Wednesday, July 08, 2009

The Hike

Our hike was the under-the-rim trail through Bryce Canyon. It is a 22.9 mile trail from Rainbow Point to Bryce Point. We camped for two nights and split the hike up into three days. This was the longest we've ever backpacked. Previously, we've only done one night. So, this really wasn't much longer. But increasing by only one night adds a whole new element of excitement because you spend one entire day totally away from civilization. This was also the first time that we had to collect water from creeks along the way. We did it with a water filter-pump that we rented from the University. So far no giardia has reared its head! (Thanks goodness!)

Rainbow Point

Rainbow Point

The first day we took a shuttle from the the main part of the park to Rainbow Point. We hiked 8 miles to our campsite called Natural Bridge. We thought we would get rained on because we could see a storm in the distance. There were ominous clouds, and threatening lightening. But it passed without ever raining on us. It was nice to watch it without being in it.

Along the way to Natural Bridge.

Campsite, 1st night.

We were all by ourselves at this campsite and I was a little scared of bears, psychopaths lurking in the woods, lightening felling tall trees that would then crush us in our tent. I think I was just a little insecure about us being alone in the wilderness with no quick way out if something were to happen. But it all turned out okay. :o)

Hiking, second day.

The next day we hiked 11 miles to our next camp site. This is the farthest we'd ever hiked with our big packs on (as opposed to day packs). I took a nap as soon as we put our tent up. We did get rained and hailed on (what is it with the hail here?!) a little in the afternoon. But! We were prepared! (Lessons learned!) We had ponchos for us and trash bags for our backpacks. So, nothing got soaking wet!

View from Yellow Creek campsite, 2nd night

Here, I have to brag a little. The third day, we had to hike 5.2 miles back to Bryce Point where our car was. We were uber motivated because we planned to clean up and then gorge ourselves at a nearby restaurant. Also, I was ready to be back where a quick response is available in the event of an emergency. (This is what happens when you're in the medical field and you live in the medical center. You're thoughts are frequently focused on how quickly the nearest emergency response can reach you if something happens.) So we hiked those miles, uphill, with packs in 2.5 hours! We were hustling! And then, as planned, we proceeded to gorge ourselves. Fun times! We're hoping for many more hikes before we have to leave Utah.


Vanessa Rogers said...

Those are some gorgeous pictures.

Jim Hamilton said...

I am impressed.

Someone has no doubt suggested that you name your blog, but here's my suggestion: The Bryce Canyon Conquerors

We miss you guys!