Location : Grand Canyon Hike Day2 South (NOBO Mile Marker 705)
Date: August 23rd, 2018
Weather: Overcast skies at the Trailhead, starting temperature 73 degrees and mid-day 86 degrees.
Total Mileage Completed : 22 miles on AZT / Feet +(-) 5609, 11.1% grade
Hike Description: So, you might be thinking “if you guys are day hikers and this blog is about day hiking the AZT, why are you doing a 2 day overnight”…. Well, good question. Is it possible to day hike the entire length of the GC out and back in one day, hummmm no. Well, maybe. The shuttle guy told us one guy he picked up on a late shuttle run had done it. All 44 miles and over 12,000 vertical up/down feet in elevation in one day. Ok, that would not be normal though. Our goal in this blog is to outline “manageable” day hikes of the AZT. So, could someone do a hike down to the midway point and hike back up, well yes… from either side, sure. People do that a lot, even though there are signs at the south and north rim stating not to. I mean at this point, I assume that you have been reading this blog and if you have done many of our hikes, you have enough legs to make that hike. Therefore if you want to, you could cut this 44 mile monster hike up into 2 hard hikes; a SOBO out and back and a NOBO out and back. We just chose for fun and simplicity to pull a permit and do the GC – Rim to Rim to Rim.
Keeping with my earlier Day 1 post, I am not going to write a narrative story about the hike, other than to say hike up the north rim was incredibly awesome and not as physically demandingly hard as I thought it would be. Don’t get me wrong this was a tough day of hiking, but not impossible. So, the first night we camped at Cottomwood campsite, which for information sake, is a series of little semi-forested (private) campsites, a ranger house and a multi-unit outhouse. From here we hiked out early in the morning getting to the north rim around noon. Quick turn around and water refill at the sign faucet and then down we went, all the way to the river bottom and some Phantom Ranch’s famous Lemonade then to set camp at Bright Angle. Note: Phantom Ranch’s general store closes each day from 4:00pm to 8:00pm, so hike fast if you need something.