Returned to the scene of the crime with Bob. Had a good chat with an elderly Navajo man at the trailhead. Started off down the wrong canyon. Doh! It all worked out and merged near the rock totem pole. Setup camp in the chub taggers headquarters at 3pm. Bats galore nose diving through the trees in mid day seemed odd.
Even though the canyon is in shade by 3pm we noticed it was rather warm and extremely humid. Onwards to tackle the Emerald Pools in Big Canyon. This time with no pounding rain we busted through the foliage and boulder obstacle course. With 20 mins to our turnaround time Bob took the low road and I skirted up the canyon wall in rubbish scree. From above I could make out two huge travertine veils with a low flow. Bob made it over quickly so I darted down after a couple shots.
Back in camp Bob grilled up the steak he brought to share!
Being so hot we decided to float around in the river. Unfortunately it wasn't the fluorescent aqua blue, rather a chocolate blueberry hue. What it lacked in color was made up by the cool temperature and therapeutic mud islands.
We each lugged in 300oz water. With the heat and outrageous humidity it quickly became apparent day two was out of the question as we were both clinging onto a couple quarts each. I tasted four spring sources but all were extremely salty. The river seemed much lighter as it was mixed with fresh water flow. However I still can barely stand it.
As both our packs were heavy neither of us brought sandals. Turned out walking around in the Grand Canyon barefoot wasn't too bad! Had a tough time going to sleep in the 85 degree sauna. Lightly sweating in only shorts at 11pm wasn't a picnic. By 2-4am the temps finally dropped into the seventies with nice breezes.
We headed out at sunlight. I took us on a 300-400 foot off trail scree ascent to ensure we started completely dehydrated. Back on trail we climbed to cooler temps. At the rim it was once again 75, breezy and refreshing!
About 3:30pm on I-17 passing Schnebly Hill road a thunder cell dumped over a half inch of hail onto the freeway. Several pulled over but most slowed down to a crawl as the hail exploded on the windshield from fierce wind. To the side I could immediately see water flowing and creeks running after this 5-10min downpour.
Great little adventure with fabulous company!
Emerald Pool - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qfpSAJRxDNc