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Saturday, April 27, 2013

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I know you have probably all ready been told these two things but members of our Grand Canyon hiking group lost toenails when doing the downhill portion. A guys in a hiking shoe shop told us all--cut your toenails really, really short. The other thing he told us is harder to explain--when you lace your shoes put the shoe strings around the hooks the opposite way you would normally coming from the bottom of the hook--does that make sense?? You are then exerting more back pressure on your lower leg and ankle. It has helped me tremendously going downhill and when we hiked in Zion last April, none of us lost toenails.

That's interesting that you chose to do the East Mesa Trail. That was our plan, also! Except we were going to hike back out the same way. However, there was still a lot of snow there in March and the road beyond the Ponderosa Ranch was deep mud with a frozen layer underneath, almost got the Jeep stuck. We had to turn around. Of course, the beginning of the trail in the park had ice on it. But by the end of March the trail was clear and we were able to hike from the main canyon. What a beautiful surprise the slot was. Glad you got to do this on your last day. So sorry Linda had some trouble. Makes for a very long return. Take care you two. Enjoy Bryce!!

I'm so sorry that the descent was hurting your legs. I remember that trail almost with tears - and I thank you for brightening my morning with that :) - but I totally understand when the body makes it hard.

Oh well - I hope you enjoy Bryce Canyon. If you don't mind yet more advice (I feel like such a voyuer recently!), I hope you get the chance to do one of the "Star Talks" at Bryce. The formations are wonderful (and Route 12 - Red Rock Canyon as you drive there) are arrestingly beautiful - but I think that the rangers there are aware of "Canyon fatigue." When you are surrounded by technicolor canyons, it eventually overloads the senses.

Anyways, as I rambled, the rangers are aware of this, I think, and so they've also leveraged the dark skies. They give talks and show the stars - even if you're not all that into astronomy, they make it interesting. I was blessed in that I was there during the eclipse, and they had a "star party" the night before, where like 20 guys or so brought their telescopes. I doubt they'll have those, but the rangers will be! Especially if you can find Ranger Shawn Duffy - you'll learn a lot.

Thank you once more for bringing a smile and a joy to my heart with your pictures.

On steep descents we were advised by our chiropodist to wear slightly padded or gel toe covers as worn by ballerina when they go 'en pointe'. It does help.

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