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Trip Report - September, 1997 - Dripping Springs dayhike, Clear Creek backpack & Toroweap overlook

Well, first of all this is not the hike that I had originally planned to do on this trip which was supposed to be a trip down the South Bass Trail, east along the Tonto and then out on the Boucher. Unfortunately, because of some abnormally heavy monsoon rains caused by hurricane Linda and the El Nino effect off of the coast of Baja California, the road out to the South Bass trailhead was impassable on the day that I was supposed to start my hike and there was no way to get out there. This is frequently the case with this road in the summer because of rain and in the winter because of snow and if you are planning a trip on the South Bass Trail at this time you should always have a backup itinerary. I didn't but I got lucky.

I love the Clear Creek area and this was my first choice for a backup trip. On the day that I was supposed to start the South Bass hike I headed over to the new Backcountry Office at the Maswik Transportation Center with my permit in hand. Clear Creek was available for the three nights that I wanted over there and that was no problem. The only problem was that there was no space available at Bright Angel Campground on the day that I wanted to start my hike and I had hoped to spent one night there before and after Clear Creek. As an alternative to Bright Angel I ended up staying over in Cremation Canyon on the trip to Clear Creek, which made for a very long trek over to Clear Creek on the second day of the trip. Luckily Bright Angel Campground was available for the night that I wanted after Clear Creek. The hike between Cremation and Clear Creek is too long and I do not recommend this for any sane person. Having to hike back to the South Kaibab, descend to the river, regain the Tonto on the north side of the river, tramp over to Clear Creek and then descend to Clear Creek via that horrible trail on the other end is a but much for one day. If you are heading to Clear Creek and cannot get a reservation at Bright Angel Campground then I would suggest spending the first (and/or last) night in the Clear Creek use area and just camp somewhere east of Sumner Wash (the western edge of the use area). An other option would not be going all the way to Clear Creek on the second day but I wanted my three nights at Clear Creek and this was not an option for me.

Hurricanes in Arizona! Who ever heard of such nonsense!

Happy Trails

camera Photo map

Day 1 - Arrival at Grand Canyon
Day 2 - Grand Canyon, South Rim
Day 3 - Day hike along the Hermit and Dripping Springs Trails
Day 4 - South Kaibab trailhead to Cremation Canyon
Day 5 - Cremation Canyon to Clear Creek
Day 6 - Day hike up East Clear Creek
Day 7 - Day hike to Cheyava Falls
Day 8 - Clear Creek to Bright Angel Campground
Day 9 - Bright Angel Campground to Bright Angel trailhead
Day 10 - Grand Canyon, South Rim
Day 11 - Trip to Toroweap
Day 12 - Grand Canyon, South Rim

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