South Kaibab Trail, GCNP

We were told that if we only had time for one day hike, this should be it.  This trail has the quickest elevation drop and is the fastest way to the bottom of the Grand Canyon.  Not that we went all the way down… {{On that note, hiking with kids is hard.  Even if you think they are “old enough”.  They probably aren’t.  Just FYI.}}

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at the start of the trail head
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looking down at the trail (holy switchbacks, Batman!)

My first thought wasn’t of being overwhelmed with splendor.  It was, “Ummmm…where do I catch the elevator back up?”  (Not gonna lie -it sucked, but yes, it was totally worth it!)

I’m probably letting my Nerd flag fly here, but I was overly intrigued by this:

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What is it, you ask?  It’s the dead-end of a branch of the canyon.  Tell me that you haven’t looked out at this and wondered what the point where all those little “arms” ended looked like?

_NLG3860Just me?  Oooookaaayyyyy….

The views of the horizon don’t change much other than light hitting it in different places and causing beautiful color changes (sunset pics to come in a later post!).  However, after going down and looking up, you get a totally different sight:

I don’t know why I loved this view but I did

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I love, love, love the striations!  And yes – OF COURSE! – we visited the Yavapai Geology Museum before going down, for maximum effect.  I highly recommend you doing the same on your visit to GCNP!

 Sooooo…the trip back up…there was no elevator or even escalator.  I would’ve settled for a rickety old funicular.  Instead, I walked [slowly] while trying to remember what I learned in the museum and “studied rocks” on the way up.

I found some cool ones!  (Remember the heart from my previous post?)  I won’t bore you with them.  Wellll…maybe I’ll share just one:

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you can just seeeeeeee the individual layers!!!

Wellll….maybe just one more…

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 I was OBsessed with those purple geode-looking rocks embedded in the walls

I took so long “studying up on geology” (certainly not “resting every 5 minutes”) that my family was kinda far ahead of me on the trail…

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2 of my people

There’s a reason they advise against going to the bottom and back in one trip.  The “short” hike we did was enough for one day!  My daughter vomited right after she got to the top. Poor thing inherited my EXTREME HATRED of the heat.  (Did I yell that?)*

The next time I go, I wanna camp at the bottom!

* hard to believe, but the Grand Canyon was cooler than where we live…

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