Location : Grand Canyon Hike Day3 North (NOBO Mile Marker 697.6)
Weather: Overcast skies at the Trailhead, starting temperature 73 degrees and mid-day 89 degrees.
Total Mileage Completed : 7 miles on AZT / Feet +(-) 4812, 13.3% grade
Hike Description: This hike is the hike out of the Canyon from the Bright Angle Campsite via the South Kaibab Trail.
So this was it…. The big hike out. Similar to the elevation gain that we had the previous day coming out of the canyon on the north rim, but in a much shorter distance, steeper… and a little more elevation. The night before, Tom and I attended a little moonlight presentation by a park ranger at the Phantom Ranch’s outdoor arena. Really a bunch of wooden benches and lanterns. Very National Park… He told everyone of the history of the Grand Canyon but more importantly, he told us the next day would be hot and if you’re hiking out of the Canyon via the South Kaibab trail you better start early. Up before the sun with headlamps on, Tom and I packed up, filled up and we were back on trail by 4:30am. See the north canyon is mostly shaded with tight canyon walls and trees. The South Kaibab is completely sun exposed the entire way up or down. The ranger warned everyone, “Don’t get stuck ½ up at midday”. By the time the sun broke over the mountains to the east, we were already at mile 3 and making good time. For some ungodly reason, I had legs of speed and even though this was the most constant challenging 7 mile straight uphill climb I have even done, we did a great job and by 8:25am we were out. Myself being the first person out of the Canyon on that day, August 24, 2018…. My B-day, and in under 4 hours…
Tom and I took the shuttle to the Grand Canyon village and found the breakfast buffet. Coffee, sausage, muffins, potatos and eggs, ICE tea…. Oh my god it was the best breakfast ever. We were like celebrities walking around with our large hiking packs and sweat stained cloths. People kept asking us…. “Did you just hike the Canyon?” This was truly a good day.