Monday, June 16, 2008

Hiking the Canyon

The first picture you see here is all of us just as we are setting off for our hike. The last picture is all off us once we made it back to the top. I must say, we don't look anywhere near as bad as we felt! This day of hiking the Grand Canyon in the hot hot sun completely made up for the weeks of cold rainy weather I had to put up with before we got here. Oh man, it was hot! Going down wasn't that bad (well, it was for Momsey... more on that in a minute) but coming back up was tough doing. I carried Reagan on my back the whole way down, and was prepared to tough it out on the way back up as well. I'm not so sure I would have made it! We had been hiking down for about 45 minutes when we stopped for a water break. Momsey announced to us at this point that she would not be continuing the rest of the hike down, and that she would see us back at the top. Her boot was not fitting properly, and she had developed "turf toe" (if you play football you will know exactly what this is) on the hike down from slamming the front of her toe into the end of her boot with each step. We all gave her a hard time and teased her endlessly... she took it all in stride and started heading back up the Canyon. (Post Note here... we now all feel like a-holes for giving her such a hard time. Her toenail turned all kinds of gross colors, and within two weeks THE WHOLE THING FELL OFF. We are not real sure if it will ever grow back!) So, minus Momsey the group continued on. We didn't hike all the way to the bottom... that would have taken days. One and half miles down was enough for us. Reagan fell asleep on my back about half way down, and stayed asleep until about half way back up. Once we made our turn to go back to the top, Pops graciously took over the job of carrying Reagan. This was quite a sentimental moment for him... thirty years prior he had carried me through the Canyon on the same hike. He toted her for a third of the way up and then passed the duty over to Ryan. Trust me when I tell you that going up was NOT easy. It was hot! And dusty! And hot! And long... much longer than going down! And hot! Thank goodness our turn around point had a water re-filling station. We had drained our camel backpacks on that hike back up. As hot and as tiring as it was, it was well worth it just for the view. But Reagan enjoying that view made it worth it even more! A small sampling of a few of her comments on the hike... "Hi Grand Canyon!" "It's so big!" "Don't fall down!" Once we made it to the top, we made use of the shuttle buses for the rest of our viewing. We were too tired to walk another step!

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