Sunday, March 21, 2010
Connector Trail-Savage Gulf
Ranger station to Stone Door….2 miles
Stone Door Trail….1.8
Historic Cator Savage Cabin…0.5
The weather was too nice for me. It was getting late and I was heading home. I sent a text to Lora, who was still at work, asking if she wanted to go camping. I immediately got a phone call asking where. We decided after we left the house to go to Savage Gulf and then started narrowing down the trails. We stopped to eat and then headed on to set up camp at Stone Door. We had decided to hike the connector trail to Hobbs cabin the next day.
When we got to Stone Door the parking lot was full. I almost had to turn the car on its side to find a place to park. We were thinking……….CROWDED! The Ranger was walking through the parking lot and told us that there were a couple of scout troops camping and that the Alum Gap campsite was full. We asked him about the trail conditions on the Connector trail. When we told him about doing it as a day hike he asked if we knew that the Connector trail was the most difficult in the park. Of course! Luckily we found a site that didn’t have anyone on either side and enjoyed a peaceful evening sitting next to the fire and looking at the stars.
We had a quite morning and didn’t get on the trail until 10am. Only 18 miles to go. It was a beautiful day and even with all the people in the park we only came across a few on the way to Hobbs cabin. The most beautiful area was at the first bridge just East of Stone door. We got to see many wild flowers on the trail as Spring has sprung.
We hiked down to the Historic Cator Savage cabin on a spur trail to check it out. It’s a little cabin in a clearing at the bottom of the gulf. We ate lunch shortly thereafter on the trail. We passed our first people as they were packing up their campsite at Sawmill campground. The strenuous parts are the climbs at either end of the trail; Stone Door and the climb to Hobbs cabin.
At Hobbs cabin we filled our water containers. We had carried just one backpack and took turns carrying it. Lora was carrying it when we left Hobbs cabin. We passed by three hikers on the Rim trail. They looked at me and then at Lora. I asked them why they didn’t have a woman to carry their packs. They got to laughing and said that was what they needed. I told them to watch and learn as we headed out.
We passed a lot of hikers on the way back to Stone Door. It had taken us about four hours one way to make this hike. It was a lot of fun, and we got our camping fix for the week.