Advice on hiking to phantom in Feb or Aug?

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Linked Guide  • Bright Angel Trail, AZ
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Gogogo
Posts: 14
Joined: Nov 20 2018 12:48 am
City, State: IOM

Advice on hiking to phantom in Feb or Aug?

Post by Gogogo » Nov 20 2018 1:02 am

Hi there. I’m looking to really increase my understanding of the conditions likely to be experienced in the canyon hiking down the south kaibab and back up the bright angel in either February or August. I hiked this route in December 2007 and also have done a one day hike part down south kaibab, across the tonto platform and up bright angel in September 2006. This is my only experience below the rim and my concern now is that I have two children, the youngest of whom will only turn 8 in early 2019. Where can I find really good sources of info so I can make a sensible decision on whether to make the hike? Thank you

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mazatzal
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Joined: Jul 28 2004 2:18 pm
City, State: Scottsdale, AZ

Re: Advice on hiking to phantom in Feb or Aug?

Post by mazatzal » Nov 21 2018 6:04 pm

@Gogogo
Grew up in South Cumbria and sailed to IOM often (Ramsey, Port St Mary, Port Erin...)
Laxey to the summit x2 would be ok training except it is not at altitude.

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nonot
Posts: 1921
Joined: Nov 18 2005 11:52 pm
City, State: Phoenix, AZ

Re: Advice on hiking to phantom in Feb or Aug?

Post by nonot » Nov 21 2018 10:31 pm

In March the air will be a little more humid due to the melting snow. However many who visit AZ will get nosebleeds from the dry air. For training hikes, focus on hiking the elevation with the same weight you plan to carry. If you are going to have a 40 lb backpack, then find a hill and hike it with that backpack all in one day, even if it means you have to climb a 500 ft hill 8 times in a row. Go slow and don't overexert yourself. Remember that even if you can only do 1 mph it's only going to take you about 8 hrs to climb out. If you overexert yourself and collapse you will never make it out.

The walk from the backcountry office parking lot to the top of Bright Angel trailhead is about 10 minutes and is flat. No need to worry about the bus as it doesn't help you.
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Gogogo
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Joined: Nov 20 2018 12:48 am
City, State: IOM

Re: Advice on hiking to phantom in Feb or Aug?

Post by Gogogo » Nov 22 2018 12:50 am

@mazatzal Ooh you know the Isle of Man! Yes from Laxey to the Snaefell summit would be a good long uphill slog with exposure to uneven terrain. I used South Barrule and the Port St Mary to Port Erin coastal path to train for my first hike to Phantom and I don’t recall any issues struggling with the Grand Canyon terrain. I do remember a later trip carrying my two year old up from Cedar Ridge in June and that was hard, due to the heat plus heavy load, and no doubt a lack of training!

The nose bleeds gets my attention. I don’t think we’ve struggled with nose bleeds when skiing at 7500ft+, but sliding downhill in cold weather isn’t as arduous as climbing in hot weather. I imagine nose bleeds could easily frighten a child.

Given all the advice I’ve had, I really am unsure whether Phantom is a hike for any child who doesn’t live in Arizona. But equally, I’m sure many have successfully completed the hike and have the resulting sense of achievement.

Thank you again for all your advice. It’s very much appreciated.

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