North Kaibab Trail & The Home at The Bottom

North Kaibab TrailIn our last post, we pointed you to a fellow hiking enthusiast’s blog “Escaping the Midwest” and her first-timer’s experience Hiking the Grand Canyon. Keeping in line with the theme of hiking the Grand Canyon, more specifically, the North Kaibab Trail, we would like to point you to another post of Julie Dobson’s and her experience staying at the house located at the bottom of the Canyon that few visitor’s that travel the North Kaibab Trail know much about.

You see, almost 50 years ago, Grand Canyon Park authorities built a series of pipes and a water pump house that provided water for the north and south rims of the canyon. In order to maintain this pump, a home was constructed to house the park employee that maintained the pump and pipes, as well as the quality of the water. In 1972, an artist by the name of Bruce Aiken and his wife Mary were given the role of caretaker of the pumps where they lived for over 30 years raising their 3 children along the way.

house-bottom-grand-canyonSince Bruce’s retirement, the old home is now a Ranger Station that provides Rangers in the canyon a place to eat, sleep, replenish their supplies, and provide emergency services for hikers in need (a much welcomed benefit to one of Julie’s friends accompanying her on the hike that you can read about here.). Because the home is located off the main hiking path of North Kaibab Trail and Roaring Springs, most hikers end up walking behind the home taking little to no notice of it.

According the Silas Aikens, the Park Ranger that assisted them during their time of need (who just so happens to be the son of the former caretaker.), Aikens family members used to sleep outside around the home on summer evenings under the incredible evening skies, which Julie herself felt the need to partake in.

To read about Julie Dobson’s experiences hiking along the North Kaibab Trail, including the harrowing adventure she and her fellow hikers experienced that led to her stay at the house at the bottom of grand Canyon visit:

*Images used in this post are provided by Copyright© 2016. All rights reserved.

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About the Author
Mitch Stevens has been leading hiking and backpacking outings throughout the southwest for over ten years. As a Sierra Club hiking leader, writer and photographer, he has promoted the enjoyment and conservation of our remaining wild lands. Born and raised in New York City, Mitch came to discover the great outdoors and fall in love with Arizona’s special places. Through his countless trips across the state and region, Mitch made it his mission to encourage fellow hikers and enthusiasts to protect the beauty of the desert. Now, he continues to embrace his fascination with the desert beauty by creating and leading multigenerational tours throughout the southwest. His experience coupled with his passion for the great outdoors make him a unique tour guide and outings leader.

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