Monday, July 09, 2007

A Grand Adventure

We just returned from our 2007 grand adventure, Arizona. We traveled from the low point to the high point in Arizona. It was a great time. We had 9 travellers, 4 of which completed the entire task. This task was to start at the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, travel down to the Colorado River, and back up the Soth Rim, a hike of 24 miles, 6000 feet of descent, and 5000 feet of ascent, then ride a bike 79 miles to the Arizona Snow Bowl, and finally climb Arizona's highpoint (Humphrey's Peak at 12,633 feet).

Now I'll dive in and give you the gory details of our trip. We arrived at the North Rim on the 4th of July, and enjoyed the spectacular scenery from the top. Here's Charlie with our goal in the background, the South Rim. We have a long way to go!

Jeff and Stacey, same view.

That night we camped at the North Rim. We enjoyed a delicious spaghetti dinner (carb load?), then went to bed around 10:00 pm. After a short 2 hours of sleep, we got up at midnight to prepare for the first leg.

Here we are, starting at 1:00 am, to beat the heat! The views were a little bit dark, as we didn't have daylight until we were almost to the bottom of the canyon, 5 hours later.

We rested up at Phantom Ranch, took off our boots, and tried to dry out our feet a little bit (we had a small run in with a creek in the dark).

Then, it was across the bridge over the Colorado River, and up the Bright Angel trail. We finally started seeing other people about 4 miles from the top. We were pretty tired at this point; some of us delirious. We were grateful to see that our drivers (Dad, Joseph, and Stacey) had also made the 4 hour drive AROUND the canyon, and were ready to get us to the campground.

We all completed the "death march". Here is Dave and I at the top. We were glad that no one had to be lifeflighted out!

Here is David resting up and waiting for the rest of the group at the top!

Day 2 started a little bit later. The bikers had a few false starts...we changed 3 tubes before the event even began.

But, begin it did, and they headed out of the Grand Canyon and up to Humphrey's Peak.

Megan, Kristin, and Stacey served as water support and videographers for this leg. I think we had more fun than the cyclers. We waited at rest stops, eating cookies and taking pictures of ourselves. In between, we refilled camelbacks, videoed the riders, and yelled out supportive (hopefully) comments. They had a tough ride, but claimed it was fun. I don't know about that! Here's Joseph and Charlie.

Lunch at a rest stop.

Here's Joseph climbing a hill, and passed out at a rest stop.

Jeff pulling into the finish line!

John, Charlie, and David are still strong after 79 miles! Good job, guys!

The water crew is still strong, as well.

Megan, Kristin, and Stacey: the closest we came to riding this thing.

That night we stayed at the Ski Lift Lodge at the base of Humphrey's Peak. The scenery was amazing, and we were all excited to go up the the highpoint the next day.

Every night the question would come up, "Where's Joseph?"

Oh yeah, on the phone with Kathryn, again!

Eight participants summitted Humphrey's Peak. It was a great hike: 9 miles round trip felt like a breeze after the aforementioned death march. From the top, we should have been able to see the Grand Canyon, but smoke from a fire blocked out some of the distant scenery. It was still beautiful.

We would have enjoyed the summit block a little bit more if there hadn't been so many flies. They were really quite pesky. John is modelling the look we all wore at the top.

Kristin on the way down.

We scooted on down, and drove over to St George to meet Mom, Anna, and Pat at Pat's condo. We had a pizza dinner, and waffles for breakfast the next day.

David and Charlie has flights back home Sunday afternoon, so they made a quick getaway with one carload early that morning. Wildfires near the interstate caused them to take a long detour, but they still made their flights. Joseph also drove on to Boise that afternoon. Anna and Pat left for their delayed honeymoon to Norway Monday morning. And so our party had to separate.

There were many records set on this trip. Here are a few.
Longest bicycle ride at 85 miles for 2 riders (Charlie and Jeff). (David has done 112 miles, and John did 90 before this trip.)
Highest altitude at 12,633 feet (Kristin)
First state highpoint (Kristin)
Longest day hike at 24 miles (David, Megan, Charlie, John, Jeff, Kristin)
Most gatorade drunk in a 24 hour period (I think this may be true of all of us, we really guzzled the stuff!)
Most calories expended in a 3 day period (David, John, Charlie, Jeff)
Two trips driving around the Grand Canyon in 3 days (Dad, Joseph, Stacey)

Most bikes in the back of a trailor.

Here is a final shot of most of the group. Thanks for getting the best side of us, Kristin!

We had a great 5 days, and will miss being together! Thanks for a GRAND ADVENTURE!


Hoopes Family said...

Congrats on starting the blog. It looks very pleasant, and loverly. Thanks for the good time this last week, and we shall be seeing you soon.
We need to get serious about the llamas.

karen sorensen said...

Your new blog looks great. It looks like you are having a great time. I am really glad you are having fun and you look great.
I hope to see you soon after you get home.

Mason and Erika said...

I'm thinking I need a nap after reading all that! Sounds exhausting, but also like so much fun.

S. Hoopes said...

Thanks for including me in one of the records, it made me feel special! I had so much fun with everyone. Probably I couldn't do much even if I wasn't pregnant right now, maybe Humphreys?? Who knows... Anyways, very nice summary. I will probably just link to your blog so we don't have to write a big summary on ours too. Is that cheating?? :)

The Wyler Family said...

WOW! What an incredible trip! It looks and sounds like you guys had a wonderful time. It was fun to read about it. This sounds like our kind of adventure.

The Horn Family said...

It looks like you had a great time. Your adventure seems like it'd be quite fun to do, exhausting, but fun.

Steffie said...

Well, you guys haven't changed a bit! Thanks for starting up your blog! It is so great to see what everyone is up to even when we are so far apart! This makes me want to go climb a mountain! Well, maybe in a few weeks once #5 lightens my load! lol! Take care and keep it up! love, the sarver's

Carla Harper said...

The blog is great! It was awesome to hear from you. I look forward to reading more. What a great way to keep in touch.
Take care,


traci said...

I just found your blog. It's kind of ironic because I'm having trouble finding someone to watch Brenden next week and Jeff joking said this evening "call the Hoopes".

I told him that wasn't funny because we are really missing you guys!

Sounds like you are having a grand time. I'll see you in September if not before.

Anna-Lisa said...

Congrats, Megan! You always find time to get things done! I know this trip is one that the 9 of you will never forget. Anna-Lisa, Pat and I were so glad that we could meet you in St. George. You guys are troopers. Mom

Tiffany said...

I am so excited for you to have started a family blog. This was so fun to see pictures of the big adventure we all felt a part of preparing for. You guys are awesome! Congrats! I'm so glad everyone was safe and warn out. Those are the signs of a true good adventure! Miss you guys! Tiff