deadly combination- the South Kaibab Trail has no water source till you reach the Colorado River, which is like 6.3 miles down- it might not sound much- unless you start walking and find the sun beating down on you mercilessly.
Certain things to keep in mind when you hike in the canyon.
Carry liquids- I am not saying just water precisely for a reason- though you would loose lot of water due to sweating, it is wise to carry salted liquid- or some salty stuff, like Glatorade or Lemonade- rather than just water- It is not just loss of water, it is also loss of bodily salt that can cause much harm and tiredness.
Carry lots of dry fruits, nuts and salted peanuts to supplement your food. Take more than enough food- eat twice as your normal- its not just lack of water that is dangerous, it is also lack of good food.
Wear cotton clothes- that can stay wet for a considerable time. It is advisable to wet your dress before you start the trail, if you are planning to start it after the Sun rise. It is wiser to hike during early morning and late evening/nights- if you are carrying a flash light, it is better to start your hike after 4 p.m.
Don't carry biscuits or glucose or stuff that would require even more water to digest them :)- the best food that you can carry are probably apples, oranges and fruits like that, which would quench both the thirst and the hunger.
When the temperature around is hovering around 100+F, the water in the river is near freezing- which might lead to hypothermia.
Last but not the least- never plan for a rim-river-rim hike in a day- never- and I mean it :)
All said and done, we did plan for the hike in a day- and we had to sleep on the trail, get lost in the night without a flash light, curse the silliness and sleep without water.
But then, all this apart, it was a wonderfull trip, that I would cherish for a long time to come- not the least because, it offered me good lessons.
For all things apart from the lessons, do take a look at the collection that I have got!
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