(This was also the day we first heard from Judith about Hermann being in ICU)
We woke up super early, and so decided to go watch the sunrise at 5:30 am. It took us a while to find a good spot, but we did finally settle on a spot at the top of the Bright Angel Trail. It was beautiful to see the canyon slowly light up as the sun rose higher, with the bottom still in dusky gray and the red and sandy cliffs illuminated in layers by the warm light under a clear blue sky.
Then we took the bus along the rim trail out to Monument Creek Vista, and then walked back along the trail to the other points–the Abyss, Mojave Point, Hopi Point, Powell Point with the Orphan mine, a cleaned-up uranium mine and then past Maricopi point back to the Grand Canyon village. We then had lunch at the food court and rested up for a little before we headed out again, and hiked in the other direction along the rim until we came to the geology “museum” stop. We’d already seen that, but we caught the bus there to go out to the Eastern end of the rim trail, to the South Kaybab trailhead. We went down to a spot about 1.5 miles down to the so-called “Ooh-Aah Point” and back up, and that was truly a fantastic hike. I’m very proud of our hiking today; it probably added up to about 10 miles total, and we saw some amazing sights; I also coped with my fears of being right on the edge pretty well. The rim trail sometimes goes very close to sheer drop-offs, as did the South Kaybab trail, and although I had to slow down sometime or take a deep breath, I made it work. Mark took some beautiful photos all along, and we really had a great hiking day. We wrapped it up with a light dinner at the Arizona Room, which is part of our hotel, and actually pretty nice and not as overpriced as some places (given that it has the view of the Canyon to boast of), and went to bed rather early.