Use instep crampons in winter. They offered me food and I couldn’t resist their dried mangos. Very fit runners and backpackers have died on the Tonto Trail. One guy talked to me for a few minutes and mentioned he had not seen anyone continue on today. I continued on. 100-mile race fitness can teach you what to do. It weaves in and out of all the side canyons, attempting to stay up on the Tonto Platform about 500-1000 feet above the Colorado River. The Tonto National Forest recently released a burn severity map of the Bush Fire. But then I came into a rugged canyon and it slowed me back down. But still, every few minutes, I would have to stop. Only three people have done the distance on both sides of the river: Robert Packard in segments; Andrew Holycross as a thru hike on one side and in segments on the other; and Robert Benson as a thru hike on both sides. Running into a side canyon was always hotter because the sun was in my face and the breeze at my back. There were many campers down there and they noticed me running and pointed up to me. They knew exactly what I was attempting and peppered me with questions. After slow going for awhile, I continued cross-country back to the road. These sections are out close to the Colorado River as it is going around to the next side canyon. Cliffs could be seen glowing in the sunshine. Feeling better I ran on and thought about minimalist runners trying to run down here, bonding with the ancients. The climb was hot and tough. Dawn arrived as I approached the massive Grapevine Canyon, the longest side canyon that I would have to get around. On the way to Hermit Creek, the trail extends very close to the Colorado River gorge, very exposed in places. I felt a very sharp pain in the ball of my foot that felt like I had been stabbed. As I approached, I noticed there was a guy sitting there. Some backpackers I passed shortly arrived too and congratulated me. Thank you for sharing your adventures with us. I suspect Scott Jurek and Joe Grant covered this segment a couple hours faster in 2010, I’ll try to find out. I hate going through that place because of the rugged climbs and thoughts of the Boston Marathon runner who died here. She had seen R2R2R runners before, but never a through-runner on the remote Tonto Trail. However, there is a chance that by toughening up your feet in training you *might* not have had the blister issues you had… Who can say? They helped me find the right trail but then stopped me to try and figure out what I was doing and where I was going. I filled up and treated the water with iodine and was on my way again. However, rangers are allowed to make special accommodations for thru-hikers. We started from Grandview and made our way 28 miles westward toward the Tip Off and finished on South Kaibab, still managing to do 3900ft of elevation change each â¦ Conditions worked out, so I made plans to run the length of the Tonto Trail from South Bass to Hance Rapids, a distance of more than 87 miles in the canyon. Hiking the PCT has been a long-gestating goal. My race calendar pales compared to yours, but we at least have that one in common. To avoid doing any out-and-backs, I decided to start my run where the South Bass Trail (coming down from the rim) intersects with the Tonto Trail. I crossed Serpentine canyon (mile 3.9) at 6:35 a.m. Tonto Trail; Trail summary. I started to have terrible blister problems and decided to stop for awhile to work on my feet, put on sunscreen, and put away my lights. He had given another guy a ride out here in the morning and I guess I could have hooked up with him too via the backcountry office. Hiked the AT in 2017, check out the journal! But as I looked closer, I discovered the noise was coming from frogs. It mostly worked, but it sure would have been nice to have a sleeping bag. The afternoon temperatures were in the 70s. I discovered that I had more food than I thought, but I only had a few S-caps left, not enough to face another hot afternoon down here. I crossed Sapphire Canyon (mile 17.8) at noon. I was surprised to see that there were little weeds growing right on the trail, sometimes making it indistinct from the surrounding terrain. I knew that I could be mistaken (I was) because I didn’t take the time for a careful inventory, but I decided to cut back my intake for the night. “Where’s your sleeping bag?” I explained that I would be running through the night. A permit is also required to spend a night below the rim, which is typically difficult to obtain. Stash water on way in for use on way out. Highly recommend this trail. I’m usually hiking in the canyon about once every week…maybe one of these days I’ll see you there! This was the 6th trail on the South Rim that I have used to go down into the canyon. It wasn’t quite a 50K and I had taken 10:35. I’ve backpacked almost all of the south side of the Canyon, done a R2R2R dayhike, and run one marathon…. I couldn’t get it out of the shoe but with some effort broke it off and hoped that it didn’t leave a point deep in my foot. Hi Davy! I arrived at the Grand Canyon on Wednesday afternoon and went to the Backcountry office to get my permit. Two 60 something retirees searching for adventure. The self-support with a pack makes the entire run that much tougher. I was ready to explore a little before dinner, so I ran three miles out and back on section of the Tonto, west of my starting point, where I wouldn’t be running tomorrow. Super Connector by HAZ_Hikebot. I had a feeling of accomplishment come over me, knowing that on my own power, I had run all the way here to see this. In past years, I’ve had difficulty figuring out where the trail continues on the other side of the creek, but this time I knew what to expect. I believe an important part of being able to deal with the mental side of hiking is embracing not just the goal, but the process. After a few miles, I heard buzzing that got louder and louder — helicopters. Running through the forest was so peaceful and amazing. and I’m thinking about running the Tonto. But I’ve had a dream to run the length of the Grand Canyon rather