the best trail ever!!!!!!!!!!!!
a few tips:
1. wear layers! but don't wear too many. wear layers that can fold easily
2. each hiker should have their own backpack
3. bring 4L water per person!
4. really good hiking shoes
5. wear light but form-fitting attire. no baggy pants. the mud can weigh on the pants
6. pack fruit, nuts, BANANAS, hat, high energy bars, eat small frequent snacks. don't overload on a huge meal or you'll vomit.
7. please please please use walking sticks! the terrain is very icy with lots of mule poop. you don't want to fall on the poop. then, it gets really muddy with mule poop. you don't want to get stuck in mudpoop. then it gets real steep! you don't want to roll in mulepoop and frothy pee!
the hike down is faster. took us 2 hours to hike down. the hike up takes 4 hours. my husband and i did this trail the first time ever, and the caliber of difficulty at its highest. we are athletic but i consider myself out of shape (after the holidays!). we managed with the altitude and the rigorous terrain changes. but we made it 1 mile past skeleton point (BAD IDEA!). when they say, "don't go past skeleton point for a day hike" .. listen to it!! we were dumb because we thought we could see greater views as we near each bend. but trust me.. the grand canyon is GRAND and we're that small... all the views that you see are going to look the same as you descent. so please, if you're going to do a day hike... stop at skeleton point, and go back up. b/c you'll waste your energy on ascending back up (and that last mile after skeleton point is STEEP!!) listen to the advice!!!
definitely going back to do the other hikes and to finally make it down to the colorado river!