After spending yesterday hiking the North Rim of the Grand Canyon following my departure from the home of the Six clan, some of the nicest people you'll ever meet, I covered five miles of assorted canyon rim trails and discovered that at 8,000 feet of elevation on average, those trails are a bit more of a workout than those back in. WV. The canyon is definitely something else, and the north side, being so remote, had relatively few other visitors; a lot of the time I was the only one in sight. That was extra nice, having some of those remote overlooks all to myself.
Leaving the canyon, the road east of Jacob Lake is nothing short of amazing. When you come out of the mountains, suddenly a massive plain unfolds below you with one tiny road across it that stretches for miles in the shadow of an imposing Mesa to the north. I ran the northern Arizona highway for hours at eighty to eighty-five miles an hour; any slower and I'd get passed byeveryone else. The plan was to camp out at dark, but dark found me on the reservation, not BLM land, and there was nowhere to pull off and set up. I finally decided on a motel in Kayenta, but the only one that still had rooms left was charging $188.00 plus tax, so I headed back out to find a campsite somewhere, even if I had to get creative. After a little looking, I found their small airport, consisting of a runway, two medevac turboprops, a fuel tank and a couple of small sheds. I parked my rental jeep in next to the fuel truck and maintainence truck, grabbed my pack and sleeping bag, and moved a couple hundred yards back into the sagebrush, where I slept soundly until the sun broke the horizon and the world's largest rabbit hopped through my campsite. So now I'm back on the road again, heading up towards Four Corners and Shiprock, NM, although I expect to finish the day at or near Tucson, AZ and the Pima Air Museum.
Life's great. Gotta go. More later if I can find wifi.