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Grandview to Hance Creek - 13 members in 26 triplogs have rated this an average 4.2 ( 1 to 5 best )
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Oct 29 2020
DixieFlyer
avatar

 Guides 40
 Routes 401
 Photos 5,236
 Triplogs 363

male
 Joined Jan 07 2017
 Fountain Hills,
Grand Canyon - Horseshoe Mesa Loop, AZ 
Grand Canyon - Horseshoe Mesa Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Oct 29 2020
DixieFlyer
Hiking13.20 Miles 4,067 AEG
Hiking13.20 Miles   7 Hrs   52 Mns   2.14 mph
4,067 ft AEG   1 Hour   42 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners none no partners
I had not been to the Grand Canyon since last winter, and I decided to do a hike that I had done before -- a loop hike around Horseshoe Mesa.

We started from the Grandview TH and descended down to Horseshoe Mesa. The descent was slower for me than it would have been on any of the corridor trails. I do like the Grandview Trail better than the corridor trails, even though I no doubt won't get as many social media "likes" for being outside the corridor.

Once on Horseshoe Mesa we took a break next to the old miner's stone dining hall. We then continued on the Grandview Trail to the west side of Horseshoe Mesa, and followed the trail down to the Tonto Trail. Along the way I missed a turn down toward the Tonto, and I went 1/4 mile, if not more, before finding my mistake. So that probably added 1/2 mile or so to the hike. It was a bit of slippery descent down to the Tonto, so we took our time.

It was a nice hike on the Tonto down below the north and east sides of Horseshoe Mesa. We saw 3 bighorn sheep along the Tonto, on the NE side of Horseshoe Mesa. We went back up to Horseshoe Mesa on the trail that goes past Page Spring. This was a fun climb, and I was glad to be going up instead of down. Once back on Horseshoe Mesa we stopped for a lunch break before making the steep climb back to the TH on the Grandview Trail.

This was a good hike and is one that I hope to do again!
Fauna
Fauna
Bighorn Sheep
Named place
Named place
Horseshoe Mesa Last Chance Mine
_____________________
I'd rather die of exhaustion than die of starvation.
Feb 27 2020
derpsquad
avatar

 Routes 2
 Photos 64
 Triplogs 10

30 male
 Joined Sep 09 2015
 Tucson, AZ
Tanner to Grandview GC, AZ 
Tanner to Grandview GC, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Feb 27 2020
derpsquad
Backpack30.00 Miles 9,400 AEG
Backpack30.00 Miles5 Days         
9,400 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Day 1: Tanner to Cardenas Creek
Ice down Tanner for the first mile. Good thing we all had microspikes. Super steep trail with beautiful views all the way down to the river. Pretty good campsites at Tanner beach and a vault toilet. We filled water and pushed on to the beach at Cardenas creek for the night. Could definitely see running into a large river trip here but there is a lot of room.

Day 2: Cardenas Creek
Chilled at the beach all day. I have to give a shout out to Water Wizard flocculant. Just a few drops from an eye dropper bottle flocculates all the silt in under 5 minutes. Much easier than alum. Saw two small rafting trips float by. Two guys hopped out and gave us beer which was awesome.

Day 3: Escalante Route, Cardenas to Hance Rapids
What an adventure this trail is. Every corner provides a different perspective of the Colorado. Highlight of the trip for sure. Seventy-five mile canyon was pretty special. The Papago Wall and Slide aren't that bad at all.

Day 4: Tonto Trail, Hance Rapids to Hance Creek
Pretty decent elevation gain but nothing too crazy. Good views from the Tonto plateau. Hance creek is a special place to camp with clear, running water. I could see it being popular when in season. Up to now, we only saw a solo hiker and a group of three.

Day 5: Hance Creek to Grandview
This is quite the climb but you are rewarded with excellent views of the canyon the whole way up. About a mile from the TH we started to run into a few people.

Overall, I was surprised by the solitude - is it always like this in the winter? Can't wait to explore more of the GC - anyone have some more routes they could recommend?
_____________________
Oct 13 2017
mcdanbrett
avatar

 Routes 2
 Triplogs 1

54 male
 Joined Apr 01 2016
 Phoenix, Arizona
Grandview to Hance CreekNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Oct 13 2017
mcdanbrett
Backpack5.19 Miles 268 AEG
Backpack5.19 Miles   4 Hrs   50 Mns   1.31 mph
268 ft AEG      53 Mns Break
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
The Grandview Trail a well maintained trail and starts off steep, eases after an initial saddle (below the Coconino Sandstone) to Horseshoe Mesa and then gets steep again after splitting off to the east to join the Tonto Trail, down through the Redwall. The Redwall portion is very exposed, scenic, and exciting. Page Spring, at the base of the Redwall, was dripping into a small pool that provided plenty clear water to fill up. The Tonto portion was not steep, but had a fair amount of ups and downs, which were still painful considering the elevation change already achieved. Hance Creek was a pleasant sight and had a narrow flowing stream at the camping area.

When considering an overnight trip to the Grand Canyon, several things come to mind: it will be spectacular, it will be grueling, and it will be memorable no matter what trail is hiked. On this trip I traveled with my 16-year-old son, who had done one easy multi-day backpack trip to the Superstition Mtns. There was slight concern that the difficult hiking might be a bit too much for the young man. But, he plays soccer, is in great shape, and is stronger than I am, so the slight concern shifted toward my performance. This is always in the back of my mind anytime I plan to backpack the Grand Canyon. Every prior trip had included near immobility after days 1 and 2 entering the canyon. This trip was no different.

This portion of the trip was part of a loop hike starting at the Grandview trailhead, spending a night at Hance Creek, two nights at the river at Hance Rapids and the last day ascending the Red Canyon (New Hance) trail. One nice thing about this route was the degree of steepness was focused at the very beginning and end. Day 2 (a sort of recovery day) was longer than Day 1, but did not include the elevation change as painfully experienced by my aching thighs on Day 1. With two nights at the river, my pain had time to subside for the demanding last day of climbing. Looking back on our ascent of Red Canyon, my son and I were thankful not to have descended Red Canyon trail due to it’s steepness. When we topped out, the nearly flat portion of trail leading to the road made us giddy with happiness. Again, the Grand Canyon did not disappoint.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hance Creek Light flow Light flow
Running in a narrow stream at the camp area.

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Page Spring Dripping Dripping
Dripping, not enough to fill container. But, plenty of water in small pool at source to fill up.
_____________________
3 archives
Apr 09 2016
Tortoise_Hiker
avatar

 Routes 78
 Photos 7,357
 Triplogs 2,767

59 male
 Joined Apr 02 2005
 Mesa, AZ
Tonto Trail: New Hance Trail to Grandview TrNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 09 2016
Tortoise_Hiker
Hiking22.30 Miles 6,333 AEG
Hiking22.30 Miles   12 Hrs   30 Mns   1.78 mph
6,333 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Partners partners
Dave1
PrestonSands
The_Eagle
Another Great trip in the Grand Canyon. Our group shrank to 4(Preston,Dave,Bruce and I) on the last week :( so I shot Hippy a PM to see if she wanted to hike and or shuttle us. It was last minute but she came through(THANKS) with a shuttle/hiker. We meet Frank a little before 8AM at Grandview and headed to New Hance to start by 8AM. Our prayers were answered and we had great weather all day. Hiking down Red Canyon is real treat. We took our time and we hit Hance Rapids around noon and took our lunch there. Awesome lunch spot. From there it was on to check off another section of the Tonto Trail. Awesome views with lots of blooms made it a real treat. We took a break in Hance Creek and Preston(THANKS) filtered until we all were set for the rest of the hike. We were doing good but beating darkness would be close. It's hard to go fast in such an awesome place. I hit a wall with 2+ miles to go and threw up. Preston and Bruce kept me motivated while Dave skipped the rest of the way up and hitchhiked to get the car. They can't resist him. Frank was exploring a little more and Dave already had the car so we didn't need the shuttle. we only had to use are headlamps for an hour or so. Topped out about 8:30PM. From there we followed Frank over to Maswik for a quick bite and share hiking stories. Nice to meet and hike with Frank. From there it was just a short 4 and a half hour drive home.What a great trip! Thanks for the hike Gentlemen, like HAZ, You all rock!
_____________________
Tortoise Hiking. Stop and smell the Petrichor.
Apr 09 2016
The_Eagle
avatar

