Upcoming Trails Trip

   Kim is going to be doing another Resource Management trip this spring, again sponsored by Grand Canyon outfitters, the National Park Service and GCRG. It will be an 18-day trip, putting in February 23, 1994 (9-day upper, 10-day lower, exchange at Phantom on March 3, take out at Diamond March 12th). He needs 12 boatmen, including a cook.

   Boatmen will receive $100 PER HALF as "reimbursement for transportation costs". The cook will receive an additional fee for the pre-trip nightmares. Here's your chance to give something back to the Canyon, have a lot of fun and have the Canyon to yourselves. The trip also presents a unique opportunity to have some say in the decision making process about resource management. Sign up!


Last Fall’s Trails Trip

   Here’s what the trails trip was all about... Long hours and low pay, but you’ll be hungry, and in danger..... No, just kidding, we weren’t ever hungry.

   The trip that left Lees Ferry was large and fluffy. 9 boats, 16 people, and quite a few willow and mesquite trees. Before it was over, we would be down to 11 people and no trees.

   The boats, gear, food cost, and subsistence pay for the cook, were donated by the outfitters. In addition to the logistical support from the outfitters, Kim Crumbo, Bill Gloeckler, Laurie Lee Staveley, Garrett Schniewind, Drifter Smith, and the warehouse staffs of AzRA, Can Ex, and ARR, made this trip happen. They worked out logistics, planned the menu, and pulled the trip together.

   We stopped at Badger to do a trash pick-up, worked at South, laid over at Nankoweap to plant trees at Little Nankoweap and do trail work. Today I’m sitting watching it snow, but six weeks ago I was enjoying the sunshine, the Canyon, Macy’s coffee, and the river at Espejo. We stayed at Espejo for three nights, so the crew could work on the trail between Tanner and the Beamer Cabin.

   The crew revegetated multiple trailing at Elves. We camped at 120 Mile, revegetating some of the trailing between the camps, and the next day the trail crew performed a complete camp-rebuilding effort at Galloway. We spent three glorious days at the mouth of Tapeats to work on that trail. At Poncho’s, we planted the rest of the trees, and then we blazed to Whitmore, where we laid over again. The trail crew did extensive work on the Whitmore Trail to determine the amount of time and manpower needed to bring the trail up to stock standards. In all, the crew conducted maintenance on 38,700 linear feet of existing trail, applied revegetation techniques to 1,900 linear feet of multiple trailing, and blocked off 6,000 linear feet of multiple trailing.

   There were 30 mile days on the oars, and water that was almost exclusively low. We had beautiful, exhilarating runs in rapids, Horn Creek at the petrifying stage, Upset at yahoo level, the right run at Hance, high-enough-to-be-fearsome at Lava. The trip involved a great deal of hard work. Because of the small number of people, we all had to do more of the camp chores, on top of the trail work. But I have never done a trip with people who complained so little, if at all. We laughed around the campfire, and thanks to Paul, Don, and Bill, had live music virtually every night. The food, if I do say so myself, was pretty damned good. The weather was perfect, warm and sunny. Halloween at Cremation was hysterical; we decorated camp, got dressed up, ate blue corn- black bean tamales, and had ourselves a small celebration under a full moon.

   But the best part was how it felt. Giving something back, taking some amount of responsibility for ameliorating the degradation caused, inevitably, by human activity in the Canyon. That incredible feeling you get when you’re exhausted from working your tail off just because it’s the right thing to do.

   It was quiet..... very few other trips, no motors; it was the most amazing feeling. On the bottom half of the trip, most of us were on boats by ourselves, and so we rowed downstream without any distraction, except what we created ourselves. On a boat, alone, in the Grand Canyon.

   It was sad......we lost crew at Tanner and at Whitmore because of family emergencies.

   It was tiring.....from Tapeats to 165 Mile on low water. 18 days (plus packing and load-out) with no days off. Rowing all day. Moving huge rocks, huge logs, and large amounts of dirt. Not real glamorous; trail work. As the cook, I stayed behind while the others did trail work; cleaning, cooking, and nursing tomatoes. I wasn’t there on the trails, but it was obvious at the end of each day that the crew was tired but gratified, and hungry.

   This trip had a tremendous impact on my head. It wasn’t your normal Grand Canyon river trip. I talked politics with Kim Crumbo, rowed rapids with Dave Desrosiers, discussed archeology with Helen Fairley, and worked with new people from other companies. It was the best trip I’ve ever done. Sorry guys, I know I promised not to tell, but they made me.

Nancy Nelson