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Bright Angel Campground

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  Arches National Park
      The Great Alcohol Search
      Devils Garden - Arches
      Devils Garden - Hiking
  Grand Canyon
      The Plunge
      Bright Angel Campground
      Clear Creek Trail
      The Ascent
      Indian Garden Campground
      Tonto West Hike
      The Great Snake Battle
      The Final Ascent
  The Narrows
      Gearing Up
      The Awakening
      The Hike In
      Pee / Poo
      The Hike Out
      Places We Missed
      Meteor Crater
      Airport Mesa
      Thunder Mountain

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Donkys on the trail When you're camping in the main corridor of the Grand Canyon, you have several options. You can ride down on donkeys and stay at the Phantom Ranch Lodge. You can hike down, but send your gear down on a donkey and sleep on a bed in the lodge. Or you can do what we did and hike down with all your gear and camp out. Bright Angel Campground, the one we chose to stay at, is only a half mile from Phantom Ranch. As consummate backpackers, we never seriously considered the donkeys. However, the effort of hiking is a little disheartening when others have an easier way to the destination. It's like another backpacking trip we took in WV where we hiked 12 miles with full packs only to camp next to a road. It defeats the whole "get away from civilization" attitude that pushes us to the woods.

Riding a Donkey - the "easy" way down?

Bright Angel Campground We reach Bright Angel Camp at 11:30 am. INCONCEIVABLE!!! This is the time we normally begin hiking! The campground not only had toilets, but flush toilets. The dish washing sink, picnic table, food boxes and cooking rock completed the four-star compground. We'd never seen such deluxe accomodations while backpacking.
Bright Angel Campground

Picnic Tables at the campsites
Picnic tables at the campsites
A place to hang your packs
Metal rods to keep your packs safe from animals
A concrete slab to place our camp stove
Concrete slab to place the camp stove
(and avoid crotch burns)

On our way down, we passed some people riding the donkeys back up from the lodge. One lady gave us what she thought would be encouraging words, "The showers are wonderful!" Little did she know that as mere campers, we would not be allowed to use the showers. However, we felt consoled because even though the Phantom Ranch showers were off-limits, their Cantina wasn't. We spent the afternoon drinking beer and wine and playing cards in an air conditioned room. INCONCEIVABLE!!!

Phantom Lodge Cantina
Drinking, playing cards and socializing in the cantina
Boat Beach
Relaxing at Boat Beach once the day cooled off
Copyrighted by McDoten Wachowski Enterprises @2008