 Guides 7
 Routes 798
 Photos 9,771
 Triplogs 1,346

64 male
 Joined Jan 20 2009
 Far NE Phoenix,
Tonto-New Hance-Grandview, AZ 
Tonto-New Hance-Grandview, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 09 2016
The_Eagle
Hiking22.33 Miles 6,333 AEG
Hiking22.33 Miles   12 Hrs   45 Mns   2.05 mph
6,333 ft AEG   1 Hour   50 Mns Break
 
1st trip
My hats off to Denny for putting this together. When you try to assemble a larger group, it's like herding turtles. (A job he's highly qualified to do)
He was busy arranging a shuttle up until 10 minutes before he went to bed.

Denny's on a mission to complete the entire Tonto Trail. With this section, I've completed the Tanner to Hermit portion with him.

We started on the New Hance Trail at 8am on a chilly morning. It didn't take long to warm up though. New Hance is one steep uneven mutha. My knees were barking up a storm. I would have lost the bet if someone would have told me that you actually gain 400' of AEG while going down this one. Staying upright and taking in the views while hiking, becomes tough on this one.
This section was slower going than we expected. It was 7 miles to the river.
:next: https://youtu.be/o8 ... 8bIU

We ate lunch at the New Hance Rapids in front of a clear flowing Colorado River.
:next: https://youtube.com ... 2eDI

Next we were on the Tonto Trail, We'd be on this for 10 miles. It got a little warm on a short portion by the river, but then the clouds and breeze came back and it was perfect. I really enjoyed this section of the Tonto.
We all topped off our water at New Hance Creek for the slog out.

Now on Grandview Trail, the fun begins. It was slow going for me. I was gassed. I had about an hour with the headlamp on to finish.

Denny, thanks for setting this up, driving and arranging for perfect weather.
Good hiking with Dave and Preston again.
Great meeting Hippy's Friend Frank.
We had some interesting conversations.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hance Creek Light flow Light flow
Plenty to filter from in this perennial source

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Hance Rapids Medium flow Medium flow
Cold, clear and great for filtering

water 1 out of 5water less than maxwater less than maxwater less than max Red Canyon Pools to trickle Pools to trickle
Isolated pools from previous days rain
_____________________
There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness."
Dave Barry
Mar 20 2016
ultrazona
avatar

 Routes 7
 Photos 955
 Triplogs 181

33 male
 Joined Mar 07 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Grandview to Hance CreekNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 20 2016
ultrazona
Hiking13.00 Miles 3,702 AEG
Hiking13.00 Miles
3,702 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
_____________________
ultrazona.com
Nov 01 2015
sirena
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 4
 Photos 3,873
 Triplogs 362

46 female
 Joined Feb 12 2008
 Tucson, AZ
Tanner to Grandview, AZ 
Tanner to Grandview, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Nov 01 2015
sirena
Backpack35.00 Miles 4,600 AEG
Backpack35.00 Miles6 Days         
4,600 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
November 1-6th

I had three events to work for the Arizona Trail Asociation- two in Tusayan and one in Page. Six days in between and I was determined to spend every second of it in the Grand Canyon. Late Sunday morning, we had a beautiful ceremony for the placement of a memorial bench dedicated to the Father of the Arizona Trail, Dale Shewalter and then I was off to finish writing up the event and last-minute packing. I parked at Grandview and looked for a ride. I didn't have to look long, parked right next to me was a fellow Grand Canyon enthusiast who had just finished a trip.

Day 1

I didn't get hiking until 3:30 pm on the Tanner Trail, but I wasn't planning on going very far. A mile and a half away is 75-mile saddle with good camping spots. The trail was steep, dropping 1700 feet and rocky through the Kaibab, Toroweap and Coconino. My pack was heavy with six days of food and 5 liters of water- enough to dry camp and have plenty for the descent to the river the next day.

It was a warm and windless night, even up at 5600 ft. and I found the perfect spot overlooking 75-Mile Canyon. I could see O'Neill Butte and Horseshoe Mesa and Desert View Watchtower loomed above. Camped under the stars, happy to be back in my beloved Grand Canyon again.

Day 2

The next morning, I had a bit of level trail in the Supai to start my day, contouring under Cardenas and Escalante Buttes. At the Redwall break, there is a short spur trail that goes up to one of the most fantastic views of the Palisades of the Desert, Comanche Point and the Grand Canyon Supergroup area upstream of Tanner. I spent almost two hours looking at the different landmarks and taking pictures.

It was so hard to leave, but the day was heating up and the river was still a long way away. I made quick work of the Redwall and the Muav, happy to have my umbrella for shade. The Dox Sandstone is soft and the trail is mushed into the side of the hill, making the left leg higher than the right. I reached Tanner Beach at 2pm and got in the chilly water to cool off.

The river was running brown from the last round of storms in an unbelievably wet year. It didn't look too silty (whitecaps instead of browncap waves), so I tried it through my Platypus gravity filter. That thing rocks. Filtered with no problems and is a cinch to backflush. Plus I can set up and eat, watch boats go through the rapids and my water is done.

I was getting ready to leave a couple of hours later to start the Escalante Route and hike to Cardenas Beach for the night when a man appeared and said he'd be hiking to the Hermit Trail for the next 11 days. I ran into him a couple of times, and was the only person I saw for the first five days. I had a couple miles to Cardenas, small ups and downs through various ravines. Hit the beach just as I was losing daylight. This is also part of the Hayduke Trail, an 800-mile circuitous route that goes from Arches to Zion.

For the last four summers I have worked as a river guide in the Grand Canyon with Arizona River Runners and Grand Canyon Whitewater. I've run the river over 20 times and hiked pieces of the route I'd be traversing, but it was totally different experience to be here solo. Cardenas is always one of my favorite camps, how blissful to have it all to myself on a warm autumn night (and to not have to get up at 4:30 am to make coffee for 30 people). I did some long-exposure photography and set my bed up on the beach.

The winds kicked up in the middle of the night and I was glad I'd borrowed a tent from a friend. Sleeping under the stars, as much as I love it, was not going to work for most of the trip because of the incoming storm.

Day 3

The next morning the skies were blue above, but as I made the climb to the Hilltop Ruin, I could see dark clouds downstream. Decided to skip the Unkar Overlook spur and keep moving because the rains had started. I put on my rain jacket and my trash-compactor bag rainskirt.

As I hiked along the Unkar Wall, I looked back and saw one of the most amazing rainbows I've ever seen! Dropped the pack and scrambled to get my camera, trying to take shots without getting the camera soaked before the rainbow disappeared. My heart soared- this is why I hike, for the privilege of seeing exquisite moments like this.

I moved on, hiking in the intermittent rain toward Escalante Creek. The trail winds and climbs toward a high saddle and I got another rainbow, a little less intense than the first, but still gorgeous. In Escalante Creek, I found running water and took several liters so I wouldn't have to settle the increasingly silty Colorado. I took a break at Escalante Beach before my last climb up to access 75-mile Canyon. The route climbs and then turns to give a great view of the slot canyon below. I contoured back to the access point and scrambled down into the canyon. It made me uneasy to break the rule of not being in a slot canyon while it's raining.

