|Hiking||3.00 Miles|| || |
|2,000 ft AEG|| || || |
My boss asked me to join him in a day-hike SK-River-BA trail loop on Saturday. I declined because I was not ready for a death march in the 90+ heat. I love the Canyon but jetting through at that pace is not my thing... 'hiking for photography' i think was a topic in a past Forum thread.
He then texted me with the fun of their trip, late Saturday. My calendar was clear on Sunday and Monday so I entertained the idea of a run up there for some photos, since the forecast was for T-Storms all week.
"Hey Hon', I'm thinking... (her eyes begin to roll) that WE could go up to the Canyon for some shooting." I volunteer
"Sure, but..." she queries.
"I may hike a bit"
"Oh, one of your 'day hikes'..." she answers
"Well, kind of, but the sun will be down..."
I left the Valley at 2 and arrived at Yavapai Point just as the sun dipped below the western horizon.. the crowds were shoulder to shoulder at every overlook and along the rim trail. Within minutes after sunset I found myself ALONE... only two or three cars in the lot. Too bad for them because just then a Thunderstorm rolled in, popping bolts all the way across the Canyon. That fun passed, and I then parked my car at the 'picnic' lot just east of Yaki Pt rd turnoff. I walked to the SK-TH and down to Cedar Point loaded with ~70 lbs of photo gear (2 bodies, 6 lenses, 2 tripods one with pan-tilt motor drive, batteries, etc). I set up the pan-tilt for stars through the Cedars and it ran for two hours while I rolled out the air pad on the ground. About 130am I started to see flashes and hear thunder... the clouds quickly spilled over the rim and the fireworks began. One cell was threatening so I wrapped the gear up and sheltered under the eve of the outhouse (luckily the wind kept things fresh) as it poured for about ten minutes. I then headed up toward OOh Aah point and set up the tripods in time for moonrise and later sunrise. Climbed back out by 8am and grabbed a bite at the market bistro and then napped in the car. Jake Case (HippiePunkiePirate) met me at the BA-TH and we planned on going over to the Hopi point area for sunset shooting but more clouds moved in with strong winds and rain. I packed it up and headed back to the valley, got a few aspen shots near Hart and then the storms hit again - heavy rain and lightning solids thru Flagstaff to past the Schnebly Hill exit.