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February 1934Volume 8, Number 11

Regarding the Nankoweap Trail

AN an article entitled "On Canyon Trails" in an earlier issue of Grand Canyon Nature Notes (Vol. 8, No. 5), the writer gave brief reference to the building of the hazardous Nankoweap trail in the extreme northeastern part of Grand Canyon. Since publishing this article attention of the writer has been called to an interesting account by Dr C.D. Walcott1 himself, of the development of this trail. The article is here quoted in detail. (It should be noted that the date as given in the previous article of Nature Notes was incorrect.)

1. Walcott, Charles D., "Pre-Carboniferous Strata in the Grand Cañon of the Colorado, Arizona, Amer. Jour. Sci,, Vol. 26, p. 437.

"During the month of November, 1882, the Director of the Survey had constructed, under his immediate supervision, a horse trail from the brink of a lateral cañon on the east face of the Kaibab Plateau, Arizona, down to the more level cañon bed or Nan-ko-weap valley 3,000 feet below. Encamped in the snow, often concealed for days in the driving frozen mist and whirling snow, the party gradually overcame the apparently insurmountable obstacles in the way, and Nov. 24th, camp was formed in the supposed inaccessible depths of the head of the Grand Cañon, a day of reconnoissance and rest. Then the director headed his party of faithful, energetic men and left the writer, who, through illness, had been unable to share in the building of the trail, with three men and outfit to explore and study the inner cañon valleys between the Kaibab Plateau and the Marble Cañon, and the Grand Cañon as far as could be reached south. Seventy-two days of constant work gave some of the information wished, a portion of which is used in this article."


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