The cream-colored Shinumo Quartzite slot canyon is a gorgeous place to be. I remembered back to a river trip where I visited not once, but twice in one evening on a full moon. The canyon opened up near the river and I camped at Nevills Beach. Soon after my dinner, it started raining and I got in the tent and fell asleep early.

Day 4

I woke at 4:30 in the morning after plenty of sleep. It was warmer and had stopped raining. Spent some time taking long-exposure pictures and writing in my journal. Yet another thing I love about solo hiking. I can do whatever I want, whenever I want and am never bored.

There are two routes to the Papago Wall, a low and a high route and I stayed low on the slabs above the water. There is a 30 foot scramble up the wall and then the route climbs to a rubble-choked gully called the Papago Slide. I didn't have any problems with the wall, but I took my pack off to hoist it up for one part and it would have been easier to keep it on. At the top of the wall, I saw the backpacker I'd met at Tanner below and he climbed up to join me.

The Papago Slide is a loose and nasty descent filled with every size of rock and I led the way, keeping plenty of room between me and him to avoid rockfall. There is a good route through it and it just takes being thoughtful with your movements. We got to Hance Rapid just as some boaters pulled in to scout from the opposite bank. It was super-fun to watch them go through. I hiked on to spend some quality alone time with Hance.

Hance Rapid is the first "10" on the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. The powerful waves churn through many rocks and holes and it is one of the most technical rapids on the river. To stand beside it on the rocks was incredible and I spent a long time thinking about my summers working as a river guide. I had decided at the end of this season that I will not be returning next summer- a bittersweet decision, but I am glad for all the things I learned, people I met and the opportunity to teach people about this amazing place. I've got some things in the works- a new website and lots of writing to do and part of that plan is to spend more time in the Grand Canyon on foot.

The rain was coming in again, so I put my trash compactor rainskirt on and got going. Red Canyon marks the beginning of the Tonto Trail, following the Tonto Platform as it began to rise from the river. The trail climbed and I got a good view of the historic Hance Asbestos Mine and the Granite Gorge. It rained on and off and when the clouds lifted there was a dusting of snow on the upper reaches of the Canyon.

I was trying to get to Hance Creek, my next water source, but all the time spent at the rapids was starting to catch up with me. I was probably going to have to roll into camp by headlamp. The trail contoured through Mineral Canyon and at the dry creek crossing, I heard the most wonderful sound- running water! Up a side ravine from the crossing was an ephemeral waterfall and I made my way over to it. This water meant that I didn't have to push to Hance Creek and that I could do a dry camp on the Tonto Platform, one of my favorite types of GC camps.

Even as I filtered water, the waterfall went dry. Right place at the right time, I guess. I Tontoured out of Mineral Canyon, looking for a place to camp and found the perfect spot complete with a little wall for a windbreak and nice sitting rocks. The views were outrageously good of Vishnu Temple, Wotans Throne and Angels Gate. It was the coldest night yet and very windy.

Day 5

The next morning, I was treated to an incredible sunrise and I spent hours writing, taking pictures and looking at maps for an upcoming adventure.

I got going around noon and hiked to Hance Creek. Upstream from the creek crossing are some lovely Tapeats ledges and I settled in for a day of not doing a whole lot. More writing, a short exploration up and downstream, and a nice chat with the other folks that were camped in the area. It was great to have a day to relax.

Day 6

I'd made a habit of listening to Miles Davis Kind of Blue in the morning while I got packed up and got hiking around 9:30 toward Page Springs. In most seasons this shady, fern-lined place would be a welcome place for a break but today it was so chilly I had to put several layers on while filtering. I enjoyed the historic trail construction in the Redwall ascent, especially the portion that has a giant quartz vein going through the trailbed. Got to Horseshoe Mesa and took a long break.

As I hiked up off the mesa I could see the area I'd traversed the last six days and downstream toward Zoroaster and Brahma Temples. Made it through the Supai and it was cold enough to need a fleece and hat while hiking uphill. I love the trail construction in the Coconino- riprap cobblestone and log cribbing to keep the trail on the hillside.

Patches of ice and snow appeared in the Toroweap and Kaibab, but not enough for me to put my traction on- if I'd been going downhill I'd have put them on for sure. I reached the parking lot feeling a lot better than I'd anticipated and made it over to Desert View Watchtower to see the sun set on my latest adventure.

It is hard to express how good this trip was for me. I've had a lot of great backpacking opportunities this year, but I haven't gotten as much solo time as usual. To move through the Canyon for days on foot with time to contemplate life, feeling like I have the whole place to myself- there is nothing better.
Culture
Culture
Mascot
Named place
Named place
Unkar Creek Rapids
Meteorology
Meteorology
Rainbow
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
_____________________
"May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view."
-Edward Abbey
http://www.desertsirena.wordpress.com
Nov 07 2014
gerchikov
avatar

 Triplogs 1

50 male
 Joined Nov 05 2014
 United States
New Hance Grandview Loop, AZ 
New Hance Grandview Loop, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Nov 07 2014
gerchikov
Hiking20.00 Miles
Hiking20.00 Miles   13 Hrs      1.54 mph
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Down New Hance, up Grandview in a dayhike following http://hikearizona.com/gps=7037 route. Spectacular if strenuous, daylight is the biggest issue -- try to get past Horseshoe Mesa and onto Grandview Trail by dusk, the rest of the climb is straightforward and can be done with a good light after dusk. Trailfinding is generally not a problem, cairns help a lot, but a couple of spots require close attention. Manage your water carefully -- there is none on the entire Grandview ascend.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
Mostly around creeks and bottoms of tributary canyons.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Very few this time of year, making the ones spotted more precious still.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hance Creek Light flow Light flow
Plenty to filter.

dry Red Canyon Dry Dry
Not a hint of water in the creek this late in fall in a very dry year.

dry Red Canyon Creek - GC Dry Dry
Not a hint of water in the creek this late in fall in a very dry year.
_____________________
2 archives
Jun 06 2014
Hippy
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 4
 Photos 1,823
 Triplogs 636

34 female
 Joined Dec 02 2009
 Grand Canyon
Grandview to New Hance, AZ 
Grandview to New Hance, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Jun 06 2014
Hippy
Backpack18.50 Miles 6,200 AEG
Backpack18.50 Miles   20 Hrs      0.93 mph
6,200 ft AEG
 no routes
Kidnapped my buddy Taylor to go on this trip with me, he'd never camped at the river before.

I prefer hiking down Grandview and I remember New Hance was SUPER easy hiking down, knew this trip would be cake!!

We left at 7am due to our ride to Grandview sleeping in, oops.got to the TH round 730,
The hike down GV was cake, made it to Horseshoe Mesa in just over an hour. Stopped to visit the cookhouse and explore the mines then we cruised...more like slid, down the Page Spring trail and took a short break at Hance Creek.

It was already hotter than hades down there by 10am when we cruised the Tonto. We had a mile left to the river when I realized it was Noon on the Tonto in June... "Who does that!?"we said in unison at one point.

It was deadly hot but we had hats, tons of water, at least 3L each plus an extra nalgene (topped off a half liter or so at Hance creek) and we both wore moisture wicking long sleeved shirts. We were both down to half a liter of water by the time we reached Hance Rapids, which is, I think, perfect!

Reached the river well before one in the afternoon, we crushed that trail pretty nicely considering the heat! Spent about 12 hours at the river, we'd picked out a great camp spot about 25ft from the river and a little shallow backeddy, about 2ft deep, just enough to wallow in!
We'd planned to actually camp overnight but the Canyon had other plans!!

We settled in, under the stars, on top of s tarp and super lightweight blanket...then the wind picked up (as usual) and the roar of the rapids all but ceased! I went to add a nalgene to our water container corral in the back eddy, the water had dropped a good 9 inches...ugh. No cold water for our hike out...

