Had a chance yesterday to do a little polishing on some Labyrinth of Flame scenes, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Since my head's still full of desert scenery, I thought today I'd show off pics of another hidden desert treasure: Deer Creek in the Grand Canyon. Like Elves Chasm, Deer Creek is a side canyon deep within the Grand that's possible to visit by a long backpack trip, but far easier to reach from the river. The upper reaches of Deer Creek are broad, but near the Colorado River it narrows into a deep, sculpted slot that ends in a massive waterfall.
|To reach Deer Creek from the Colorado River, you must take a trail that climbs high above the waterfall's pour-off (and gives you a great view down the Grand Canyon's inner gorge)
|Looking into the slot from above
|Climbing down into the slot (we brought a handline)
|The start of the slot is fairly broad
|As the slot narrows, travel gets a bit more tricky (that water is deep and COLD)
|The slot gets more exciting the further you go
|The walls in the narrows are beautiful
|At the base of the final waterfall. You can rappel this, but you need a far longer rope than we had with us; we descended the slot to where we could hear the fall, then turned around and climbed back out and down.
The Man Who Walked Through Time, in which he tells the story of walking the length of the Grand Canyon back when people weren't sure a hiking route through the depths was possible. Reading Fletcher is like reading a more modern John Muir; his writing is contemplative, focused as much on his spiritual journey as his physical one, while conveying with vivid accuracy the beauty and grandeur of the wilderness he travels. In addition to his Grand Canyon adventure, I highly recommend his earlier novel The Thousand Mile Summer, which chronicles his trip walking the length of California. Both books are must-reads for anyone who loves the wilderness.