This is the second day of the Grand Canyon trip my wife and I took with my parents and my sister's family at the end of March. The previous day we had just hiked down the South Kaibab trail. A total of 7 miles and 4,780 feet in elevation. For day 2 Kiri and I had challenged ourselves to see if we could hike to the North rim and back. We were a little nervous since the North Kaibab trail is 14 miles one way! And a elevation change of 5,761 feet! That fact, plus the numerous signs on the trails warning people of the dangers of performing said hike didn't give us a warm fuzzy.
Our motivation? When I was a kid we had hiked down the canyon and the next day my dad had hiked up to the north rim and back. So we knew it was possible. The question was, were we as tough as my dad? That's what we were going to find out! (Let it be said that if you're not as tough as your dad it usually involves a chopper flight out of the canyon. So don't try this at home kids. Hike at your own risk and at your own level.)
Our intention was to leave early! Like 5am early. Unfortunately we had paid for a breakfast and dinner a year in advance. We assumed making it back for dinner was out of the question. So rather then lose out on both meals we'd decided to stick around for the 7am breakfast. Never hike on a empty stomach. Here we are waiting for the doors to open at the Phantom Ranch cantina.
PDF giving additional information on where the water comes from.
Those professors at the university probably regret giving me that geology degree now. Suckers!