Family hikes Grand Canyon rim to rim for South Routt education
Hiking 44 miles from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon to the North Rim, then back to the South Rim, Truman Anarella and his parents John Anarella and Kate Krautkramer devoted a family trip to raising money for the South Routt Education Endowment Fund.
At $50 a mile, they raised nearly 80 percent of their goal of $2,200. It isn’t the first time they’ve done the “Rim to Rim” hike as a family. But it is the first time, they attached their trek to a philanthropic goal.
Truman is a senior at Soroco, and Krautkramer teaches kindergarten at South Routt Elementary School. She’s also on the Endowment Fund’s board.
The Yampa Valley Community Foundation is matching 25 cents for every dollar raised.
On the first day, they hiked for 10 and a half hours to the North Rim. They spent one day resting at the lodge with a little time set aside for Truman to work on calculus homework. Then it was back to the South Rim, for a total of 22,000 feet in vertical change. It’s about seven miles down, seven miles across the bottom and seven miles up.
It is grueling, Krautkramer acknowledged.
“The last five miles took a lot of willpower,” Truman said. And his cross-country practice the following Monday “hurt a bit.”
But the positives far outweighed the physical challenges.
“I so believe in South Routt schools,” Krautkramer said. “It’s amazing what our kids have gotten in terms of life experience and a great education.”
Truman has a brother who graduated for Soroco High School last year and a younger sister in seventh grade.
“It’s so miraculous,” Truman said of his third Rim to Rim hike. “Every time I forget how massive the canyon is. And the colors and rock formations are indescribable. It’s also a big physical triumph.”
And this year, he said doing it to raise money for his school made it all the more special.
Truman also enjoyed the time with his family, all easygoing but athletic hikers who go at their own pace.
On the 762 steps down to the bottom, Truman figured out he could listen to three and a half rounds of “Stairway to Heaven.” Going up takes 4.75 rounds of the song and four ibuprofens, he said.
For Krautkramer, her favorite part is “the metaphorical walking through time.”
“As you walk down, you cross distinctly through each layer of canyon rock,” she said. “So as you travel down and back up again, getting increasingly more philosophical, silent and exhausted with every step, you are also moving through geologic history such that sometimes your eye level is millions of years above your foot level. Then, when you get to the top, you have magically arrived back in your own time. It’s incomprehensible, but really fun to think about as you walk.”