Somewhere in northern Arizona – 6:30am: Per my customary alarm, the Circle of Life wakes me from my slumber, and so begins breaking down camp.
I got the Breakfast Skillet going and started taking down my tent while breakfast heated itself up. (I liken freeze dried meals to investment income. It works without me doing anything.) I also mowed through my granola as I had zero interest in carrying that weight up.
8:30am: Belly’s full, we broke camp and said goodbye to the beauty of our campground and the canyon. And thus, we began the ~12 mile journey back to the top. The day’s forecast couldn’t have been any better. Probably in the 50’s when we left the bottom, I was in shorts and a t-shirt as you can see above. The canyon was in the shade nearly the entire time which kept us cool and able to move fast. The first bit was the hike worst as we had to trudge through the sand. Once we were past the registration office, it wasn’t too bad.
12:06pm: I reached the top first and nearly got blown back down as the winds at the trailhead we’re howling at over 20mph. The group only stopped once, around the 6.5 mile mark, to fuel up for the final push. My second to last PB&J hit the spot. The wind started just before the switchbacks, when we lost the canyon walls for protection. It was hitting us from the side which didn’t make it a full headwind, but definitely kept us on our toes. The worst parts were when it would kick up dust and get it into our eyes. Luckily, the switchbacks near the top are tucked away and were out of the main wind gust paths. This helped me cruise to the finish line.
Once at the top, the joy of taking off my pack couldn’t be measured. The only things that hurt are my feet and my shoulders. Everything else feels pretty good (as of writing this… Friday will probably suck. Update: Friday wasn’t thhhhaaattt bad.). Micah, Caleb, Greg, and I had to wait for Adam and Austin as they look a little slower pace than the rest of us. Not a worry. When they finally emerged, we did a quick group photo right when a wind gust decided to hit the top and then we all quickly hopped into the cars.
1:43: In the car and driving back with only two things on our mind. Burgers and beers.
4:45: Caleb makes reservations at Zinburger for 5:30.
5:30: On the dot and by the second, we walk into Zinburger. I’m not sure what magic Caleb was harnessing, but it was impressive. The meal, my first there, was delicious and was gone in about 5 minutes – burger and fries both. I think the server was a little unnerved at my consumption speed but who was I to care.
An aside: I ran into friends from UofA on the first day when they were coming out. Totally random but a tremendous place to have a reunion. These things happen to me, though. I ran into cousins in Yosemite National Park on the way down from Half Dome. Nothing better than seeing friends and family in the great outdoors.
Missed a prior day? You can read Day 1 here and Day 2 here.
I’ll be writing up a couple more Havasupai articles about what I packed, learned, things to do down there, and maybe a few more depending on my time. Stay tuned and tell like-minded people about my blog. I don’t have a large marketing budget powering this!
Until next time adventurers, take care and be safe.
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