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Off Trail Hiking in the Grand Canyon: Crystal / Phantom Creek Loop

Tue, 2023-11-28

Mike Fugate will speak at the November 28 Mountaineers meeting. He writes: “My first backpacking trip in the Grand Canyon was in 1985.  Before the trip ended, I was hooked on Grand Canyon hiking.  After a few short backpacking trips on established trails, my interests turned to longer loop hikes in the remote backcountry, especially trips starting on the north rim.”

“In October of 2023, 6 of us set out on a 10-day loop hike that began on the north rim near Tiyo Point.  Our route did not follow any established trails.  We bushwhacked through thorn bushes and cacti gardens, rock-hopped along creek beds, and scrambled through cliffs to circumambulate 6 massive geological features, such as Shiva Temple and Tower of Ra.”

Mike has lived in Los Alamos for 27 years.  He worked at LANL for 25 years as a statistician until he retired in 2021.  He now spends his time playing tennis, rafting, hiking, backpacking, climbing 13ers and 14ers, mountain biking, skiing, and volunteering for the Park Service and the USDA.

We welcome all to this Mountaineers’ meeting, on the regular fourth Tuesday of the month. The social hour, with cookies, begins at 6:45 PM and the program at 7:00 PM. The presentation will be streamed at Los Alamos Nature Center; the slides will be live-streamed on Zoom. Registration is required to Zoom and recommended for in-person – we would love to see your smiling face. Registration details are at

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