Thursday, February 25, 2010

Two Weeks, Two Days

Two weeks and two days of anticipation before the start of six days of adventure in the Grand Canyon.

I began planning the Royal Arch Route trip about 7 AM on January 1, 2009, as I was talking with a ranger at the Grand Canyon while waiting for the Backcountry Information Center to open. I first heard of this route in May of 2008 when a couple became lost for a few days and search and rescue became involved.

Final preparations are underway. I began dehydrating food last weekend. This weekend I plan on purchasing the rope needed for a rappel, two canisters of fuel and some additional food.

One concern is the weather. The trail head is two hours drive west of Grand Canyon Village over forest service roads that become impassable after heavy snows or rain. I'll check on the condition of the road a few days early and try to change the permit for another route if needed. Hopefully the roads will be fine. I want to do this trip.

We've had more snow this winter than usual and work at the University has been unusually heavy. As a result the average miles per day I walk has declined. But, I'm good for the trip. A few days ago I began doing squats with weights and can feel the consequences in my upper legs. A good feeling.

I've never done any physical preparation for other backpacking trips but this time I'll be going with guys in their thirties. Six months ago I recruited three coworkers for the trip. Two canceled recently but my son decided to go so there will be three of us.

Julie is flying to Dallas to visit her children while we are in the canyon. This will be only the second backpacking trip in the last fifteen years that she hasn't been with me. A few years back I did a solo trip in the Wichita Mountains without her. It was OK but not as enjoyable as it would have been had she been there.

In spite of the fact that she won't be with me, this promises to be a great trip.


Blogger Alex Pendragon said...

She's going to be with you, my friend.

2/25/2010 09:33:00 PM  

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