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Schellbach Butte - 2 members in 5 triplogs have rated this an average 5 ( 1 to 5 best )
5 triplogs
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Apr 22 2022
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 Guides 30
 Routes 435
 Photos 9,897
 Triplogs 936

40 male
 Joined Jan 21 2013
 AZ
Schellbach ButteNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Apr 22 2022
FOTGTriplogs 936
Backpack34.00 Miles 12,800 AEG
Backpack34.00 Miles
12,800 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Partners partners
BiFrost
RedwallNHops
A group of six of us backpacked into Upper Phantom Canyon to knock out a couple of summits, Buddha and Schellbach Butte. I had already climbed Buddha, so I opted for Schellbach Butte and a long overdue exploration of Haunted Canyon. Karl joined me and everyone else headed for Buddha.

Our hike into Upper Phantom Friday was windy at times, but the dramatic clouds made for some nice scenery and it never got too cold. We had to retreat to our tents and tarps for a brief period at camp due to a quick moving storm, but that was the worst of the weather we would face for the first day and trip.

We left camp just after 5:15 a.m. in the morning on the second day. We all traveled together to the top of the redwall break and the Schellbach saddle. From there, four went to Buddha, two went to Schellbach. There is a small cliff band to negotiate on Schellbach's north end, but nothing there is harder than what you encounter on the approach. Navigating to the summit was straightforward and easy, which made me appreciative that I was not making the traverse over to Buddha, which towered over us. Schellbach does not pack much in prominence, but the views it offers are stunning. We enjoyed the views for several minutes and refueled for the tedious descent back to Phantom.

Once we got back to Phantom, we headed upstream to Haunted Canyon. There is a well cairn-ed route going upstream that is worth taking a minute to find, as travel in the stream bed was a little slow going. We hiked up to the robust source of the creek and then explored some ruins that I had remembered seeing pictures of years ago. The source of Haunted Creek was pretty cool, as was the nice grove of cottonwoods that congregated around it. The ruins were intriguing, but hard to get to and inaccessible beyond the base of its wall, as they sat perched at the opening of a cave, high on a ledge with the opening of the cave walled in by a short wall. An intriguing site for sure. We returned the way we came. Our trip up Schellbach and Haunted Canyon ended up making for a long day and we got back at 5:30 p.m., to begin our patient wait for the Buddha crowd.

I got an early start on the final day and topped out on South Kaibab at nearly 11:00 a.m. on the dot. Perfect temps and conditions for the hike out and I felt stronger than usual, having not participated in any suffer fest the day prior.

Its always a treat up there. Tough to beat a three-day weekend of summits and drawing new lines on the map in the Grand Canyon backcountry.
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  2 archives
Apr 22 2022
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 Guides 4
 Routes 414
 Photos 9,418
 Triplogs 1,105

53 male
 Joined Nov 20 2012
 Phoenix, AZ
Schellbach ButteNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Apr 22 2022
BiFrostTriplogs 1,105
Backpack34.00 Miles 12,900 AEG
Backpack34.00 Miles3 Days         
12,900 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Partners partners
FOTG
RedwallNHops
Another summit trip into Grand Canyon. Joel had the permit and offered me a spot which I happily accepted. We met in Flagstaff the night before to coordinate and a few brews. Next morning it was off to South Kaibab Trail around 8am start time.

Down South Kaibab to the start of Utah Flats Route and our access to Phantom Creek. Dropping into Phantom Creek we setup camp. Two of our group arrived about an hour later to round out the 6 in our group. Good night around camp and discussed the next days game plan. Decided 515am start time was best as we had one group of 4 doing Buddha Temple and myself and Lee doing Schellbach Butte.

Next morning, we were off first hopping a ridge between Phantom Creek and Sturdevant Canyon which would be the approach for both summits. The canyon was fun especially as it cuts up and through the Red wall section. Eventually it tops out in the Supai and a saddle between Buddha and Schellbach. At this point the Buddha group foursome of Joel, Shelly, Pernell and Mel headed off for their big day. Lee and I headed for Schellbach Butte.

Nothing too difficult out to Schellbach other than one Supai block to navigate. As for summits Schellbach is not much in prominence but makes up for in views. It was also Lee’s 50th GC summit!! Wedged between the towering Buddha and Isis just across the way to the west it has a good 360 to enjoy. We spent about 40 minutes on the summit before heading back to the saddle.

