catch up on part 1 if needed!!the drive was pretty easy. here to kingman then on 66. once in kingman we met up with other people from our group. then we had to find this backward ass road that was the scariest road i have ever been on in my life. it was sooo pitch black dark and it was tiny 2-lane road. it was 60 miles long and there was a threat of animals jumping out at any moment. i was so glad mike was driving and richard was in the front seat. however i was never so alert on a road while not driving in my life. we finally made it to the parking lot about 1130p and started to figure out sleeping. mike had brought a chair to sleep in outside and richard was able to put down the backseat so we could stretch out. it was the most uncomfortable night of sleep i think i have ever had. pretty much no one slept that night. especially since we were getting up at 4am to get ready for the hike.
|the morning view.|
the 1st 1.5 miles were the worst! it was straight down switchbacks that was a knee killer. once we made it through that it was much better. im not really sure what i expected, but i dont think it was a trail like that. the whole rest of the way it was gravel and sand and super uneven. you literally had to watch everywhere you walked. but it was beautiful in the canyon.
|just a little way down.|
|the view from the bottom of the switchbacks, told you it was steep!|
|the beautifully random tree we saw on the way down.|
i was ready for a nap after all of this. but our site was directly in the sun and richard was ready to rock. the other group had gone a little bit ahead while we finished setting up. we decided to meet up with them at havasu falls to cool off and hang out. now something to keep in mind. anytime you want "to go somewhere to hang out" you must hike there. this fall was about a half mile away down a pretty steep path. it was beautiful though, so worth it.
mooney falls was just as beautiful! we didnt go all the way down because we were way too sore, so we just hung out at the top. plus we were pretty high up. we stayed for a long while just chatting and listening to the water.
|dang thats a long way down!|
it finally started to get pretty dark and i decided i needed should go to the bathroom before i had to use my headlamp to get around. thought it was a good plan. except it got real dark real fast and i could not find where i was going! the scariest part though was crossing that little bridge on the way back to the camp site!
|our campsite in the morning.|
we hung out for quite awhile when they were sleeping. it was only 8am, and we had to experience freeze dried breakfast. again i was pleasantly surprised. the eggs really tasted like eggs! they were pretty good.
|good thing he wore a red shirt!|
|"will you marry me?'|
|she said yes!!|
|you can still see the roots from the trees!|
we woke up on our final day and i was finally not feeling sore! this was a big win. andrews parents had decided the previous day they were not going to hike out. i think there might have been a hell no or 2 in there. they instead were going to helicopter out of the village, genius idea. we all decided to make the trip up to the village. i mean really what else did we have to do haha! mike and andrew powered up the crazy hills from the campsite to the village with their packs so his parents didnt have to while the rest of us lagged a little behind. the crazy amount of miles we had been doing the last 2 days were really starting to catch up with us.
once we got up to the village we decided to stay and eat while his parents went to check in for the helicopter. they had about an hour wait, which was nothin compared to some of the wait times we had been hearing. i finally got to try the indian tacos! they were pretty good all things considered. let me explain. an indian taco is a huge piece of frybread topped with ground beef, cheese, lettuce, and tomato. they are also about as big as my head! i was starving and couldnt even finish the whole thing. i have to say the restaurant in the village was actually pretty decent. i mean nothing like the outside world, but at that point you are pretty friggin hungry for real food. richard and i decided to head to the store on the other side of town after lunch to get some ice cream because it was so darn hot.
right on the dot andrew was knocking on our tent the next morning with his headlamp shining through. we had a lot to do in a short amount of time, definitely not leaving time for a snooze button. we had laid out our clothes the previous night and tried to get as many things together as possible because it was so dark in the morning. i began rolling everything up but was having the biggest trouble with the sleeping bag. i was determined to get it on my own. everybody had to carry their own weight. richard however was really struggling with the his bag, the sleeping pad, and the tent. mike, lora, and i had packed his bag on the way down and he hadnt paid attention when he was unpacking to where everything fit. i kept telling him he had to figure it out, he kept telling me he was going to wait for mike to help him. mike came over after packing all of his own things and helped richard anyway. we finished up breakfast and started to make our way up to the village.
the guys were definitely blazing the trail up front while stephanie and i hung back a bit which was perfectly fine with both of us. we kept saying this is a marathon not a sprint. (that is such a funny saying to me now that i do that :) ) we made it to the village failry easily and knew those were some of the hardest hills we had for awhile. stephanie was able to unload the trash we had to hike out and we were all able to fill up our camelbacks to ensure we had plenty of water. we started again fairly quickly because we didnt want to lose our momentum. it was so quite in the canyon and the village not even close to dawn yet, and still wearing our headlamps we moved on.
the rest of the hike to the bottom of the switchbacks seemed so much faster than the one down. we were on our own for most of the way until a little over 1/2 through when we finally started to see new hikers come down. i spent the majority of this part on my own, and it was kinda nice. i was able to get lost in my own thoughts. andi was able to dream about real food, and showers and my bed and air conditioning. i was definitely ready to get home. everyone met at the bottom of the switchbacks to eat something and prepare for the huge climb ahead. right before i found the guys i passed a group that payed the best compliment anyone ever could at that moment. "wow, you look so fresh!" literally the best thing i could have heard as i was exhausted and not sure how i was going to make up the hardest/last part.
finally it was time to just tackle them, we had all agreed to stop if we needed to and if you did to make sure you lean on something rather than just stopping in the middle of the path. we started out with a jumbled mess. i was trying to stay middle pack knowing the boys would probably be in the front while a few would probably still be behind me. my goal was to get to the top without stopping! andrew stayed back a bit to make sure stephanie was ok, while mike, dale, and richard led the way with me close behind. soon richard was dropping down and i passed him! finally my hardcore cardio was working for me.
|i totally beat the rest of them!|
andrews dad had made the trip back from peach springs about 100 miles away to pick up andrew, stephanie, and mike to head up to their cabin in utah. we took our final group pictures at top and hobbled into our cars. it was amazing to sit in a comfortable chair with air conditioning and no shoes. i had a HUGE blister on the inside of my right foot right on the edge. it was not pretty and pretty painful, but so worth the war wound.