Wind got stronger. A tree actually snapped in half, huge clouds of sand and leaves flew from every direction. We wrapped bandanas around our faces and hastily turned my tarp into a tent with rocks, shoelaces, paracord and trekking poles. : rambo :

Then we squeezed in tight, back to back careful not to hit the rocks that held the trekking poles upright in the sand.
The wind lulled us to sleep alongside the muted groan that was Hance Rapids and 45 minutes later I awoke...

With a burning hot, icy cold, stinging, tingling, numb sensation on my left wrist...

You've gotta be kidding me was my first thought. I just got stung 3 times by a little bark scorpion. Really??!! Being awakened by a scorpion in your bed at 1am isn't the greatest wakeup call but whatevs .

We shook everything out, packed up, dunked my arm in the river then hiked out, leaving our riverside campsite around 2am.

New Hance is easy going up. The trail, for me, was pretty tame, obvious to follow in the dark. The longest most annoying part (or so it seemed, could've been lack of sleep) was above the Red wall, the Supai layer felt like it took hours!! (In reality we were moving up the trail for 3 1/2 hours) we stopped at the camp above the red wall and slept for a good 45min then continued on. We made it to the TH at sunrise. Perfect timing!

New Hance was an easy hike but I can imagine hiking out in the heat of the sun in June would not be pleasant!

We then thumbed a ride back to the village from the first car that we saw, score! The drive was a nurse and insisted I let her take us to the clinic for my scorpion stings haha

Despite all the random mishaps the trip was great, red canyon is stunning as always and I discovered I'd rather hike DOWN GV and UP NH from now on!
Haven't tried it? Do it! Its worth it.
_____________________
Canyon Freak Adventures!
Jan 25 2014
toddak
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 5
 Photos 1,186
 Triplogs 450

55 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Puhoynix, AZ
New Hance TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Jan 25 2014
toddak
Hiking23.00 Miles 5,000 AEG
Hiking23.00 Miles   12 Hrs      1.92 mph
5,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners none no partners
Down Grandview (icy for the first half mile or so), east on the Tonto then up the super gnarly New Hance. Road walked between the trailheads.
_____________________
Nov 15 2013
John9L
avatar

 Guides 6
 Routes 174
 Photos 5,073
 Triplogs 1,634

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
New Hance to Grandview, AZ 
New Hance to Grandview, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Nov 15 2013
John9L
Backpack18.50 Miles 6,200 AEG
Backpack18.50 Miles2 Days         
6,200 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
I met up with Hippy for a fun backpack in our favorite Canyon. I departed Phoenix right after work on Thursday night and drove up to the Canyon. We left bright and early on Friday and met up with Niko. He offered to shuttle us from Grandview and would hike the first few miles with us. We started hiking a little before 9am.

Right from the start New Hance aggressively descends through the Kaibab, Toroweap and Coconino layers. The going is a little rough but fine. I did this backpack last year and remember it being very hard on the body especially my knees and ankle. This trip would prove to be much easier. We made quick work of the top three layers and then things level off a bit. We cruised on down and took our first break at the top of the Redwall. The views are just stunning into Red Canyon and the North Rim. From there we began the traverse along the Supai. I remember this section being a little rough last year but it was cake this go around. I don’t know if the trail is easier or if I’m just more experienced. Regardless we cruised to the Redwall break.

Once at the Redwall break Niko waved goodbye and started his return to the rim. Thanks again Niko! Hippy and I continued down the break and then proceeded to Red Canyon. We both felt great and started joking about hiking all the way to Hance Creek. We continued on and passed a couple of hikers on their way out. They said there were two groups below and one was camped out by the river. I said to Hippy we’re continuing on if a group is camped at the Mesquite Tree site. She was game! The rest of the hike to the rapid was uneventful. The only things worth mentioning is we blasted by a group of six guys taking a breather and there was some salty water in the bed of Red Canyon.

We arrived at Hance Rapid around 12:30pm and both of us felt great. We saw the group at the Mesquite Tree and decided to continue to Hance Creek after taking a long break and enjoying the rapid. We enjoyed lunch and relaxed at a fantastic spot nestled above the rapid. After getting some cartwheel pics we continued west on the Tonto. As we proceeded some storm clouds moved in and it started to drizzle. We continued hiking and passed through Mineral Canyon and made our way to an overhang along the Tonto. We took another break here and it was perfect timing. The skies opened and a moderate rain fell followed by hail and lightning. We were both fairly protected and hung out here for a good hour as the storm passed. After we felt it was safe we continued and then saw a fantastic double rainbow. I joked about the Double Rainbow Youtube video and we took some silly pics. From there we continued on and reached Hance Creek as dusk set in.

Once at camp we got the tent set up and started making dinner as darkness set in. It was beautiful out as we boiled water and began eating. While eating another storm rapidly moved in and it brought strong wind and rain. We moved everything into the tent but as we did the wind blew my tent down. I had it set up as a Fastpitch and the wind blew my tent poles down. Hippy said to secure the guy lines on my tent. I quickly secured them to some large rocks and that did the trick because the tent was stable after that. We enjoyed our dinner and then turned in for the night.

We woke on our second day and took our time having breakfast and tearing down camp. From there we made the long and slow hike out the Grandview trail. Our bodies were very sore and achy after the big first day. Along the hike out we spoke glowingly of John Hance and Peter Berry for their wonderful trail construction. Hippy especially loves the cobblestone work along the Grandview Trail.

This was a really great trip and New Hance is one of my favorite trails in the Canyon. It was much easier compared to last year. Definitely add this loop to your list when you’re ready to get off the corridor and want a fun challenge. Route finding is very straightforward along this loop.
Culture
Culture
Campsite
Meteorology
Meteorology
Double Rainbow Rainbow
_____________________
Nov 15 2013
Hippy
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 4
 Photos 1,823
 Triplogs 636

34 female
 Joined Dec 02 2009
 Grand Canyon
New Hance to Grandview, AZ 
New Hance to Grandview, AZ
 
Backpack avatar Nov 15 2013
Hippy
Backpack18.50 Miles 6,200 AEG
Backpack18.50 Miles2 Days         
6,200 ft AEG
 no routes
-
Deliver to Captain John Hance, Grand Canyon, AZ
Captain Hance, today I embark on another journey. My first trek down your most recent trail aptly named New Hance. I must point out one thing. Peter Barry has an amazing parking area at the trailhead of his Grandview Trail, your trail deserves better than a "No Parking" sign and a ditch to prevent vehicles from parking in the dirt.
Thanks for your time,
Hippy
-

To John Hance,
Mister Hance, your trail is spectacular, the views are stunning and the trail itself is in great condition, it is much easier than many have previously stated. I am very impressed. I cannot say the same for my hiking companions, they seem to be having a hard time staying on their feet as the trail is a bit steep in places. Have you seen the stromatolites along the creek in Red Canyon?! I haven't but I heard they're there, I'll have to take another trip out there and find out. Speaking of, the water in Red Canyon was a salty sweet, probably not best for drinking but my innards haven't thrown a fit yet.
One of my companions decided to abandon trail just before the red wall break, it was wonderful having him along I do hope to hike with him again sometime soon!
Yours truly,
H
-

Dear John,
Hi again, I just wanted to tell you that your Rapid, Hance Rapids is THE most beautiful site, with the diabase dike in the hakatai shale at the head of the rapid, John I think I love you! You, your stories, your trail, your rapids. Yes, this might be my favorite adventure thus far!
I only hope you had next to nothing to do with the Tonto trail out to Hance Creek, the trail went wonky all over the place at some points and in others it was built up onto giant boulders causing little tiny me to do some climbing up on top of them. Although we both know I loved it!
We saw a beautiful double rainbow along the tonto heading for the creek in your name, we got rained on and hailed on and almost had to bivvy up under the tapeats overhang but the day was young and beautiful and we pressed on.
Camping at Hance Creek was superb, the wind was atrocious but extravagant at the same time! It made for quite a fun evening wrestling with tent ties and poles and wrapping our food up in my rain jacket and stuffing it in the ratsack, it worked quite nicely actually.
This will be my last letter to you...for now. Look into some trail head parking areas, ok?
Love always.
Hippy
-

