Rim 2 Rim 2 Rim: What I Packed and Other Misc.

Well, I’m back and I’m alive!

It was absolutely incredible and I’m sitting on my couch super sore as I write this, lol! Before I get to the amazingness that was crossing the Grand Canyon twice, I just want to relay the “boring” stuff first–what I packed, what I ate, what some of the places I visited are called, etc. Maybe it will be useful for someone planning a trip soon.

Hydration Pack

Okay, as far as what I used to stuff everything in, I used my Ultimate Hydration Wink hydration vest.

Canyon ready!

Canyon ready!

This pack is uh-mazing. I wrote about it here. It has a 70 oz reservoir which I refilled several times while I crossed.

I love this pack because it’s got a lot of room for storage and it has storage pockets in front for easy access to stuff you’ll use regularly (cell phone, gels, etc.)

What Was Inside

-Emergency card and ID
-Cash (for lemonade when we reached Phantom Ranch)
-My glasses (in case something happened to my contacts)
-Chapstick
-Hand sanitizer
-Tissue
-Sunglasses
-Jacket (rolled up when not in use and on outside of pack–see pic above)
-Phone (for pictures-there is no service down there, lol)
-Hiking poles (on outside of pack-you’d be fine w/o poles but they sure do help)

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You can see my poles on my pack here in this pic

Food

-a small orange
-two tortillas
-4 cookies
-Starburst
-a pickle (packaged)
-pretzels
-large bag of Beef Jerky
-Salt tabs
-2 gels (never used them)
-20oz Gatorade (this was on the outside of the pack where I rolled up my jacket)

I ate all of my food the first day I crossed, but had a lot left over the second as the second day goes a lot faster.

I mentioned that I refilled my reservoir several times. There are water stops along the Canyon that allows for that. It’s recommend you bring your own filter but I didn’t both times I crossed and was fine.

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You can see from the map on the left and the key on the right that there are water stops along the way.

What “R2R2R” means

Rim to rim to rim is what R2R2R stands for. It means you go from one rim of the Canyon to the other and back again. You can see there are two routes you can take coming from the South Rim–Bright Angel Trail or South Kaibab Trail.

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The first day, we went from South Kaibab Trail to North Kaibab Trail with a pit stop at Ribbon Falls and it took us roughly 11 hours. The second day, we went from North Kaibab up through Bright Angel Trail and it took us around 9 hours.

The first day is “hardest” because going up to the North Rim is brutal. The second day is difficult because going up Bright Angel Trail leaves you exposed to the sun for hours. The whole thing is an awesome sufferfest.

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We did NOT double cross on the same day, lol!

Where We Slept 

There is a nice lodge/motel at the South Rim near the entrance to Bright Angel Trail. We stayed there Saturday night before we started the first day Sunday morning. The rooms were like a regular motel and very comfortable. They had a “cafeteria” type-esque place to eat with different types of food–Mexican, Pasta, Grilled.

At the North Rim, we stayed at a little cabin at the Grand Canyon Lodge. They have a restaurant where you can eat and also a smaller “deli”. We ate at the deli.

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The above picture is a lounge area where you can see the views of the Canyon. There’s also an outside deck:

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I would totally recommend visiting this place if you just want to “see” the Canyon and not actually go inside it, lol. You do have to make reservations if you want to eat in the restaurant though; the deli you can just walk in. You also don’t need to be staying at the lodge if you want to eat.

Okay, that’s enough of the “boring” stuff. I’ll whip up the awesome details/pictures of the actual crossing here in the next couple of days.

If you want a sneak peek of pics, follow my Insta 😀

Thanks for following my journey!! ❤ , helly

 

 

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It’s All About The Climb…

I actually like that Miley song…..

Anyway, last week was a pseudo recovery week from my very first Triathlon–I didn’t do a whole lot of running (two days) but I got in a tough trail run/hike at the end of the week.

Monday I headed to the gym and worked out with a buddy. She had me doing some crazy stuff that left me quite sore, lol! It was fun though, because they were workout drills I normally would never do–squats with weights and other fun things. 

Tuesday had me running an easy 5 miler (8:53/m) with a friend and her pooch.

Wednesday I picked up the pace on a solo run, 4 miles at 8:04/m. I was really happy with this run because my splits were good–8:16, 8:04, 8:05, 7:51. 😀

Thursday consisted of a 20 minute stationary bike ride and core work and I took a complete rest day Friday.

Saturday was a big day.

