Day 5

April 24, 2014

Continue Along the Ranger Trail to its Terminus at Kanab Creek


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Today's route stats: 

    Distance: 8.8 miles

    Elevation Gain:  600 feet

    Elevation Loss:  1000 feet

Our goal for today was to continue hiking northward on the Ranger Trail to its terminus in Kanab Creek.  Then, hike up Kanab until we find water.  Kanab Creek usually has intermittent water, but you never know where for sure.  We broke camp a little before 8:00. 

Early Morning on the Esplanade. Campsite on the Esplanade. Hiking North on the Ranger Trail.


The hiking along the Ranger Trail was easy and beautiful.  We had wonderful weather, although it was getting warmer.  We reached the turnoff to the Lawson Trail in about an hour, and a half hour later we crossed the upper section of Lawson Canyon.   From now on it would be new terrain for all of us except Rob. 

The next major side canyon we came to is called Dinner Pockets Canyon.  We dropped our packs and headed down  to explore Dinner Pockets Canyon.  I understand that the canyon does go, but we turned around before we got to Kanab Creek.  I still cannot figure out why it is called Dinner Pockets.  But I do like the name.

It was definitely warming up, actually getting pretty hot in the sun.  A short while after we got back on the trail, we stopped in the shade of some large Supai rocks. 


Approaching Dinner Pockets Canyon. Hiking Down Dinner Pockets Canyon. Taking a Break in the Shade.

Pools at Our Campsite in Kanab Creek (Photo by Rob "WildVagabond" Jones).




The rest of the day was uneventful, except for the huge hassle of getting around the head of Big Cove Canyon, the next major drainage we encountered.  The trail just disappeared, or rather, it split into several paths, then disappeared.  The terrain was convoluted and difficult to navigate through.  We ended up splitting up into two or three groups, each of us thinking we were either on the trail, or an easy to travel route.  I ended up hiking farther up canyon than necessary.  And it was getting pretty hot, so none of us were having any fun. 

We re-grouped on the far side of the web of drainages.  We now had only a little over a mile to go to get to Kanab Creek.  The trail actually drops down into Kanab earlier than shown on the map. 

To our disappointment, Kanab Creek was bone dry.  We began hiking up Kanab, hoping to find water.  We soon found some wet sand, then a few very stagnant pools, and finally a very large pool in the creek bed, probably 15 feet wide and several hundred feet long.  And several feet deep in places.  We found some nice rock ledges on creek right and we set up camp. 

Around dinner time, we got out the maps and began looking at what our day would be like tomorrow.  Yikes!  We had a very long way to go to get back to our cars.  We should have planned a little better.  But the water situation left us with few options.  C'est la vie. 


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