Dearest Peter Barry,
I know we haven't spoken in some time but I thought I'd drop a hello. I hiked up to Page Spring the other day with my dear friend John, don't be jealous, I will always love you and your trail. I do wonder though, who had the grand idea to make it such a steep ascent to Horseshoe Mesa? Did you put your mules through that hell? I might have to speak with you about animal cruelty laws nowadays because honestly I'd never allow my mules to go up that trail. I on the other hand thoroughly enjoyed it, steep as it was! Page Spring was dripping nicely and the pool was a beautiful Chrystal clear green. We explored two or three of your mine shafts on our way up, the trail is quite straightforward and I thank you for your foresight on such matters.
All my love
Hippy
-

Dear Petey B,
Apparently your trail along Horseshoe Mesa is not as simple and straightforward as previously thought, a family lost their 17 year old son on the mesa, John and I thought nothing of it until I spotted the boy heading out on the east arm of the mesa, so of course I hefted off my pack and tracked him down and reunited him with his family. I must say he was rather baffled when I ran up to him, he pulled off his hat and brushed his hands through his hair and stuttered through his words and attempted to convince me that he was not lost. Boys...
John and I tailed him up the trail briefly when we discovered the reason for his becoming "lost", this explains the goofy grin on his face! The boy was 9Ling like a fool!!
I absolutely LOVE heading up Grandview Trail! Thank you Petey for this lovely historic jaunt through the grandest geology we have to play with!
Love always
Hippy
-

Peter Barry,
Listen, I know we've have our ups and down, mostly downs but today I'm heading UP and I MUST protest, my love! Cobblestones?! Two foot tall stepping stairs?! Peter, darling, I might be stubborn but with my short legs and tiny feet I am no mule! Please my love, reconsider this madness! Cobblestones!! Good grief man!!
Hippy
-

Dear Peter Barry,
I'll take crazy John Hance and his lack of trail head parking anytime, go :pk: yourself.
Love,
Hippy
-
Meteorology
Meteorology
Rainbow
_____________________
Canyon Freak Adventures!
Apr 07 2013
JuanJaimeiii
avatar

 Routes 566
 Photos 7,971
 Triplogs 1,704

53 male
 Joined Jan 30 2011
 Chandler, AZ
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ 
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 07 2013
JuanJaimeiii
Hiking15.24 Miles 6,989 AEG
Hiking15.24 Miles   11 Hrs   18 Mns   1.41 mph
6,989 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 
1st trip
Partners partners
Dave1
John9L
johnlp
So I got invited along to go on some Grand Canyon hike with the boys. Little did I know the adventure I was in for. Personally I am not a big off trail guy but I don't mind a little here and there. This hike started on the "Old Hance" trail. I'm not sure when it was a trail but it certainly isn't one now. We basically went Rim to River off trail. :o

Along the way we encountered a group that was going to a cave (Tse'an Bida) to do some "research". This happened to be the cave that Dave was looking for so we decided to tag along. That was pretty cool and we only went as far as the opening and signed a register.

Then we basically followed Hance Creek down the ravine. The creek was flowing lightly and there were some waterfalls and a couple pools along the way. It was getting warm out so I took off my shirt, dropped my pack and jumped in. After that we continued on. There are a couple pour offs along the way that you must bypass by going up and around. The spots are carined and there are three in total. As we were nearing the Colorado a couple of the guys were starting to tire. I wanted to press on so I made a decision to continue with or without them. Soon enough Dave and JohnLP came up over the hill and in a half hour we were at Sockdolager Rapids. :y: John9L decided it would be best for him to turn back and we would all meet up at the car later.

From here we simply made our way back up to the Tonto and then on up to Miners/Page Spring. From there it was up to Horseshoe Mesa and on out via the Grandview trail.

I enjoyed seeing the Cave, the Mines, the and of course the Rapids. It wasn't my typical hike but it was certainly a fun adventure. Thanks for the invite Gents.
Fauna
Fauna
Bighorn Sheep
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Hance Creek Light flow Light flow

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water less than maxwater less than max Page Spring Quart per minute Quart per minute
_____________________
Apr 07 2013
John9L
avatar

 Guides 6
 Routes 174
 Photos 5,073
 Triplogs 1,634

male
 Joined Mar 12 2004
 Scottsdale, AZ
Old Hance TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 07 2013
John9L
Hiking15.00 Miles 5,300 AEG
Hiking15.00 Miles
5,300 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Partners partners
Dave1
johnlp
JuanJaimeiii
Met up with Dave, Johnlp & JJ3 for an adventurous hike down the Old Hance Trail. And thanks Haley for shuttling us over from Grandview!

Haley dropped us off at the fire road a little after 7am and we were off. We started by dropping off the rim and were able to follow the original trail for about a minute and then it was gone. From there it was a bushwhack down the ravine. We basically looked for the best route with the least amount of undergrowth blocking our way. It was a mixture of following a rock laden draw, scrambling and down climbing and then fighting cacti, trees and everything else added for good measure. We made slow progress as we slipped and slided on down. We were constantly reassessing our route. You can see the break in the Redwall at the bottom and that was our goal. We continued down and tried to make our way towards the break which is easier said than done. There were a few times where we cliffed out and had to work our way over to find a better way down. The good thing is there are lots of game trails and also signs of human traffic. As we neared the bottom we located a good use trail and followed that down to the Redwall break. With that we found ourselves in the bed of Hance Creek.

Once in Hance Creek we started making our way down and Dave said there is a pour off that we needed to bypass. We easily found the bypass and it’s well worn with foot traffic. After that we were back in the creek bed and the going was much easier. After a few minutes I noticed some people up ahead. There was a group of a half dozen and they were heading for the cave Tse An Bida which lies in the Redwall. Dave, LP & JJ3 ended up following them while I hung out in the creek bottom. While they were up there I made my way down the creek where I was able to see their route to the cave. It looks tricky. After an hour or so the three of them returned to the creek and we continued down canyon.

Next up we ran into the spring and the remains of Hance’s tourist camp. There are the remains of a few structures and a corral. After a look around we continued down Hance Creek and set a brisk pace. We then arrived at the junction of Hance Creek and the Tonto Trail. While there we pumped some water and talked about our options. It was late morning and we wanted to head for Sockdolager which is a six mile round trip. We started off and cruised down the first two miles of the creek. At that point we reached a pour off and had to locate the bypass. While looking we decided to have lunch. By this time it was getting close to 1pm and I was thinking about the long hike out. JJ3 was able to locate the bypass and with great motivation convinced us to follow. The first bypass is a little sketchy as you climb up a good two hundred feet and then drop down a drainage filled with rocks. We continued and found the second bypass. At this point the time was flying by and I felt my energy draining. I decided to turn tail and start hiking out. I came up with a plan to let the other’s know my progress on my way out. I would build a few cairns along my return and would ask the backpackers at the Tonto junction to let the others know I passed.

I had very low energy returning up Hance Creek. I arrived at the Tonto junction and sat and chatted with the Backpackers there. From there I connected on the Tonto and cruised up to Miner’s Spring (Page Spring) where I took a break and pumped some additional water. Our plan was for me to wait there for the others but I grew restless. I then built a few cairns and spelled “9L” with an arrow pointing towards Horseshoe Mesa for the others to see. While hiking up to Horseshoe Mesa I was able to spot the rest of the crew making their way up. I continued on and built another cairn with “9L” on Horseshoe Mesa. I could see the others down below heading for Miner’s Spring.

