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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grand Canyon, AZ top to bottom and then back up again

Well I’ve been thinking about what I’m gonna write for the past two days. Throughout the whole hike all I could think about was how the fuck am I gonna write about this. I think my mind eventually got narrowed down to a bunch of facebook statuses, that weren’t even worth writing when I finally reached the top. I think to sum it down to two main thoughts it would be:

1. Will I make it? For the first time in my life I had actual doubt whether I would make it back to the top. Well, maybe I actually mean make it to the top in the time I had estimated it should take me. Would I be able to finish the hike in the two days I had set as a goal. And I succeeded, but it hurts, it fucking hurts. The reason I kept on going was on the way down I saw a couple that was walking back up, probably in their late fifties, and they were having fun and enjoying themselves. On my way back all I could think about was, “shiiiit, if that old lady could do it, I can!”. But then I would break down ”but she wasn’t carrying the weight I’m carrying”. Damn, it hurt.

2. I think I can, I think I can, I think I can. I had to imagine myself back in Jordan, at the end of our hike, when we had that little hill that was maybe 6 miles away from us. Back then I decided that I wouldn’t stop until I reach that hill, and then we can call it a night, “NO, STOP, TILL HILLSIDE” I was chanting to myself (according to no sleep till Brooklyn, by the Beastie Boys). So once again I started to chant, again and again. Until I stopped. And then I consoled myself that in Jordan it was all flat, and here it’s all uphill. I understood how much of a difference it is to hike with people and to hike by yourself. The competition aspect, and if not competitiveness then the social aspect of going on for other people if not for yourself. In my defense I should say that I had 11 blisters, and 5 of them had exploded on the first day already (that’s the downhill part).

3. Well I thought of another one, so I’ll put it in as another main thought. LIE. I think I consciously lied to myself so many times in the past two days, I almost feel like a dishonest person. “there is nothing beyond the 2 mile point ahead (even though it’s only a quarter of the way through) “but I know that it’s only a quarter of the way, and we still have another 7 miles to go after that”, “THERE IS NOTHING BEYOND THIS POINT! FINISH THESE 2 MILES AND WE’LL SEE WHAT COMES NEXT”. “ghollum, ghollum”. Then I reach the 2 mile point, happy happy joy joy! Then I just erase everything I had already done and I start all over. And repeat, and again and again. But you know what, it got me back to the top.

The truth is that it was so much fun! I truly and deeply enjoyed everything. I enjoyed the pain, because I got through it. I enjoyed the downhill because it got me to the most beautiful creek I’ve ever earned. I enjoyed the uphill, because it brought me back to my car, which I appreciated oh so much. I enjoyed the views, because they’re the fucking grand canyon, and I enjoyed the heat, and meeting as little people on the way as possible, and the lizards, and the snake I ran in to, and the little shed that gave me the most enjoyable lunch on a hot summer July day in the grand canyon, and I even enjoyed the tortilla with beef stick and mustard. What I did not enjoy, maybe the only thing, was when I got stuck on the ridgeline in the middle of a huge thunderstorm. The problem was not the thunderstorm, it was the company that came with it. ahh shit, was he annoying! (Facebook status alert) “the only thing worse than getting stuck in a thunderstorm in a small shelter on a ridgeline with 40 mph winds, is if the company you have is an annoying fuck who can’t talk about anything expect for his wilderness school trainings, and has an annoying voice too!” So that was probably the worst part of these past two days. But the most fun was definitely reaching the bottom of the Grand Canyon. First of all because it was beautiful, but most of all it was that I was all by myself with this wonderful cold creek, in which I could skinny dip. And after skinny dipping in the creek, I said to myself “fuck it, there’s no one here anyways” so I just kept walking around camp naked for the rest of the evening and the morning after that too.

What else can I say? It was a lot of fun. What’s next? Good question, I think I going to Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Arches and Moab. Some real desert for now, but I think I’ll stick to day hikes for a little, cause my feet really do hurt.

I still must tell of my adventures in Albuquerque, NM ( I finally learned how to spell that!) but I think that’ll come later today. For now this is good.


  1. you could be tortilla's uncle!

  2. Incredible! It is interesting to hear your inner-dialogue while hiking/struggling. I have always wondered if others' is anything like mine.