*since there are no trail maps for Sliding Rock Trail, I’m including a lot of pictures of the route.
So after my early morning plunge, I climbed up the 1099 stairs back to my car, changed into dry pants, socks, underwear & boots. I was determined! Decided I would go in reverse. So I drove to the “Day Use Parking Lot”,
took South Rim Trail to connect to the Sliding Rock Trail.
Walking up a “public service road” with these views reminds you of “progress”…
You come to the Wallenda South Tower:
And then head down the Sliding Rock Trail (the arrow should really point down, because you’re going down, down, down)
There are “official” signs referencing the Sliding Rock Trail, but it does not appear on any maps.
It’s steep. It’s rocky. It’s rooty. Wear shoes with really good traction. Going up was a lot easier than going down. (Yeah, who thought I’d say that?) I’ll upload elevation profile soonish.
The views down were awesome:
I encountered “Wallenda” the lizard & we had an informal photo shoot. He was definitely a poser.
Some other views I found interesting:
Technically, Sliding Rock trail takes you to Bridal Veil Falls. The Ranger had told me the water was too high to continue further along the Gorge Floor Trail… but I found this rock formation amazing. It was utterly huge (it is just beyond the base of the falls)
If you look closely at this series, you’ll see hikers in the distance to get an idea of perspective:
I noticed the famous “Eye of the Needle” rock formation (it was referenced in the Interpretative Center)On the other side, I noticed a lizard. And then more. There were at least 20 all over the rocks. If you stand still, they will come out. It was amusing watching them:
It’s a bit of a challenge to make your way up/down to/from Bridal Veil Falls:There is no clear path, so make your way however you find easiest. If you’re heading UP, you’ll see the sign pointing in the general direction.
Shots from various angles of Bridal Veil Falls:
I got there a little after lunchtime, so I decided to sit in the sun and have lunch. I was going to decide about crossing. I was not in the mood to get soaked again.
Views up river:
Watching people crossing was a hoot. Many were so unwilling/hesitant to take off their shoes. I sat in the sunshine for several hours watching. I offered suggestions to those receptive. The easiest way was to take off shoes, roll pants up and hold on to log to wade to the big rock. Then it was an easy hop.
(Picture perfect demonstration)
This guy ended up wading across in water up to his neck!These guys were idiots. I was watching with hands over my eyes.
This took the cake though – they slid down the falls… water was FREEZING. In the summer, that would be fun but in March?!?!
Some other random shots that I thought were interesting:
I am determined to do the entire Gorge Floor Trail. And I’d like to explore the other trails – Inspiration Point Loop, High Bluff, etc.