Today was the Grand Canyon.

We made it to the South Rim at about 9:30. Prior to leaving Flagstaff, we grabbed coffee and breakfast at Macy’s. A simple 2 room cafĂ© where they roast their own beans. The Americano and the breakfast croissant were very good.

When we got to The Grand Canyon, we decided to take the Grandview trail to Horseshoe Mesa. It is roughly 3+ miles from the trail head and it approximately 3000 feet lower in elevation from the parking lot where we parked the Path Finder. I borrowed some hiking sticks.

The views directly below my feet, had at some points 1000-foot drops. The trail is roughly 110 years old and was originally used for hauling copper ore up on donkey back. That said, some of the trail sections are simply old tree trunks mounted into the canyon wall. Behind the dam formed by the attached tree trunks, dirt and ravel comprise the footpath. Pretty bizarre, especially on the return hike.

Going down, was extremely difficult on my knees, even using the hiking sticks. I cannot imagine how much more difficult it would have been without the sticks.

We made it to Coconino Saddle, which is one mile from the trailhead, and stopped for a trail bar.
After this intermission, we quickly came upon an area called The Cobbles, stones were arranged by humans at some point. They must be on at least 20% grade, and there were some many switchbacks, I lost count. The Cobbles are very slippery and conducive to ankle twisting.

After two miles, we made it to Horseshoe Saddle It is very flat, shaped like a horse shoe and I believe that it has 2000 foot drops on some of its many sides. We also came upon what must heave been a cabin 100 or so years ago. It was made with red rocks arranged like bricks. It ended up looking like a primitive Hogan.

We moseyed along past Horseshoe Mesa and down into a drainage. Following the drainage we found a well used trail that was nearly non-existent at some points. At the end of the scary trail that overlooked a 1000 foot or so drop to the Cottonwood River. This lead us to the Cave of Domes.

The Cave of Domes has an entrance where there used to be a door, the surrounding brick work looked identical to the structure at Horseshoe Mesa. Once inside, there was a series of low openings with the roofs opening up to standing height. The first domes had graffiti going back to 1800. When I got to the end (for me) we were in a room that had a 30 foot ceiling.

We got back to the car at about 4:30.
I have never kicked it as hard on any hike in my life.

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