View from the start of S. Kaibab.
Wednesday I finally got into the canyon to do some running.
I have done some in and out trips to the river but never a loop. Some friends of mine have done and recommend the loop run where the runner starts at the parking area for the S. Kaibab trail, runs down the S. Kaibab, through Phantom Ranch, up the Bright Angel Trail and then back across the South Rim trail to the car. When you total up the miles, it comes to about 25 miles (give or take a few).
I decided that wednesday was as good as any to do the loop. I started running from my car at 3 pm to the S. Kaibab Trail. It took a few minutes to get to the rim from where the car was parked.
Running down the S. Kaibab was really fun. With so much downhill, you just cruise right along. The only thing to watch out for is wiping out on all of the steps and beating up your legs. This trail is STEEP.
First view of the river.
Phantom Ranch and the Colorado River.
Bridge next to Phantom Ranch.
I reached the water stop at Phantom Ranch in 1:20 from the car, picked up water, used the bathroom and was on my way to the Bright Angel Trail.
Low on the Bright Angel Trail I ran into a Sheep that was extremely tame. I was standing right next to him to get these photos.
Heading up the Bright Angel Trail.
Indian Gardens, part way up Bright Angel Trail. Another stop for water and bathroom.
Lots of wildlife. This deer was just as tame as the sheep I ran into earlier.
Almost beat sunset to the rim. I still had about a half mile to go when the color left the canyon.
I made it to the south rim again after 4 hours from my car. I ran the whole way up the canyon and I was pretty psyched. I didn't expect to be able to run all of the Bright Angel Trail because I knew the end was steep but I felt really good (I won't lie...I was really tired and working hard) and kept cranking along up the trail. I was really glad to hit the rim and have the flat Rim Trail to follow back to my car. When I got back to the car it was 8 pm (the run was about 5 hours). What a great experience. I am really excited to get back in there some more this spring leading up to Hole to Hump. The canyon is a very special place.