Friday, May 2, 2008

Grand Canyon, AZ (Sun.4/26-Tue.4/28) part2

Thanks to Levi for his post on our Grand Canyon overnight hiking trip. He did a great job. It was such a big event, I had to capture a few things from dad's perspective. A lot of pictures this time - believe me I trimmed the number way back!

In renting the equipment, the prices seemed quite reasonable: $8 for a tent, $7 for sleeping bag – these prices are much better than buying. We rented on Sunday, left on Monday morning and returned Tuesday afternoon – this is 3 days, according to them and the prices are all per day. You know how Jesus rose on the 3rd day, but it was less than 48 hours after dying (Fri night to Sunday morning) – it's alright for Jesus to do this and call it 3 days, but I didn't like the rental place pulling this on us. It turned out, the equipment was fine it was just slightly disappointing for a $50 rental to become $150 so quickly.

Packing the bags, I was getting a bit worried. I knew we'd make it down to the bottom. It was the getting back up again with all the gear that I was concerned about. Starting out early, we missed most of the heat by getting to the bottom soon after 11:00.

starting the day: bright eyed (except that we're looking into the sun) and bushy tailed at 6:30 a.m.

Several people asked how old Shae was – sometimes just in admiration other times to gage how soon they could take their child.

Shae and the Canyon. Possibly my favorite picture, and taken by Elan - thanks E!

Hikers are very friendly. It's one of those things where two total strangers can meet but they have something in common that connects them (wouldn't it be nice if this were true for drivers meeting other drivers) – we especially met a couple ladies who were quite experienced at this who wanted to know the skinny on each of the boys.

Our first good view on the way down of the Colorado

The boys sure loved the water. Why kids tolerate cold water better than adults I don't know, but we proved it once again here.

Swimming is not allowed because the water is too cold, so we called it aggressive full-body under-water splashing

Our camp site at Bright Angel Campground

A couple of our goals for this year long trip were to teach the boys hard work – not always taking the easy way out, to appreciate God's beautiful scenery from the huge mountains to the delicate flowers. I think the hard work hasn't been addressed very well so far on our trip, but we were now going to make up for lost time.

One of the best moments as a dad was seeing how hard these boys worked to get back up to the rim. A 9 mile hike, 1 mile elevation in the heat.

96 deg. in the shade in the Canyon

Not just how hard they worked but how they treated each other. We had a Team Nelson pep talk at the beginning of the hike up where we all agreed that we only going to share encouraging words with each other. We took turns giving examples of what an encouraging word sounded like, a discouraging word and a discouraging word masked as an encouraging one – like “you don't sweat much for a fat girl”, that kind of thing. To my discredit, the boys were very good at this, they weren't strangers to sarcasm or negative undertones from their parents or siblings. We all agreed to be positive the whole trip and they really did it. When one person was dragging a bit the others came around them and really genuinely encouraged them (and it wasn't always dad lagging behind crying for help).

I discovered our credit card didn't work when returning the camping gear. Kim hunted it down and found that the card was suspended because we had made multiple purchases from the same vendor – the outfitting store. These were all legitimate purchases: the water backpacks and the gear rental, but Kim also found there were 4 purchases at a Victoria's Secret in California totaling ~$900 and a liquor store bill of ~$250. Believe me these were not our purchases, but someone was having quite the party with our credit card number. We each had our cards still, so someone was able to make the purchases with just the numbers. Kim, I think we should go to research the crime scenes... honey? I was kidding really!

It was an incredibly wonderful hard time with my boys. The Grand Canyon, the new best hike ever – move over Angel's Landing!

This one I liked - it's not "watch for falling rock" no, it's a much more dynamic warning than that!

56,785 steps, but who's counting?... Shae's step counter at the end of day 2

Spring is the time for desert flowers... the rim. Kobe is counting the days 'til he can go...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic 2 day hike ......
very few people or young-uns complete such a grueling ordeal.
the kids will remember it forever.
great description of the 'pain-n-glory' Levi.
you guys are part mountain goat!
Lotsa Love,
Bapa & Arla