We exited the same way as the approach and back over the ridge to Phantom Creek. Then up Phantom to Haunted Canyon confluence. In Haunted Canyon we found a use trail with cairned route that was somewhat easy to follow. It runs above the creek and stays out of the brush which made travel much faster. We made it to the spring source of Haunted Canyon and robust one for sure.

There was some ruins Lee wanted to check as well just above the spring area. They were difficult to access but we made it to the base. Great view of the spring area below and whole length of Haunted Canyon. We headed back down and exited on the same use trail back to Phantom Creek.

Back at camp by 530 we waited for the others to return. Unfortunately for them it was not until 9pm but they did successfully summit Buddha. Of course, very tired everyone was happy to be back at camp and eat/rest.

Next morning after yesterday’s long day it was not an early start. Eventually packed up and headed back out Utah Flats Route with quick stop at cantina to fuel up for the hike out. Great trip in the canyon and everyone got a summit!!
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  2 archives
Dec 21 2013
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 Guides 1
 Routes 269
 Photos 613
 Triplogs 1,360

47 male
 Joined Dec 22 2003
 Tucson, AZ
Utah Flats/Upper Phantom Creek, AZ 
Utah Flats/Upper Phantom Creek, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Dec 21 2013
RedwallNHopsTriplogs 1,360
Backpack37.62 Miles 14,198 AEG
Backpack37.62 Miles5 Days         
14,198 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Day1: down South Kaibab. Took the Miner's Route to bright angel. The route was fun, but interesting with a heavy pack. Stayed at Bright Angel Campground. Hippy and John9L met us there for a night of laffs and mule petting.

Day2: unfortunately, Hippy's ankle was bothering her from the injury the day before, so 4 of us took off on the very steep Utah Flats route out of camp. We dropped pack about 3 miles in and dayhiked up Cheops Plateau. Very fun scramble up to the top. We then hiked the rest of the way down Utah Flats and made camp at the slickrock area above the waterfall. In camp, we discussed the plans for the day. We decided on something dry and something we could complete, so we decided on Shellbach butte. Luckily we obtained a copy of grand canyon summits before the trip so we had a little bit of beta on it.

Day3: Hiked the steep slope out of camp to the ridge above. Contoured around to the base of the wash east of Schellbach butte. From there we followed the wash up and up. Most of it was easy boulder hopping. We had to bypass a couple pouroffs, but mostly moderate going. Once we got to the redwall there was a 40 foot pouroff to scramble up, but not too bad. At the top of the redwall, we stayed in the gully and immediately entered a narrower Supai gulley. There were two major obstacles in this gully. The first was a 10 ft wall that was assisted by a fixed line. After that we came to the final cliff. After poking around a bit, John climbed an exposed line. I climbed directly up the middle of the gully. I think what I did matched the book's description of a 4th class mantle move. After that we contoured around to Schellbach/Budda saddle. From there we stayed to the right and worked our way thru some supai cliffs to reach the summit ridge. From there it's a pretty easy walk to the top of the butte.
We were a bit worried about getting down thru the Supai, but we all had no problems with the 4th class mantle on the way down.

Day 4: Sleep in!. I think we slept in till 7. It was good, since our bags were covered with frost(no tent or bivvy). We had time for a leasurely breakfast and had time to dry everything. We checked out upper Phantom falls then back on the Utah flats route back to Bright Angel. We enjoyed a beer and wine at the canteen later that night.

Day 5: Out via Bright Angel.

Great trip to a really cool new area to us!
_____________________
 
Dec 21 2013
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 Guides 3
 Routes 521
 Photos 11,967
 Triplogs 1,583

47 female
 Joined Sep 18 2009
 Tucson, AZ
Utah Flats RouteNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Dec 21 2013
GrottoGirlTriplogs 1,583
Backpack37.62 Miles 14,198 AEG
Backpack37.62 Miles5 Days         
14,198 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Partners partners
John_seJerman
RedwallNHops
Our Grand Obsession continues with our fourth backpack in the Canyon for 2013. Four of us did a 5-day backpack over Christmas starting on December 21. We started down the South Kaibab trail. I've only been on a corridor trail for a little bit my first trip to the canyon several years ago so I wasn't prepared for the wide well graded trail!

I couldn't manage such a fine, maintained trail so at the Tonto we veered off to take the Miner's Route down to the River. Since I had the tracklog off HAZ, we found the start of it really easily. I did find descending down some of the chutes difficult while carrying my 47 lb backpack (really should have pitted the dates and left the electronics at home). However, persistence prevails and I made it! I really like off trail stuff in the GC.

