My employer needed someone to fly down to Phoenix, AZ for some work. I volunteered so I could combine it into a chance to head over to the Grand Canyon to see Carmen. I flew down from Portland to Phoenix in the early morning on Friday. It was a warm 101 in Phoenix and I really was not impressed with the city. Just way to brown, hot, and busy for a small town Northwest guy.

After finishing up my work I drove up to the Grand Canyon and Carmen’s house. It was really great to hang out and spend some time with her. She had just picked up her new puppy Artemis and it was fun to see a cute puppy again since mine is now 75lbs.

Saturday Carmen and I headed down into the Canyon for a hike to Horseshoe Mesa. It was quite the trip. Hot. Steep. and Rocky. Just what you think hiking in the Grand Canyon would be. We walked to the Horseshoe Mesa old mining area and then all the way to the end of the Mesa. We had a nice lunch and cooled down a bit … a bit it was still hot hot after all. There was thunder clouds all day and we were afraid, and kind of hopeful really, that we were going to get soaked with a Arizona thunderstorm. It started to drizzle during our lunch so we decided to head up the canyon. Well, we got NO rain but we did have a “nice” walk back.

Turns out, though, my 10 year old boots couldn’t handle the canyon. My boot sole started coming off and by a bit up the mountain was completely about to come off. Not wanting to go barefoot up the canyon wall Carmen and I managed to fashion a fix out of an eyeglasses string. We made it up in really good time even though my legs were dying by the top. Once we made it to the tourists with flip flops and white pants we knew we were right at the top!

The next day I had sore calves and some HUGE blisters but a good set of achievement. Carmen and I took a drive out to the end of the Park and the tower out there. Then we took a little walk to a semi-secret point that is one of Carmen’s favorites. Check out our picture gallery for my pictures from the trip. You can also check out my flickr page for all the pictures I took and if you want to download a full size picture for a print.

I left the Grand Canyon around 1:30PM and survived the drive back to Phoenix and flight back to PDX airport. It was SO GOOD to be back home among the green grass, trees, and livable temperatures.

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