Saturday, January 1, 2011

2009 Day 1 - Lees ferry to Rider Camp RM 17

2009 River trip - links to blogspot days 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Day 1 - Lees ferry to Rider Camp RM 17

Thanks to those sharing their photos (Gary Rybka and Mark Combs provided their photos which I will reference in some later  journal entries).

I provide journal emails with sets of photos mostly focused on Grand Canyon geology (as pointed out by Wayne thruout the trip – any errors are mine).  I provide some separate emails with photos of trip members and specific interesting hikes/fun stuff.

I welcome a photo from each of you in your normal daily attire if you wish a contrast photo to be sent out with a forthcoming journal of “who is who” the river trip.

Geology is the science that deals with the history of the earth (including volcanism, weather, ocean/lake locations/levels, and recording life on earth) as recorded in rocks.  The Grand Canyon is one of the best places to see Geology.  We will discuss these and other aspects of Geology in these journals.

For more information on Geology and the Grand Canyon I provide a number of links on my web site but also share this NPS link – it is a great basic resource for those interested in more information on Grand Canyon Geology.  And, of course, everyone should have a copy of Carving Grand Canyon and Ancient Landscapes – I reference them in various journals.

These journals will be posted to my website when completed – your feedback and corrections are desired and will be incorporated.

The images for our 2009 Grand Canyon trip will be made available at - you will have access to all resolutions of all photos I took.  Selected photos from a 2008 Sept River Trip are already on Flickr.  The 2009 materials are not yet loaded – I am still downloading and processing the 50GB of data cards from the trip.

Let us proceed onward to Day 1 of our Grand Canyon trip and the Day 1 rocks (I am trying to keep emails small enough so that you will not have trouble receiving them – please tell me of any issues).

At river mile 0 the Shinarump Conglomerate and Moenkopi Formation are visible (they are eroded away thruout the bulk of the Grand Canyon so we need to study/enjoy them now).

The classic Grand Canyon layers are in our future as we board the boats.


Soon we pass Training Rock – this area is used by NPS and sometimes by guides for training

 gc9t_002191 d1p1aResize.jpg

At mile 1 the Kaibab Limestone appears ahead.


And we pass the little Paria Riffle – the Paria River from the north is a small creek entering on river right with minimal impact


At mile 1.7 the Toroweap Formation is seen rising out of the river – here a photo from 2009 on river left


And here using a photo taken in 2008 on river right


After mile 3.9 we see the Coconino Sandstone which will stay above river level for the rest of our journey


Note the cross bedding in the Coconino seen at bottom of below detail picture


From roughly mile 4.5 below looking back up river at Navajo Bridge on left we see the top cliff is Kaibab Limestone, the slope under it is Toroweap Formation, and the bottom cliff is Coconino Sandstone

Mile 4.5ThreeLayers_IMG_0937_resize2009.jpg

After mile 5 we see the Hermit Shale appear on river left (red at bottom of picture) – this is a slope forming deposit


Here is a photo of a typical Hermit slope


Ten Mile rock is a large block of Coconino Sandstone that fell from the cliffs above the Supai


Supai Group appears around mile 11.4 – below is photo of Supai exposure near Brown inscription, note the cliff forming Supai Group Esplanade Sandstone context with Hermit Shale slopes


Here is Brown Inscription at mile 12 in Supai


After Mile 12.5 the Supai Gorge becomes well defined – we will see a number of different gorges at river level during our trip


RM 14.5 on river left Tanner Wash cuts thru the Supai forming a slot canyon - its debris flow forms Sheer Wall Rapid (mile 14.5)

most rapids we see on our trip are formed by debris flows from side canyons


Sheer Wall Rapid


The Supai (especially Esplanade Sandstone) often develops potholes – this becomes an important source of water for hikers crossing the Esplanade level in western grand canyon.  Of course, one cannot count on finding this but many potholes are large and maintain water for weeks – so recent trip reports can be very useful.

In any case, we saw many potholes near river level in the Supai Gorge – here is one example discussed by Wayne on our river trip


We proceed down river towards Rider Canyon – our planned campsite.

Debris flows from Rider Canyon form House Rock Rapid (mile 17) which is our first real rapid.


We have arrived at our campsite – Rider Camp river right mile 17 – we unload and setup the kitchen – “Unload the boat” will become routine

Below we see Jamie (Canyoneers river guide)


Wayne pointed out how river shale had filled several channels at boundaries in the Supai across from our Rider Camp site – these classic lens shapes we will see at various GC strata boundaries forming distinctive smiley faces.

Here is a photo of one channel across from Rider Camp:


Here is another channel even more distinctive


Day 1 Duke (aka Groover) at Rider Camp – great ambiance


This was our most rainy camp on the trip – many took shelter under overhangs – except this camp guest


End of Day 1

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