Labor day was a great excuse to get in our first trial hike. Michelle and I are planning to hike/run the Grand canyon from rim to river to rim in one day at the end of September.
I chose a 5-mile loop in Encinitas because I was familiar with it and it had some great inclines to mimic the Grand Canyon. Since recovering from thyroid disease that kicked my butt, I'm not as confident of what my body is capable of.
This hike was a great place to test it out. The bottom of the Grand canyon is not the place to figure out that you have gone beyond what you can handle. Because the first part of the hike is spent easily descending, many people venture too far before realizing it is at least twice as hard to hike back out. the official Grand canyon website is littered with warnings about venturing too far.
The Encinitas hike couldn't have gone any better. It was a lovely 82 degrees at noon, similar to the 90 we will encounter in the interior of the canyon. Michelle was a perfect hiking buddy holding a swift pace and keeping the conversation entertaining. And my new Hoka One One running shoes made the day. They are made for long distance running with 30% extra cushioning in the soles. And I felt every bit of it. It felt like I was hiking on spring loaded marshmallows. I never even felt the trail. The last time I hiked the Grand Canyon I wore a twenty pound pair of hiking boots with a steel rod running through the sole. By the time I reached the top my feet had passed through hellishly painful to just plain numb. I know this time my feet might be sore but the will be in much better shape because of the new shoes.