After hiking down the South Kaibab Trail, the Phantom Ranch was a welcomed site. I can see why it takes a year in advance to get reservations - it is awesome and the people who work there are THE BEST. Here's some advice from someone who has a LOT of opinions. Stay in the dorms. It is fun to talk with people from all over the world with whom you are sharing this experience. People who hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon are generally very interesting people. The shower doesn't have much water pressure. Just deal with it. You're lucky to get a shower... you're at the bottom of the Grand Canyon for God's sake. They supply a towel and soap. Take your own shampoo. Please do NOT wear heavy perfume. Use the courtesy flush technique. Please. The toilet has no window. It does have a fan. But be kind people. Eat the meals at the canteen. They are hearty and all-you-can-eat. Breakfast is eggs, pancakes, bacon, apricots, orange juice and coffee. If you don't think you can do the hike back up... you can't. Or maybe you just want to be able to walk the next couple weeks when you get to the top. I am forever indebted to a wrangler named Andrea who arranged a mule ride to the top for me. It's called a drag out and it cost one of my fellow hikers and me $900 (all together) for two mules and a third to take our packs back to the top. Worth every penny. And thanks to Ed and Camille, the wranglers who led our mule party back to the top. They had to hoist my sore body on and off that mule. They were amazing.
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