[Day 3 | 17 January 2017]
If River Day 2 is your first taste of big fast water, River Day 3 is almost the opposite. In the 11.7 miles we covered, we only hit one rapid– Thirty-Six Mile Rapid, a class 4.
Despite the calm water, we considered River Day 3 a milestone. It was the morning of the third day during GC2015 that Evan broke his ankle hiking the Silver Grotto and had to be helicopter evac-ed from the canyon. Once we passed Fence Fault Camp, the evac beach, there was lots of celebrating and teasing, “Wow, this is the furthest you’ve made it through the canyon! Congrats!!” He was a good sport about it.
The big attraction of River Day 3 is Redwall Cavern.
This place is absolutely huge. And cold. Very, very cold.
You can see the entrance to the cavern as soon as you round the bend upriver. Photos of boats ahead of us on the river look to tiny compared to the large opening of the cavern. It’s a fun place to run around, play some music, or climb up the canvern walls– and you must take a stroll all the way to the back to truly appreciate the size.
The high water of 1957 filled this cavern when the Colorado River was flowing over 120,000 cfs [a note from RiverMaps Guide to the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon by Tom Martin and Duwain Whitis].
We had lunch at Redwall Cavern, Nick and I raced each other up and down the shore to warm up, and Jillian beautifully played her guitar for everyone to enjoy.
I rowed a lot today. It was very tiring. When we got to camp, I just felt weak and tired. Probably from the blood sugar roller coaster I had been experiencing since rig day, and overall, getting used to the nonstop workload of a trip through the Grand Canyon. The level of tiredness in my body felt comparable to the way I feel after a long run. When I shared that comparison with someone, I was looked at like I was an idiot. But Nick got it. We compare a lot of what we do and the way our bodies feel to running. It’s an easy comparison since we are so in tune with our bodies.
“It felt really cold today. Especially at lunch since there was no sun.”
– AK’s River Journal
River Miles: 11.7 miles
Camp: Buck Farm [mile 41.2]
Thirty-Six Mile [class 4]
Water Flow: 11,000 – 16,000 cfs
Temperature: 37 – 58 deg F
Precipitation: 0.00 in
Wind: 2 – 5 mph, no gusts
Weather Event: N/A