Once on Horseshoe Mesa I started the final hike to the rim. It started as an enjoyable hike as you traverse the Supai. Things started getting tough as I hit the cobblestone switchbacks through the Hermit Shale. My pace greatly slowed as I proceeded through the Coconino. I kept looking back towards Horseshoe Mesa and was able to spot everyone else making progress up the trail. As I neared the top I saw a familiar face hiking down. It was Haley with a coworker friend. We stopped and chatted. They were on their way to the Cave of Domes. I asked her to let the others know she passed me. From there it was a very slow grind to the rim. I was glad I turned around early in Hance Creek because I had little to no energy. Once on the rim, I was very happy to see the tourist because I knew my hike was done!

This was one of the toughest 15 mile hikes of my life! Old Hance really sucks energy and is very difficult going. I doubt I ever hike it again. Hance Creek is magnificent! I have an overnight permit for mid May and I plan on going all the way to Sockdolager Rapid. Grandview is a grind after all this but is beautiful as always! The Canyon only gets better!

My GPS Route has been posted to Route Manager. I plan on doing some edits on it and will post here when complete.
Geology
Geology
Zoroaster Granite
_____________________
Apr 07 2013
johnlp
avatar

 Guides 1
 Routes 9
 Photos 4,556
 Triplogs 3,670

63 male
 Joined Mar 16 2008
 chandler,az
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ 
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 07 2013
johnlp
Hiking15.24 Miles 6,989 AEG
Hiking15.24 Miles   11 Hrs   28 Mns   1.39 mph
6,989 ft AEG      30 Mns Break
 no routes
1st trip
This is a very cool intense hike taking in a route that is definitely less traveled. The Old Hance trail is steep loose and kind of brushy, but nothing over the top. It was nice to get far enough down canyon to where the brush is minimal.

The hike up to the Tse' An Bida Cave involves some scrambling and a little exposure. The alcove is enormous. The cave goes all the way through the redwall, We just checked out the beginning and signed the register.

From here the hiking became easier as we worked our way down Hance Creek, stopping to filter water at the Tonto crossing, and continued down stream. After a mile or two the canyon tightens up and the going is more challenging and fun. We missed the first bypass and spent quite a bit of time and effort trying to find a way past the first big pouroff.

By the time we reached the bypass it was almost our turn around time. JJ, who was now shirtless and packless, was ranting and raving from atop of a climb around wanting to continue to the river. We scrambled up the steep slope and back down to return to the creek bed.

Once we got to the second bypass we were at our predetermined turn around time. It was warm and we knew we had a long uphill hike to get out of the canyon. JJ, still shirtless and packless, scambled up the steep rocky bypass and started to try to persuade us to continue. After a couple minutes he said he was going to the river and disappeared. 9L decided to start heading back. Dave and I started up the bypass in case we needed to show the authorities where to find the body (JJ).

Once through the second bypass we could see by JJs GPS that we had less than half a mile to get to Sockdolager rapids. The final bypass is a little easier than the first two and you can see the rapids from the top. We worked our way down to the river. Mission accomplished!

Getting back up Hance Creek to the Tonto went fairly quick now that we knew where we were going. 9L left signs for us and talked to folks along the way, so we had a good idea of where he was on his return.

We stopped at Miners/Page Spring, filtered water, and started up to Horseshoe Mesa. From there it is up the Grandview and out. Pretty tough after all the energy we had previuosly expended. Saw Hippy on the way out on her way to Cave of the Domes. Thanks for the shuttle to get us started!

An epic hike with great company. Thanks John9L for setting this one up. Thanks JJ for driving.
Named place
Named place
Hance Creek Sockdolager Rapids
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
“Good people drink good beer.” Hunter S Thompson
Apr 07 2013
Dave1
avatar

 Routes 29
 Photos 1,548
 Triplogs 1,802

44 male
 Joined Jan 25 2009
 Phoenix, AZ
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ 
Old Hance to Grand View with Rapids, AZ
 
Hiking avatar Apr 07 2013
Dave1
Hiking15.24 Miles 6,989 AEG
Hiking15.24 Miles   11 Hrs   25 Mns   1.46 mph
6,989 ft AEG   1 Hour    Break
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
John9L
johnlp
JuanJaimeiii
This was my third time down Old Hance and was sort of a disaster as far as route finding. For some reason I just couldn't find the right groove. Seems like my first time was the most direct. Unfortunately you don't always remember your first. I felt kind of embarrassed that I couldn't find a better route down on my 3rd try! Anyway, we eventually made it down to the creek bed but unfortunately we missed the old ladder, the railroad spike and the can-o-rocks. Ran into a large group of "researchers" in the creek that were heading up to Tse'an Bida. We also had plans to go there. Kinda bummed to see another group in an otherwise lightly traveled area but it actually worked out well as they knew the correct route up to the cave from the creek bed and we really had no clue. They didn't seem to mind us following them. The cave route and entrance was awesome, I'm glad we took the extra time to check it out.

The hike down Hance Creek below the Tonto crossing was awesome. Also glad we decided to do this and thanks to JJ for pushing me and LP to go all the way to the river. So if your doing this one, remember the 3 major bypasses are creek right then left then left again.

The trek up and down lower Hance really wore me out and that made the rest of the hike kind of a slog. That and heading through the brush right off the bat set off my allergies for the rest of the day (and next 2). Then I ran out of water on Grandview but LP hooked me up with some more. If not for the top-notch company and awesome scenery, this day would have been miserable.

I think we were all too tired to do the upper Old Grandview section so we skipped it. Or maybe I was the only one that planned on it?

I'd also like to give mad props to The Hippie for waking up early, picking me up and driving the 3 of us to Old Hance Trailhead! Thanks again! And thanks John, John, and I don't want to forget John, for letting me tag along!
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
_____________________
Oct 29 2012
autumnstars
avatar

 Guides 25
 Routes 19
 Photos 558
 Triplogs 1,385

female
 Joined Jan 04 2011
 Las Vegas, NV
Grandview TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Oct 29 2012
autumnstars
Backpack42.43 Miles 5,762 AEG
Backpack42.43 Miles6 Days         
5,762 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
A leisurely autumn backpack along the Tonto Trail.
Completing this trip leaves me but one section of this fascinating trail yet to hike - the Gems.

Day 0
Quick visit to the backcountry office to get the latest water reports and figure out where to leave my bike (aka, shuttle "vehicle").
Got a site at Mather Campground and then walked out to the rim to watch sunset from near the Geology Museum. The paved trail was fairly crowded, but the tourists at this time of year always seem so much more mellow than in summer.

Day 1
Last-minute packing and the drive to the Grandview trailhead, followed by a quick breakfast of champions (a mixed berry muffin plus Rockstar juice drink), and I was on my way down the Grandview Trail. Smoke from managed fires on the north rim had settled into the top reaches of the canyon overnight, making the highest buttes, mesas, and towers look like mountain peaks rising through thick cloud cover. A very different perspective than usual!

The hike down to Houseshoe Mesa seemed to go quickly, with a few ravens for company and improving views as the smoke moved out. Just at the mesa, a 3-person group was eating lunch under some of the trees - they would be staying in Cottonwood. I pushed on with a more shaded location in mind for lunch, as the temperature was decidedly rising. The trail across the mesa has been re-routed somewhat to avoid taking you very close to most of Pete Berry's mine shafts, while the ones you still go by now sport fresh new radiation and/or bat signs. Hance Creek is a great place to camp, and I enjoyed chatting with a fellow backpacker. It was interesting to hear his stories from before Grand Canyon instituted the permit system for backpackers :o

Day 2
Hiked around Horseshoe Mesa to Cottonwood Creek. The creek was flowing well, making it a great place to spend time relaxing and filtering water. Saw 5 people day-hiking from their base camps on Horseshoe Mesa or in Cottonwood. Dry camp on a point just after coming out of the Cottonwood drainage - a site with an amazing view. A deer or bighorn got quite a start when he/she almost ran into my tent in the dark! Guess it kinda startled me, too. :scared:

Day 3
Spent many hours hiking around and through Grapevine Canyon. Grapevine is a very extensive side canyon, meaning extensive "Tontouring." Encountered a grand canyon rattlesnake today :) and a very friendly young couple hiking east. Dry camp in Boulder Canyon - very quiet and relaxed night.