I have a 4 year old <3

I have a 4 year old ❤

It’s crazy how time flies. When she was born, people would tell me that before I knew it, she’d grow up. Now it’s really happening.

We had a fun family day together and in the evening we had a few of her friends over for play. Her big party is this next weekend so there’ll be more pictures then 🙂

Sunday I met up with my run club for a new trail run. I always jump at the chance to run on a new trail because I love exploring where we live. 

This particular hike was exactly that, a hike. It was about a 40 minute drive from where I live, but we were told it would be worth it.

Oh, boy.

The trail was labeled “expert” but I wasn’t sure what that meant. I’ve done some pretty tough climbs but this had been talked up as being a really, really tough one.

See those towers way up there? Let's climb up to them just for fun!

See those towers way up there? Let’s climb up to them just for fun!

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Yep, that was my Garmin read of that hike.

It was a 9+ miler that was basically UP. At the start, you had a few rolling hills, so you thought you’d be okay. But then around mile 2 and a halfish, the ridiculousness started. I was f bombing left and right at how not fun it was. At this point, the trail turned into concrete and there was no running; it was literally a climb.

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Pit stop to decide if we *really* want to go all the way to the top, lol!

The trail website describes it:

“The climb provides a serene feeling of ridge-line hiking, offering amazing views along the way as you quickly climb 2000 feet to the peak.”

I somehow missed the serenity feeling, lol!

Anway, I huffed and puffed (and swore) my way up all the way to the very top 🙂

Almost to the top. This was after quite a few Holy Fuckballs

Almost to the top. This was after quite a few Holy Fuckballs

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Amazing view of Phoenix

And when we got there, we saw a helipad!! I of course had to take a picture on it! 😀

Helly on a helipad :D

Helly on a helipad 😀

The way back down had to be done carefully. It was so steep there was no way you could run down that without falling. Once it leveled out a bit though, it was easier to pick up speed. Which I did because I wanted to get the hell out of there, lol!!

Shoefie!

Shoefie!

Protruding cactus at the start/end. I wanted to high five it

Protruding cactus at the start/end. I wanted to high five it

I was glad I did the hike though. As with most things in life, it’s good to try everything once (most things anyway 😉 )

–Have you hiked a rough trail before? What about it made it tough?

–Do you swear when you run? Or during your regular day?

 

 

Grouse Grind Mountain Climb! {Recap}

So Saturday, the day after the Night Run Vancouver 10k, I should actually say, the morning after the Night Run Vancouver 10k–we woke up, bright and early, to climb Vancouver’s most famous mountain!


The Grouse Grind® is a 2.9-kilometre trail up the face of Grouse Mountain, commonly referred to as “Mother Nature’s Stairmaster.”

This trail is very challenging. Keep in mind that there is a wide range of mountaintop trails that might better suit the average hiker.


Trail Facts

Length
: 2.9 kilometres (1.8 miles)
Elevation Gain: 853 metres (2,800 feet)
Total Stairs: 2,830
Average Time: On average, it takes up to an hour and a half to complete the hike. For novice hikers, two hours is recommended.
Source

Mother Nature’s Stairmaster. How could you NOT want to do that, right???
As I’d mentioned in my race recap, it was cold in Vancouver (for me) and I purchased a very expensive hoodie as I’d come unprepared to climb up a mountain in what seemed to me freezing temps, lol.
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We started the climb and right away, started going UP. The stairs seriously seemed never ending.
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When we climbed Mt. Humphrey’s, Arizona’s highest peak, there were landings where we’d often rest. Not with Grouse Mountain. There were just stairs going up and up and up. Occasionally, I’d just pull off to the side and let people pass.
The trail of steps are narrow, so they’ve made it a one way trip. People can only go up and then you have to take the Sky Lift to come back down.
This actually made me feel better because it wasn’t far into the climb that I started to ask, Are we there yet?
Up and up and up
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It took us almost exactly an hour and a half! There was this cafe type building at the top of the mountain where one could eat and buy souvenirs. We rested, snacked, and then decided to get back down as quickly as we could.
On the Sky Lift, we had amazing views of what we’d just climbed. It was actually really cool to see as there had been quite a bit of fog on our climb up that we hadn’t really seen any views.
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view
It was a perfect morning hike, tough, but we were glad we were able to cross off Grouse Grind on our list!
I hope everyone has a great weekend!!! Happy October!!! 😀
❤ , helly
–Are you a fan of the stair master?
 
–Have you thought of your Halloween costume yet?