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Saturday, September 13, 2014

#34 - The Granaries at Nankoweap - Marble Canyon

Arizona's "America the Beautiful" Quarter - The Granaries at Nankoweap

There are many side canyons and deltas that make up - and lead to - the Grand Canyon. Marble Canyon represented the beginning of our river adventure, beginning at Lee's Ferry (River Mile 0) and transitioning to the Grand Canyon at RM62. It is a beautiful area, where the Colorado river ran clear, where we experienced our only rain of the monsoon season, and where we were able to get ashore on a few occasions for fun and some cool hikes.

Marble Canyon (RM32 South Canyon)
We stopped at South Canyon for a short hike to see Indian artifacts that remain in the area. Pottery shards and various drawings were seen here and it made for an interesting stop.


Further downstream, we came upon Redwall Cavern, with its sandy beach. This large, cavernous area was a perfect place to explore, throw a frisbee, and gaze at this mass of red rock which made up the cavern walls and ceiling. The scale of this place was huge!

It was at our last stop, Nankoweap, and our campground for the night, that I enjoyed most this day. The whole area was beautiful. Many cactus and colors - and the hike to the granaries made for spectacular views.

Getting this hike started!

The granaries were used by the ancient Anasazi Indians to store seed and protect them from vermin and rot.

The four granaries in center of photo

2010 Arizona "America the Beautiful" quarter
It was a great day. We had our only showers this day, and a booming thunderstorm at night. We started the night under the stars, when thunder rumbled through the canyon, echoing off the walls. It was the one time we used the tent - just until the storm passed.

Our campground below
The hiking was great. The Canyon, the exploration, the river, the wildlife, the rumbling thunder. But it would not have been half as fun without these people. This was just day 2 and we were having a blast!

Keep hiking, friends!

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