Day 4
Hiked from Boulder Canyon to Cremation, with a side-trip down Lonetree for water. Saw zero people today :D. Dry camp in the middle arm of Cremation. Super quiet night - since this drainage is always dry, there were not many insects singing.

Day 5
Hiked from Cremation to Indian Gardens. The climbs up out of the arms of Cremation are pretty steep and rocky. Nothing serious, but easier done up than down. Grinding up out of the most western arm, I noticed a female bighorn watching from atop the nearby cliffs. Also noted some great-looking camping spots west of Cremation. Overall nice hike the rest of the way to Indian Gardens, where there were simply hoards of people compared with what I had become used to over the last several days. Hiked out to Plateau Point for sunset, where I talked with a very nice ranger. She was hanging out waiting to haze a young condor away from the point.

Day 6
Hiked up the Bright Angel Trail to the rim. This hike always results in quite the shock as you encounter more and more tourists the higher you climb. Slow and steady is the key on this trail, since it is graded for mules it is never too steep just unrelenting. Water at both resthouses has been turned off for the year.

After hiking out, it was straight to the backcountry office to provide water reports. They kindly let my stow my pack in a closet while I rode my bike back to the Grandview trailhead to get my vehicle. They are always so nice. :)

Overall, this was a spendid trip.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Isolated
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Wildflowers Observation Isolated

dry Boulder Creek Dry Dry
Stayed the night, but didn't see any water.
Didn't look very hard, though.


water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Burro Spring Gallon per minute Gallon per minute
Great flow right across Tonto crossing.
The cottonwoods along this spring outflow are numerous and healthy.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Cottonwood Creek Medium flow Medium flow
Good flow at Tonto crossing. Pools deep enough for a filter hard to find, but one good one right at crossing.

dry Cremation Creek Dry Dry
Dry, dry, dry!

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Garden Creek Medium flow Medium flow
Normal strong flow. Nice cold water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Grapevine Creek Medium flow Medium flow
Good flow in the east arm at the Tonto crossing with good bedrock pools.
A few spots of bedrock in the west arm damp, at best.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Hance Creek Medium flow Medium flow
Good flow with lots of tadpoles in the pools.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water less than max Lonetree Creek - GC Medium flow Medium flow
Two stagnant (and scummy) pools in the bedrock just below Tonto crossing.
Good flow at spring approx 20-30 minutes down-canyon near 2 cottonwood trees.
Well worth the quick jaunt down this fabulous canyon for better water.

water 1 out of 5water 2 out of 5water 3 out of 5water 4 out of 5 Pipe Spring Gallon + per minute Gallon + per minute
Strong flow at Tonto crossing.
_____________________
"Let it ride / Let it roll / Let it go"
Sep 22 2012
chumley
avatar

 Guides 78
 Routes 679
 Photos 14,868
 Triplogs 1,537

47 male
 Joined Sep 18 2002
 Tempe, AZ
New Hance TrailNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Backpack avatar Sep 22 2012
chumley
Backpack19.70 Miles 6,489 AEG
Backpack19.70 Miles2 Days   2 Hrs   55 Mns   
6,489 ft AEG32 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Partners partners
John9L
squatpuke
Tough_Boots
Ok, before I even start, let me apologize for not being able to pare down to less than 90 photos. I took 420, so I actually did eliminate over 300! But they are amazing. Some are just stunning to look at, while others tell more of a story of the hike. And also for the lengthy triplog! Thanks for your patience! ;)

Day 1: Getting There
I was out too late Thursday night and didn't feel good Friday morning. Got a late start out of the house and then stuck in traffic. John and Kyle waited patiently as I showed up over half an hour late. I apologized profusely for my uncharacteristic idiocy and we hopped in my truck and drove to Flagstaff. After picking up Larry at work we grabbed a delicious lunch at Crystal Creek and drove to the canyon. After setting up at Mather for the night, we went for a short hike to Shoshone Point (triplog/photos) and Moran Point where we could look down into Red Canyon and the route we would hike in the morning.

We drove back to Mather, and had a solid meal at the Maswik Cafeteria before heading back to camp. A few beers and some snacks around the fire on a perfect night that dropped only into the mid-40s.

Day 2: New Hance Trail
We broke camp around 8am, and by the time we had stopped at the store, dropped off people and gear, and shuttled my truck to Grandview, we hit the trail around 9:15. Somehow, this was my first ever trip below the rim (Havasu trips excluded). When Larry first heard me say that he clearly wondered if I was up for the difficulty this trail would provide, but didn't actually say anything. I had been told of the extreme nature of this trail, so when I actually got to hiking it, I was pleasantly surprised. Don't misunderstand. It's a steep, rocky, unmaintained mess of a trail with difficult sections, short downclimbs, rockslide traverses, exposure, etc. I just had mentally prepared for worse, so I was sort of happy.

Not to mention, the expansive views of the Grand Canyon have a way of easing some of the pain in my knee caused by carrying a pack down such a steep and crazy trail. Once the trail drops into Red Canyon, the last couple of miles are fairly easy going. There are a couple of short downclimbs and the rocky creek bottom requires attention to footing, but after the steep descent it is a welcome break. Eventually the roar of Hance Rapids can be heard, followed a short while later by the first sighting of the Colorado River.

Day 2: River Rafters
We left the trailhead at the same time as another group of 4 hikers, but they were from out of state and didn't arrive until 90 minutes after us. (We took 4 hours to get the 6.9 miles to the river). So we set up camp in a nice spot under some Mesquite trees and relaxed for a while. A group of rafters floated up to the beach and got out to hike downstream and scout the rapids before proceeding. We visited with them for a while. They were a private group from Salt Lake City, and had been on the river for a week, with two more weeks to go. We asked them for some water since the Colorado was a very silted chocolate and filtering would be difficult. Unfortunately, they were low on water themselves. Luckily, they weren't short on beer and offered us a couple. I had a Tecate and a Rolling Rock, and have never been happier! We then photographed and filmed their passage through the rapids and got their emails to send them when they finish. (http://youtu.be/OlLVZq4PiT4)

Day 2: Escalante Route
John, Larry and I decided to hike upstream a mile or so to the Neville Rapids, leaving Kyle back at camp to ward off the ravens. The route is overgrown and rocky, with crazy Tamarisk trying to take over the entire shoreline. At .75 miles, we reached a large rockfall and the shoreline ended at a cliff. The Escalante Route headed up the rockfall and we decided it wasn't worth the effort. Another group was visible upstream camped on the north bank, presumably a rafting group. So we headed back to camp.

Day 2: Camping with Mice
Back at camp we cooked up some well-earned dinner before darkness set in and then just relaxed under the mesquite trees which were nicely lit up by John's camping party lights. Kyle and Larry hit their tents pretty early, around 8, while John and I stayed up for a little while. At one point, Larry came out of his tent to report hearing a rattle near my tent. (The rapids are so loud that we couldn't hear something like that unless quite close to it). I didn't think it was a snake but couldn't figure out what else it could be, and we looked around carefully just to make sure. Sitting back down, under the tree, I was startled by something that clearly moved just a few inches from me. I jumped up to realize that it was a mouse. We later learned that Kyle had spilled a lot of gatorade powder in the sand! Anyway, for the next half hour or so, John and I were entertained by this fearless mouse, and a much more skittish, but larger, relative, as they darted in between us and around the rocks we were sitting on.

