Back in April, I watched some friends pull off a big run in the Grand Canyon. I wasn’t in good enough shape, so I didn’t commit to doing the whole thing with them. I told myself I’d be back in Oct to knock out the entire route myself. I mean, if they could do it, why couldn’t I?
Ryan had never laid eyes on the Big Ditch. He does everything big, so simply sightseeing from the Visitor’s Center wasn’t exactly his cup of tea: his first trip needed to pack a punch.
The alarm went off at 0200, and we dropped into the canyon via the Bright Angel trailhead at 0300 under the crisp glow of LED headlamps. We ran down…across…and trudged up the north side of the canyon in about 7.5 hours; which was just over 24 miles. We pounded some snacks (and froze our asses off) before heading back the way we came. 8.5 hours later, we limped our exhausted bodies outta the canyon back on the South Rim. Holy shit. 16 hours….48.6 miles (according to Ryan’s GPS watch). The biggest, longest, and most challenging day either of us had ever had in our lives.
I could go on and on about setting goals and challenging yourself and all that shit, but I’ll just say this: pulling something off that truly intimidated you is so damn empowering. Is it crazy? Sure. But it’s even crazier to not believe in yourself….or worse yet: not even try.