Tapeats Creek / Kanab Creek Loop

Jacob Lake, Arizona

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1 Review
3 out of 5
This eTrail is a detailed description of an adventurous loop through the Grand Canyon backcountry. Here is an excerpt from this eTrail's route description. "Surprise Valley, and the smaller valley and dry lake bed that you crossed earlier in getting to Deer Creek, represent a spectacular geological event. According to Ford, Huntoon, Billingsley, and Breed (see the article “Rock Movement and Mass Wastage in the Grand Canyon” from the book Geology of the Grand Canyon), they are the result of a huge rotational landslide or slump. Visualize a segment of Canyon wall, from the Bright Angel Shale on the bottom to the Esplanade on the top, that is 0.5 to 1.5 miles wide and 2,000 feet thick, extending from the Thunder River on the east to Cranberry Canyon on the west. Suddenly this hunk of wall slips on the shale, breaks loose from its moorings, and rotates, with the bottom portion moving out and away as the top portion falls.

Tapeats Creek / Kanab Creek Loop Professional Review and Guide

"This eTrail is a detailed description of an adventurous loop through the Grand Canyon backcountry. Here is an excerpt from this eTrail's route description. "Surprise Valley, and the smaller valley and dry lake bed that you crossed earlier in getting to Deer Creek, represent a spectacular geological event.

According to Ford, Huntoon, Billingsley, and Breed (see the article “Rock Movement and Mass Wastage in the Grand Canyon” from the book Geology of the Grand Canyon), they are the result of a huge rotational landslide or slump. Visualize a segment of Canyon wall, from the Bright Angel Shale on the bottom to the Esplanade on the top, that is 0.5 to 1.5 miles wide and 2,000 feet thick, extending from the Thunder River on the east to Cranberry Canyon on the west. Suddenly this hunk of wall slips on the shale, breaks loose from its moorings, and rotates, with the bottom portion moving out and away as the top portion falls."

Activity Type: Backpacking, Hiking
Nearby City: Jacob Lake
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Difficult
Duration: 6 days, plus layover days, if any
Season: Best spring and fall
Local Contacts: Grand Canyon National Park
Local Maps: USGS Tapeats Amphitheater, Fishtail Mesa, Jumpup Point, Kanab Point
Driving Directions: Directions to Tapeats Creek / Kanab Creek Loop

Recent Trail Reviews

5/23/2008
0

I always assume that hiking books oversell the possible dangers and difficulties just to make sure overconfident hikers don't hurt themselves. The warning in this guide that this loop is only for experienced Grand Canyon canyoneers should be taken very seriously. We made it down to the esplanade fine and then down to the dry Colorado overlook in Cranberry canyon. Cranberry's the officially unnamed one that's the canyon you can see between Deer Creek Canyon and Fishtail Canyon as you descend from the rim. From Cranberry there's a gully you're supposed to take down to the river. It's close to 1000 feet total, and was much too technical for it to be safe for us, especially given we were out before May 15 to avoid the heat so there were not even rangers yet on the north rim. I could envision having been comfortable with a friend/guide who was experienced in the Canyon and could lead the way, but from the top it looks scarily like a 500 foot drop to the tallus. We turned around and ended up only spending one night out there. If you do go, the dripping spring at the meetup of the two drainages down into the main cranberry canyon is a nice spot. It's over on the eastern wall maybe ~50 yards south of the meeting point. It saved us on our way out, or we wouldn't have had nearly enough water, and we still ran out an hour before exit.



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May 2018