than across it. I reached Boucher (pronounced Bu-shay) (mile 30.1) at 3:50 p.m. Both Horton Creek and Tonto Creek have trout. It could be done in October and November but many of the springs and creeks are dry that time of year which would require hauling heavy water for long distances. Some couldn’t believe I was passing them after I had run all those miles. I surprised him and asked if he might have some extra water. My climb continued. Congrats on a courageous run. I looked up and was able to pick out the area on the rim where I peered down on this canyon yesterday afternoon. She quickly understood that I had good experience in the Canyon. How lucky is that? I would run from Grand Canyon Village to South Bass Trailhead (20 miles) and then descend down to the Tonto Trail and camp for the first night. My pack felt comfortable, less than ten pounds loaded with: Instant Breakfast, Heed, Reeses, Jelly Bellies, Beef Jerky, Five Hot Pockets, Hammer Gel, and all my other gear. The past few days had been very windy. During the summer of 2020, the Bush Fire burned 193,455 acres and forced a closure of the Arizona National Scenic Trail that will likely last until Spring of 2021. There was water flowing down Boucher Creek. All this takes time and you just can’t do it very fast. I’m guessing I needed to go down the creek some more to find the continuing trail. I felt pretty rotten but continued on. I asked them if I was going the right way. My pace was slow. As I descended into Hermit, the trail goes above the campsite area. incredible — truly another dimension to running the GC (other than rim to rim) — i’ll bet you’ve inspired many of us to add something similar to our bucket lists. I ran the Tonto Trail for 77 miles in the Grand Canyon in 27:56. It was an amazing experience and I am so very thankful for being able to experience this dream run. When I am out alone, I tend to worry. I always underestimate the difficulty of running fast on this trail. You have to stop, study the surroundings, back up, and carefully find the trail again. During this 87-mile stretch I estimate the Tonto Trail involves climbs of about 10,000 feet. Location: South Rim Trails. I reached Grapevine Creek (mile 71.1) at 7:26 a.m. A group of backpackers were starting to break their camp and they all came out to greet me with excitement. Tonto and BrewHa Camino de Santiago . I enjoyed your report and photos. My feet were it bad shape, but they did much better going uphill than down. I cooked up some more soup and felt much better. The nearly full moon was out. It was pretty nasty, had been ripped by rodents, but I decided to take it with me. I decided to make a try and pulled out my phone. So in my twisted logic, I concluded, Why not just run it in about five hours. Grand Canyon National Park. MyOwnFrontier 67,201 views. There was absolutely no one else in South Bass Canyon. Thankfully there was a breeze. At 8:30 a.m., I was off, excited to start what would turn out to be a 110-mile running adventure. After dropping out for my senior fall semester of school at UNH. I needed to start climbing to avoid the heat. I knew what direction the next waypoint was, but couldn’t find a trail heading in that direction. Sounds like you had fun. Jim R wrote a review Apr 2018. Thru-hike: 1. Ultrarunning History Podcast and Stories - ultrarunninghistory.com. Grand Canyon Conservancy is the official nonprofit partner of The trek along the Tonto Trail between the Grandview and South Kaibab Trails offers experienced backpackers an excellent introduction to the magic of the Grand Canyon, with magnificent sweeping views, quiet desert streams, and a chance for solitude in a most wild and beautiful place. I estimate that along that way I climbed at least 13,000 feet. 2012-09-23: chumley: 6.31 mi 1,628 ft | load nearby guides. The Tonto Trail is the longest continuous stretch of trail in the Grand Canyon. I’m the guy you met on your way up Grandview (with my son). Image via Peretz Partensky. When I add up all the miles, I ran 110 miles over the two days at the canyon. What is the trail like? Walked the El Camino in Spain in 38 days. The South Kaibab-Tonto Trail-Bright Angel Trail loop does not go to the Colorado River, but is a fantastic day hike that has a little bit of everything: huge views, views of Phantom Ranch and the Colorado River, solitude on the Tonto Trail, and shade and water at Indian Garden. I was kicking myself for not asking you where you’d started, but would never have guessed South Bass! Short-cuts are always slower. This section of the trail receives traffic just about every day so it was much easier to follow. I thought I only had about 1200 calories left. For the first 30 miles, I would be running through the “Gems” of the Grand Canyon. I stopped for about 10 minutes to talk to her. Camp along East Horseshoe M esa Trail before connecting to the Tonto Trail. Along the way there are bail-out points to climb out of the canyon. As I unpacked my things, I discovered with shock, that I had dropped my bivy bag somewhere on the trail coming down. I was also interested in establishing a fastest known time for this stretch. 3. Not being critical, but I think doing some minimalist running in training really helps to toughen up your feet and lower leg muscles. Finally I got past all that activity and then only heard a dull buzzing behind me. But once I ran the Tonto Trail in shorts and came away with bloody scratched legs and splinters to pick out for the next several days. Hikers seldom follow the entire Tonto Trail, normally using it to connect with rim-to-river routes. It’s nice when people understand and don’t give you those blank looks wondering if you are a crazy person. Hiking along the Tonto Trail under these conditions was quite magical. Day hikers from the rim above started to appear. One thing I wished I would have had was a safety pin to lance blisters. To make things hard, it constantly changes back and forth between smooth and rugged. Begin at the Bright Angel Trailhead in Grand Canyon Village. 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