May 2, 2012
Another good day in the books! Although it started off with some aches and pains in my lower back, probably from paddling so much yesterday, I spend some time stretching and doing a few yoga positions and took some Advil and it quickly got better.
We drifted a few miles down the river after breakfast and were the first ones to arrive at Deer Creek Falls (Mile 136). Like the the Little Colorado River we have the place to ourselves temporarily until other river parties arrive at this popular stop (by the time we leave there would be 18-boats here).
We all hike up to the Patio, which is one of the most beautiful areas I've ever seen. It's a slot canyon hundreds of feet above the river that leads back into a gorge with Deer Creek flowing all the while in the depths on its way to eventually go over the waterfall. There are dozens of mini-waterfalls along the way and it eventually opens up into a big area with lots of shade kind of like a natural patio.
From here, Bob, Athena, Robert, Andy and I continue on the trail on a mission to get to the "source" of Deer Creek and the famous Throne Room. The source is a powerful waterfall coming straight out of the side of a canyon wall high above the trail, which goes directly behind the waterfall and into a room where people have literally made "thrones" out of large flat pieces of rock. We stop and refill our water bottles directly from the source. It's the best tasting water of the entire trip! We then all stop, pick out a throne and eat our packed lunches. Bob reads his book, the Game of Thones, while sitting in one of the largest thrones for about a half hour.
When it's time to hike back to the Patio I decide I'm going to trail run, but this time film it on the GoPro mounted on my helmet that I brought up from the boat in my backpack. I'm only wearing my Teva Sandals so I have to be extra careful. I think to myself that Jenny will enjoy seeing this video. I really wish she were here to run some of these trails! I finish the run in just under 11 minutes. It takes an average river rafting passenger about 45 minutes to hike what I've just ran. I cool off by laying down in the creek at the Patio.
Trail run back to the Patio
I spend most of my time taking photographs of the area and I can't wait to get back to a computer to view them. The problem with these GoPro cameras is you can't review your video or pictures. I thought that the SD card would work in my other cameras from the GoPro, but they aren't compatible. Everyone wishes we could review footage instantly, but I kind of like it because it's like the old days of film where you just don't know until you get to the darkroom. I miss those days sometimes.
We are camping now at a place call the "Dorris" campsite and we got here early so everyone is super chill and relaxed. I'm not sure why it's called Dorris, but I get the impression from Butch and Bob that it's something dirty. Oh well, the weather is pleasant and I'm excited about an all day hike we're planning for tomorrow at Kanab Creek.