Mice are amazingly adept at climbing trees! It was fun to watch as one got up into a tree and down onto one of our rat sacks. It explored every inch of the rat sack, trying to get in, but eventually figured out that it wasn't going to happen. It descended the tree again and resumed eating the sugary gatorade in the sand at our feet.

We went to bed, and woke up in the morning happy to see that the mice had not been able to penetrate our defenses. Everything was untouched!

Day 3: Tonto Trail
We were up early Sunday morning and on the trail by 8. The eastern terminus of the Tonto Trail is at Hance Rapids, and we began a slow and scenic ascent up from the banks of the river. The first mile and a half parallels the river offering great views both up and down canyon. Eventually, however, the trail turns south heading up Mineral Canyon. From this turn onwards, the Tonto has very little elevation gain/loss, making for a fairly quick and easy hike. After crossing Mineral, the Tonto swings back north and then ascends up some more and around Ayer Point to a nice view overlooking the steep and deep Hance Creek drainage. We continued on the Tonto parallel to Hance Creek until the Tonto crosses in a refreshingly green valley with a few shady Cottonwood trees along the trickle of Hance Creek. It's here where we set up camp after about 6.5 miles and 1200 feet above the river.

Day 3: Hance Creek
After viewing the creek from above along the Tonto, we decided that the 3+ miles of off-trail exploration down Hance to the Sockdolager Rapids would be too much to accomplish in the afternoon. With a reliable source of clear water for filtering, I started mixing drinks and we had a fantastic afternoon and evening. The weather was great, with a lot of cloudiness, mild temperatures, and even a brief rain shower that required us all to put the rainflys on our tents. There were no mice that we could tell, though I was puzzled by some strange looking droppings that may have been debris from the cottonwood tree above? We were all in bed pretty early again.

Day 4: Hance Creek to Horseshoe Mesa
We were up early again, anticipating the long, slow, steep climb out of the canyon. The first half-mile along the Tonto was flat and easy, before a cairned (but not signed) fork in the trail. Heading left, we left the Tonto trail and headed up the unnamed trail toward Miners Spring. Looking into this drainage, I actually stopped and verified my GPS position on the map since I couldn't imagine that there was a trail leading up this dead-end canyon with towering cliffs on all sides. Sure enough, however, the map said this was the way! The next mile of hiking became increasingly steep as it ascended the drainage. I was a little bit ahead of the others when I reached the turnoff for Miners Spring after only about 35min, and was surprised to find a solo hiker who had just descended from Horseshoe Mesa. We all topped off our water and took a brief break for some energy snacks before continuing uphill.

John led the way for this stretch, which is an incredibly steep and exposed section of trail. It rises about 700 feet in 3/4 mile, and I decided I would hate camping on the mesa, having to make this round-trip just for water! The views are incredible, and we stopped frequently to enjoy the ruggedness of this part of the canyon, taking nearly an hour to make the final climb. The trail goes right past an old mine, which is now gated closed so access isn't possible. After observing a large vulture endlessly gliding along the updrafts against the canyon walls, we finally reached the mesa. Apparently Kyle had a little mishap on the way to our predetermined meeting point at the old stone cabin where we took another break for food and hydration. We had gone 2.5 miles and gained about 1200 feet over 1:45min. Just 3 miles and 2500 feet to go!!

Day 4: Horseshoe Mesa to Grandview Point
I was planning on this being the most miserable part of the hike. I knew only that it was going to be steep. But I had 4 liters of water, some good snacks, and a mindset ready to do it. A bunch of clouds rolled in just as we started, cooling things off and even dropping a few sprinkles from the sky. The first 1.5 miles was awesome. The grade was much less than I had anticipated, and I was making great time and feeling great. I passed a group coming down for the day, and a NPS employee going to check on water in Cottonwood Creek. The views were getting better, and the late summer sun was low enough in the sky that there were ample shaded spots to catch my breath.

And then I hit the switchbacks. Wow. They are steep. And relentless. The last 1.5 miles is a non-stop grinder rising 1500 feet. When I got to the saddle, Larry asked if we were going to take a break, but despite the climb, I was feeling good and making great time. I was motivated by the ice-filled cooler in my truck at the top and decided to press on without a break. I did take numerous little breath-catcher/photo ops, but nothing more than 20-30 seconds each. Eventually, I heard German and Japanese being spoken and knew that I was almost there! Just around the next corner, I could see the rock wall at the viewpoint, and tourists with cameras all over the place.

I just hiked past them all and went right to my truck. Shoes, socks, shirt came off and I drank an ice cold vitamin water, followed by equally cold and more enjoyable Dales Pale Ale and a Mudshark IPA. We all took a group shot and headed for Flagstaff, spending most of the trip talking about exactly what kind of pizza (and how much) we would all eat when we got there!

It was a great trip with an awesome group of people. Thanks to John for doing most of the planning legwork and to Larry (and his wife) for helping with the shuttle. I can't wait for my next adventure in the Canyon!
Flora
Flora
Salt Cedar
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light

dry Red Canyon Creek - GC Dry Dry
Not even an old pool in the rocks.
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Championing breakfast since 1994.
Mar 17 2012
toddak
avatar

 Guides 8
 Routes 5
 Photos 1,186
 Triplogs 450

55 male
 Joined Nov 15 2005
 Puhoynix, AZ
Sockdolager Rapid via Hance CreekNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Canyoneering avatar Mar 17 2012
toddak
Canyoneering19.50 Miles 5,000 AEG
Canyoneering19.50 Miles   10 Hrs      1.95 mph
5,000 ft AEG
Basic Canyoneering - Scrambling; easy climbing/downclimbing; frequent hand use; rope recommended; easy exit
A - Dry or little water; shallow or avoidable water; no wet/dry suit
II - Normally requires a half day
 no routes
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
Beauty (water-sculpted pink granite / black schist narrows) and
The Beast (the climb back up Grandview).
_____________________
Nov 22 2009
Vaporman
avatar

 Guides 2
 Routes 4
 Photos 8,687
 Triplogs 931

41 male
 Joined Mar 28 2005
 SLC, Utah
Tonto Trail: New Hance Trail to Grandview TrNorthwest, AZ
Northwest, AZ
Hiking avatar Nov 22 2009
Vaporman
Hiking19.00 Miles 5,000 AEG
Hiking19.00 Miles   9 Hrs   40 Mns   1.97 mph
5,000 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Partners partners
toddak
Todd and I woke up Sunday morning to it being 20*, which made breaking down camp and setting up the shuttle rather chilly. :o He dropped me off at the New Hance TH while he drove to the Grandview TH and rode his bike back. I paced the road and did jumping jacks to stay warm. :lol: He showed up at first light and we dropped into New Hance to tackle the upper loosed & steep section while enjoying the early morning views of Coronado Butte. Our legs were still rather cold at first, but we didn't find the trail too difficult. We traversed over to were it drops down the Red Wall section and didn't find that very challenging either. Then made short work of the Red Wash and enjoyed the Hance Rapids before heading west along the Tonto. It was rather different to be doing a section of the Tonto while climbing up from the river as the trail ascends above the beginning of the inner gorge; I'm so used to being along the Tonto Plateau every other section of the Tonto... We cruised along the Tonto into Mineral Canyon and the deep Hance Creek under perfectly clear skies and 65� weather. :D We eventually crossed Hance Creek before finding the junction for the steep climb up to Horseshoe Mesa. It was a little disheartening to realize we have another 2400ft of climbing to go in only 3 miles but at least the first section was rather gradual... :lol: My paced slowed down to about half for those final two miles, but the views are amazing and though steep that trail is still in great shape. :sweat:
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Yea, canyoneering is an extreme sport... EXTREMELY dramatic!!! =p
average hiking speed 1.65 mph
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WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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