Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Start: Tucson, AZ
Finish: South Rim, Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
Today was the beginning of a trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, then continuing the road trip to Death Valley with my husband. I joined a group of 21 people to hike and stay at Phantom Ranch for 3 nights. The group has been doing this trip in January for the last 20 plus years. I was fortunate enough to be invited to join the group this year, the first year I could make it in January since retiring from teaching last May.
The adventure begins!
That's me on the left.
We made a quick stop in Phoenix for supplies, then continued north on I-17. Lots of AZ Highway Patrol between Tucson and Phoenix on I-10. (This was also noted by my husband on his drive up several days later.) Lunch was in Black Canyon City at Rock Springs Cafe. This is a landmark along the route north of Phoenix. It is well known as a restaurant and bar, especially known for pie- many kinds available daily. The building is historic and furnished with antiques.
Rock Springs Cafe
Next stop was for gas in Flagstaff then on to the Grand Canyon. The snow cover on the San Francisco was scant, the least I have ever seen at this time of year. I believe I have seen more snow on them in June and July.
San Francisco Peaks
We arrived by 4 PM, met up with most of the crowd before checking into rooms at the Maswik Lodge. The group met for dinner at the Bright Angel Lodge. It was a time for old friends to get caught up and for us 'newbies' to meet the group we would be with for the next several days. Based on this first meeting it appeared to be a very congenial group, easy to mix in with.