Took my wife and son to Phantom Ranch for Christmas dinner. What an awesome spread. We spent three nights at Bright Angel campground lounging around and playing with my 18 month old son, Adam. It was his first overnight trip into the backcountry. Planned to take two days climbing out but the weather took a turn for the worst. Instead of staying one more night at Indian Gardens we pushed on to the top. We got within a mile of the south rim before the snow started.Grand Canyon pics and a passing mule train video
We saw very few people on the Bright Angel, one small mule group (6-8 animals I think), a few hikers, and one trail work party, at the end of our 5 day trip in early December in the canyon. The trail was pretty torn up by the mules in places, particluarly near Indian Garden, but they were working on cleaning it up from a hard season of use and many sections were nicely maintained National Park quality trails. Mid-week two-day climb out from Phantom Ranch with one night at Indian Garden, where we were the only group in camp. Weather was perfect.
Awesome one-day run from the South Rim to the North Rim (via Bright Angel and N Kaibob) and back (via N and S Kaibob). Next time I'll descend the S Kaibob and ascend the Bright Angel as the S Kaibob is a grueling steep nasty climb after a full day out. In total (not counting the 3 mile walk back to Mather Campground (no shuttle service after 7:30pm)) was 46 miles, 11,400' of gain, 17 hours.
What would be a beautiful hike ended up being a trod between puddles of mule piss and shit. Avery cool day though, snow and hail on the rim to lightning and rain at the lookout.