We got to Phantom with plenty of time to write post cards and enjoy a drink in the canteen. Then we hungout in camp and waited for Hippy and John9L. Finally they arrived, however, Hippy had taken a spill and was nursing a sprained ankle. We had fun hanging in camp even though we didn't get to hike with them.

In the morning, the four of us headed up the Utah Flats Route. Out of camp the route digs into the earth and goes straight up. I figured with the erosion it might be kind of scary on the way down. Piano Alley is cool with all the big blocks of Tapeats about the size of Pianos.

We stopped for a break on the slick rocks. To be actually on top of the Tepeats and not on Bright Angel is pretty special!

We headed over to a good spot to drop packs and then headed up Cheops Plateau. We headed to the saddle using the same take off point that Joe had posted. We took a quick break on the saddle and then started the climb. I was thankful for all the rock climbing and caving we've done over the last year and found that I was able to do it all without a problem. If exposure is not your thing this probably wouldn't be a good place for you to test it. We signed in on the summit log and then headed for the view of the River and the Pyramid for lunch.

The way down I had Joel talk me down the first couple of spots and then after that I was in the rhythm and able to navigate the scary down climbs on my own. We celebrated our success in a slick rock camp in Phantom Creek!

That night we discussed our options for the next day. We all decided that we could not possibly do Isis under our time frame so Joel picked a Butte we could do in a day, Schellbach Butte. Thankfully, I had a scanned copy of Grand Canyon Summits on my Nooks (so I guess I shouldn't have left the electronics at home!) so we had some beta as well as our maps.

In the morning we got a later start the planned. We climbed up the slope by our camp to a saddle below Schellbach close to the drainage which has been called Sturdevent wash. We traversed over to the wash and started our ascent up the canyon. There was a lot of boulder hopping along the way. We worked our way around a large pour off using a bypass on the right side. Then we scrambled up a few pour offs. We reached the Redwall and got out our GPSs to find North. Neither of the two GPSs would calibrate the compasses - there is something to be said about carry some old school magic but I had left mine in my cave sketching pile at home, so we guessed based on the sun and it seems we were right! We scrambled up the wreckage that was once a Redwall cliff to the Supai Group which continued to be a fractured mess. At one point we found an old rope hand line that had been used to scramble up a particularly stiff section. After that we had only one last challenging section to get through the Supai - a class four climb according to our beta. Joel picked one spot which he used his arms extensively to get up. Based on descriptions that may have been the appropriate route. That's not an option for me so we searched for an alternative which may have ended up being class 5, but anyway it worked. We did use webbing to haul daypacks. I was last on the climb and I remember thinking that I should turn around however I was the only one not up so I gritted my teeth and climbed. My impression was that the climb was stiffer than what we did the day before.

We traversed over to the saddle at the end of Schellbach. It was obvious someone had camped there. We then proceeded with the last short bit of scrambling and the nice walk over to the Butte. The views were incredible! I especially liked seeing Cheops Plateau that we had climbed the day before. On the top, we found a HEAVY granite sign saying "Schellbach Butte" which had transparently been carried up to the Butte by the grandkids of Schellbach, a Grand Canyon Naturalist.

On the way down we all followed Joel's route. I had a long pause midway trying to get in the right position so I didn't feel like I'd just shoot off the cliff! After that the rest of the trip seemed pretty doable if not fun!

On the way back I saw two cairns beaconing me. They were early than the spot I had planned to use for exiting the wash but we decided to check them out. In hind site it would have been better to have followed our tracks out. Nonetheless we made it to the saddle. From there we decided to try another way out down what seemed to be a less steep slope. However, we had to work our way around a couple pour offs.

Back in camp we again celebrated our success! We also were excited about a late start the next day!

We awoke in the morning to 25 degree temps. It was a little cooler than one of the other nights. I looked over and saw Joel completely cinched into his sleeping bag. The layers of frost on top were intimidating. It did remind me of why most people use tents or bivvies! Once it was light enough I started moving about.

We hit trail late and immediately dropped packs to see the waterfall. Looks like an interesting rappel! Then we headed up the steep climb up to the Tonto plateau and the Utah. We retraced our step and soon I found myself going down the steep, eroded path into camp. I was happy to be treated to Phantom Ranch and the luxuries that help ease you back into civilization!
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Dec 31 2000
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 Routes 370
 Photos 104
 Triplogs 508

male
 Joined Jan 01 2023
 Arizona
Schellbach ButteNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hike & Climb avatar Dec 31 2000
pseudalpineTriplogs 508
Hike & Climb3.50 Miles
Hike & Climb3.50 Miles
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
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