After our Mt.Whitney and Yosemite plans were canceled due to fires, we decided on an alternative plan; meet at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon and figure out the rest from there. After an 8 hour drive from California, Carlito and I arrived at the South Rim to meet up with Kevin and Kim. Thankfully they got there before us and found a campsite. We spent some time catching up and talking about the new plan. After some good laughs, we crashed for the night.
The next day we woke up early and drove to the Backpackers Office and applied for the permit via email and in 30 minutes we got a call. We got the permit!!
When we got back to the RV to tell Kim the good news, she made a delicious breakfast with coffee and everything. Things were looking really good and we were all in high spirits. On our way out, we left my car in the parking lot and started heading to the North Rim. What we did not prepare for was a 6-hour drive to the North Rim.
On our way, we stopped in Flagstaff to get a bite to eat and buy food and any missed necessities for the big trip ahead.
On the way to the North Rim, we saw these amazing rock formations that we had to park and check them out, the sky was full of stars, and we were full of smiles. We got back in the RV and headed into the darkness, no service, just us, and the road.
As we started to get closer, we saw lots of deer in the road and bison watching us from the darkness. As soon as we parked, we starting packing our bags and preparing for an early start.
We started at the trailhead around 6:30 am and hiked 14+miles to Bright Angel campground. The view was incredible as we descended in the canyon.
We covered a lot of ground on our first day and were blown away from views every step of the way.
We arrived at the Bright Angel Campground around 5 pm, set up our tents, and surveyed the area. It was a beautiful campground, the river was 20ft from our campsite, which was relaxing to listen to while looking at the stars from our tents.
We hit the trail and hike 7.5 miles to Indian Garden. On our way, we crossed over a suspension bridge over the Colorado River. With views in every direction, we were checking everything out; there was so much to look at. The water looked intense and the landscape was like a painting.
Once we got to Indian Garden, there was a ton of deer that seemed carefree while we were setting up our tents. There was plenty of shade from all the trees and felt a lot cooler than the previous campground. After we got all set up, we prepared our packs for a short hike to Plateau Point for the evening and the views were out of this world.
Once it was dark, we turned on our headlamps and headed back to camp. When we got there, the deer were still there hanging out right by our tents. It was pretty cool seeing these gorgeous animals not have a care in the world, feeling so comfortable around us. As we were filling up our water containers, we noticed a momma dear and her fawn laying down. While preparing Nescafe, we saw the fawn feeding on the mother. We were fully embraced in nature. After the nightcap, we watched the stars and went to sleep. When it was time to get up, we got packed and hit the trail.
The trail starts off flat and then it’s all switchbacks from there. We took a break and ate PB&Js while admiring the view of the trail.
The last mile or so all we could talk about was food and where we should eat afterward. Enchiladas? Ice cream? It all sounded good.
We completed on the South Rim just before noon and were feeling super stoked. Our plan b turned out to be a great success despite the challenges of planning as we go, I’m thankful we were able to come together and make it happen.