city slickers

Grand Canyon Hike Down

Way back in 2004, some good friends of mine were planning the trip of a lifetime… hike down the Bright Angel Trail of the Grand Canyon to raft the Colorado River. A nine day float trip through one of the eight wonders of the world. They had been planning the trip for about six months, when one member of this testosterone-party had to back out, and they needed a sixth person to fill their raft. If I have only one talent… filling empty space may just be it. Let the photo shoot begin…

Canyon Rimfacing the canyon in person was beyond words

Grand Canyon Kick-OffNorm, Chris, Jones, Sean, Todd and Kent

Ok, here’s the deal, the hike from the edge of the canyon to the river is over nine miles. Sure it’s all down hill, but we were carrying a ton of stuff, and it was 100+ degrees, and… Waa, waa, waa… I got to live a kid’s dream, quit your whining fat-boy.

Canyon Hamreally, they just brought me along to take pictures

Canyon PhilHere’s Freaky Phil, one of our guides

Because the waiting list to raft the canyon is 10+ years, we found a great company, Outdoors Unlimited, who sold us space on one of their trips. We loved the guides, the food and all of the extracurriculars offered by OU.

Canyon Tomfebreeze and axe can only do so much

Canyon Fallsthe day hikes off of the river were unbelievable

Canyon RidgeSB didn’t know the trip was co-ed

We ate like kings, shared our life’s stories, laughed hard, and… we melted! It was hot, but they say it’s a dry heat. 120 is 120, I don’t care if it’s a dry heat, it’s dragon breath hot. At night it did drop into the low 90’s, but the desert wind would cruise in from the south, and it felt like you were trying to sleep while someone was blowing a hair dryer all over you. However the river is all melted snow, and it was frigid, so sometimes at night we would sleep with our feet in the river. And speaking of the river, it was the star of the show. It was the reason that we made the trek, and it certainly did not disappoint.

Canyon Easy

Canyon Effort

Canyon Ride

Canyon Paddles High

Maybe it won’t be a once in a lifetime trip. Maybe one day I’ll pack up my boys (I’ll wait until they are big enough to pack their big bad dad’s gear down the trail) and we’ll live this dream together. And one more thing…

Canyon Hairychested-Manthis is me expressing myself

I am out of words now.


5 responses to “city slickers

  1. Chris, that story about calling Ashley to wish her a late happy birthday two days before her actual birthday, while we were on a raft in the grand canyon and she was at home with four children under the age of three….. that is one of my all-time favorite stories. …but not quite as good as the duct-taped baby to the bed story.

  2. Pingback: city slickers II: the legend of sunshine’s gold « the dude abides·

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