Forum Index » General Lightweight Backpacking Discussion » Grand Canyon Route: 5 days, 4 nights, rim-to-rim. Any suggestions?


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Timothy Reynolds
(magrenell)

Locale: New England
Grand Canyon Route: 5 days, 4 nights, rim-to-rim. Any suggestions? on 07/20/2011 11:25:44 MDT Print View

Hi,

Me and my 3 hiking buddies are dead-set on a Spring hike (2012) in the Grand Canyon. I've been there just the once (I live/hike in the Northeast) and it was with my old Mom, so I just did a solo day-hike down the Kaibab trail on that occasion.

In the past, we've done week-long stretches on strenuous sections of the AT, but none of us have rappelling skills, or anything of that nature, so the ideal route would be trail only (scree fields, and steep, rocky decents/accents are fine). We're naturally concerned about hitting good water spots. Again, the we'd be ideally looking for marked, or semi-marked trails.

We've already looked at the Escalante route, and while it looks exciting, we were hoping to do something longer. Perhaps there's an extension of this possible?

Any and all suggestions are welcome. There're probably a gajillion posts about this here already, so I don't mind simple links to previous discussions of this matter.

Thank you in advance!

Tim.

HK Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Grand Canyon Route: 5 days, 4 nights, rim-to-rim. Any suggestions? on 07/20/2011 11:33:41 MDT Print View

Your OP said "rim to rim" so that's limiting to the corridor, maybe going down the Kaibab, spending a night at the Ranch/Cottonwood camp, going up to spend another night (#2) on the North Rim, going back down to Cottonwood/Phantom Ranch for night #3, then going up to Indian Gardens for night #4, before going back up for day #5. Could stop for a couple nights to basecamp instead or skip Indian Gardens if you don't mind a long day 5 going up.

I've spent 5 days in the canyon on the Tonto which used the South Rim but had a side excursion to Phantom Ranch. Could have spend a couple days down there dayhiking from a pretty lush basecamp.

Timothy Reynolds
(magrenell)

Locale: New England
Yes; Rim-to-Rim is limiting. Scratch that. on 07/20/2011 12:34:04 MDT Print View

Thanks, HK.

You're right -- rim-to-rim is limiting. I guess what I'm looking for is a good start and end point.

T.

Timothy Reynolds
(magrenell)

Locale: New England
Augmenting the Escalante Route? on 07/20/2011 13:25:58 MDT Print View

I would also welcome suggestions as to how we could augment the Escalante route one extra day. This could include suggestions for day hikes in or around one of the campsites.

Thanks again,

Tim.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Augmenting the Escalante Route? on 07/20/2011 13:43:28 MDT Print View

Up-and-Back to the Little Colorado River and the Beamer Cabin.

A challenging day hike, with a little history thrown in.

If you do it, plan on refilling water at the campsite below the LCR versus off the confluence island. Easier and much faster.

Edit:
BTW, some climbing skills would be nice for the Papago Wall. If you can climb a vertical ladder with a pack you can do it. The climbing skills will help with your confidence.

Edited by greg23 on 07/20/2011 13:55:21 MDT.

Sumi Wada
(DetroitTigerFan) - F

Locale: Ann Arbor
Re: Grand Canyon Route: 5 days, 4 nights, rim-to-rim. Any suggestions? on 07/20/2011 13:44:37 MDT Print View

>> We've already looked at the Escalante route, and while it looks exciting, we were hoping to do something longer.

When you say "longer", do you mean more distance/miles? Because Escalante is typically a 4-7 night hike. I don't know many people who would want to do it in less than 4 nights.

The mileage for the Escalante route proper is about 12 miles but that's just from Tanner Beach to Hance Rapids. It's 9+ milies from the rim to Tanner Beach down Tanner trail. You can do this in one or two days. You would typically spend another two days to get to Hance Rapids. From Hance Rapids, you can hike out New Hance. Another popular hike out from Hance Rapids is a night in Hance Creek and then Horseshoe Mesa and out Grandview trail.

Be aware that non-corridor trails like Tanner and New Hance are really nothing like South Kaibab.

Scott Truong
(elf773)

Locale: Vancouver, BC
RE: Grand Canyon Route: 5 days, 4 nights, rim-to-rim. Any suggestions on 07/20/2011 15:13:25 MDT Print View

Escalante Route: to make it longer you could continue on the Tonto Trail westward for quite a while. Get the Natgeo map.

Though, I wouldn't want to miss Horseshoe Mesa and the caves or Grandview Trail. And if you guys are extra fast, you could always spend an extra day checking out 75 mile Canyon or check out the Cottonwook Creek area. I'd imagine an extra day isn't hard to kill on that route.

I did it in 4 nights and 5 days and I don't think I'd want to it any faster and we had about a 8-9 lb baseweight. Though you may be in way better shape.

From the sounds of it, the Escalante seems what you guys are looking for. Good luck.