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mini location map2021-04-18
21 by photographer avatarAZOutdoorsman
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Nankoweap TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 18 2021
AZOutdoorsman
Hiking27.61 Miles 8,432 AEG
Hiking27.61 Miles   15 Hrs   13 Mns   2.21 mph
8,432 ft AEG   2 Hrs   42 Mns Break15 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Partners none no partners
The big day-hike had arrived!

Saturday: After driving up from the valley, we spent the night at the Triple Alcoves TH and went out to its rim. Easy/smooth trail to the rim, where you can easily move up and down the rim for various views. Definitely worth hitting while in the area and the camping is better than the Nako TH and less that 10 minutes away.

Sunday: Started the hike at 5:43 (just before sunrise). Truck read 31 degrees at TH with little to no breeze. Started with 1.5L in the bladder and 2 liter bottles to cache. We moved quickly up to the saddle (caching a liter each there), and then the long traverse over to the top of the shoulder that heads down to Nanko creek (caching another litter each here at the top).

With the light day hiking weight, the downhill went smoothly. After entering the creek section we stopped to filter water for the trip to the river/granary and back to same spot. Down the creek making quick decisions as to the "best" route of the many presented.

Arrived at the river at 11:29 (just under 6 hours from the start and within 10 minutes of projected time). Hung out shoeless at the beautiful "emerald beach" and had lunch - temps low 70s. Then headed up to the granary! What an awesome experience and the lighting/clouds down canyon were pretty good for the middle of the day. Spent some time here taking photos and then headed down and back up the creek to our same filter spot. Another 1.5L for the bladder plus the 2 2L caches for the hike out.

At this point we were slightly behind my projected times (which I thought were on the padded side). Then within the first mile of the steep up I knew I was not right - I just didn't have the energy that I normally do. It was slow going with a fair amount of stopping/resting (increasing the rest time well above projections).

Once on the traverse, I was picking up a little speed, but still not right and resting. Looks like it will be after dark when we get out - which I was hoping we would get out before dark (based on time only - no issue with hiking in the dark). Made it back to the TH at 9:06 (my projection was 7:30).

Back at camp, no hot meal or celebratory beer - instead a sponge-bath, bowl of cereal and hit the bag.

Mon: Drive back to Chandler. In bed by 7:30 and up on Tuesday at 7:00 - yes, 11.5 hrs of sleep! Felt great at work on Tuesday, back to normal.

My buddy that went with me is an Ultra Trail-Runner, so he had no issues and could have gone 2-3x faster if he weren't hanging with me. While I was a little disappointed with my speed/time, it was a GREAT hike and I had an amazing time! Next month is North Bass and hopefully a less than 15hr day - but I promise you I will have an incredible day in THE Canyon either way!
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