Hayduke Trail Day 32: Tale of the Bright Angel Trail

Daily Neat Beat
Day 32
Total Miles: 9.9
Cumulative Miles: 562.3
Map of hike down Bright Angel Trail, Hayduke Trail Day 32

I can’t believe we are sitting here in a cantina at the bottom of the Grand Canyon sipping lemonade. It feels luxurious and I feel like I won the lottery getting an overnight camping spot at Bright Angel Campground in the bottom of the Grand Canyon. 

View of the Grand Canyon from the top of the Bright Angel Trail

A five star hotel and a martini couldn’t pamper me more than drinking this lemonade in a plastic cup, and staying overnight in our spanking new tent with zippers that work….

Drinking lemonade at the bottom of the Grand Canyon

Our plan adjusted with the weather, busted equipment and permit demands for going into the backcountry in the Grand Canyon. And probably our tired feet which were still beat up from hiking, or more like wading, for 29.3 miles in a day through Paria Canyon.

We spent a few days shuttling vehicles, ordering a tent overnight from amazon, buying new shoes, and going to the Grand Canyon permit office. Our original plan had us hiking 29 miles down the Bright Angel Trail and up the North Kaibab Trail in one day because it is next to impossible to get an overnight permit at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.  But next to impossible is not impossible.  The Ranger said “it looks like we have a cancellation on Saturday at Bright Angel” and we said “we’ll take it”.  
Ray and I on the Bright Angel Trail

It took us about 3 1/2 hours to hike the 9.9 miles and 4,380 feet in elevation loss to the bottom of the canyon and the Bright Angel Campground. We hike down through the geologic formations that are so familiar to us they envelope us like a favorite blanket. 

Feeling at home in the Grand Canyon as we look up at the Hermit Shale and the Coconino Sandstone from Indian Gardens.

It is so great to be in the canyon again. We set up our new Big Agnes Copper Spur 3 Platinum tent up and it feels HUGE and wasn’t cheap but is very lightweight for two people (2 pounds 15 oz)

Our new Big Agnes Copper Spur 3 Platinum tent in Bright Angel Campground at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.

Our new Palace. But, hey, we use a tent and are out a lot so maybe it is worth it for us. We will surely test it. We spend the afternoon not doing much of anything and the temperature climbs to 103F. Ok, time to go back for another lemonade…..

A thermometer at the campground shows the temperature to be 103 degrees F. Whew..
What do you do when it is 103 degrees F and you are already at camp? Take a nap of course.

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