Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Change of Plans

My son cannot make the Grand Canyon trip so I'm left without a partner. I called Todd without much hope. He has to work as I expected. I asked a co-worker who was interested but he has responsibilities also.

I knew this may be a possibility so I researched PLBs (personal locator beacons) a few weeks ago. PLBs are reliable but do not give the ability to explain an emergency. The device will send a distress signal to a satellite containing the latitude and longitude of the emergency so a search and rescue team or plane can respond. The rescue party has no clue as to the details of the emergency until they arrive on the scene. A better option in some ways is a satellite phone.

Saturday I phoned a local business to check on renting a phone. Fortunately, a phone is available at a rate of $8 per day which is the going rate. I asked about the per minute rate and was surprised to learn it's only $1 per minute. Most advertisements I've seen recently have listed $1.69 or $2 per minute. I reserved a phone. Originally I planned on taking the phone only for emergencies but now I'm rethinking my plan. I could and will phone Julie simply to check on her and assure her I'm OK.

I have my pack ready with the exception of a tooth brush and water. I've calculated my starting weight and it will be 58 to 60 pounds. This is more than I want but everything is necessary including an MP3 player, a paperback book, a small book weighing only 3 ounces, and spare batteries for a headlamp. The bulk of the weight is food for six days and water for the first two days. By the morning of the second day the weight will be down to about 50 pounds. The fourth day will be the longest and will be another heavy day since two days of water will be needed. I should climb out of the canyon with about 32 pounds.

I had planned a short day on the sixth and final day so we would be home in the evening with ample time to rest before my son's departure the next day. Now I think I may spend the last night at the river. I'll get home late but Julie will be in Amarillo so there's no reason to rush.

At first I was really disappointed my son couldn't make the trip but I've readjusted my expectations and I'm looking forward to a solo trip.

3 Comments:

Blogger Kathryn Grace said...

Hello Paul. I've been away awhile and dropped by to catch up a bit. My first thought on reading this is, "You can get cell phone reception in the Grand Canyon?" Never occurred to me there would be towers down there.

I pray all goes wonderfully. Perhaps we're never too old to experience a vision quest.

10/04/2011 07:52:00 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Good luck Paul. My word verification for this post is "blest." You are.

10/04/2011 10:51:00 AM  
Blogger Alex Pendragon said...

Enjoy, but above all, please be safe, my friend.

10/04/2011 06:02:00 PM  

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