Hermit Canyon Once and still a heavy tourist area. The stream flows through a lovely camping area at the Tapeats. There almost always is, but ask before assuming there will be water at Santa Maria spring.
Though it does not show on the map, a good trail leads directly off the Tonto on the east into the narrows; use this for shortest travel rim to river. One section is blasted into the wall 50 feet up with a ceiling overhead. The remnants of impressive trail construction make the hike to Hermit Rapid easy going. The creek and narrows here are dangerous in flood.
Trails The Hermit Trail comes off the rim at Hermits Rest and drops down into Waldron Basin where the Waldron Trail forks south and up to the rim. To the west is Dripping Spring and the Boucher Trail access to Boucher Canyon. Hermit Trail contours the east slope a long way before a rapid descent to the Tonto and then to a camp area at the creek, and from there follows the creek bed to the river. Tonto Trail continues west to Travertine Canyon and Boucher Canyon. The Tonto Tail east to Monument Canyon and on to Indian Garden is a very popular route.
1980 November - Passed through on the way out from Monument Canyon. As we climbed the Redwall I was startled by a roaring sound and looked up to see what might be falling on me just as a cloud of more than a hundred birds (pinion jays) rushed by going down the canyon. Their wings were all completely still and the roar was air rushing through feathers. Unforgettable!!
1989 November - Night 7 on Bass to Hermit with Luis and Nancy. Bighorns were watching from the cliffs above the trail.
1992 September - Night 2 at the rapids from Boucher with CAz Backpackers. Bighorns above cathedral stairs in the early morning of the next day. We left at 3AM and reached the head of Dripping Spring at 1PM.
2003 October - Start south of the Boundary Road and come down the Waldron Trail to Hermit Trail junction and then turn west to reach the Boucher Trail.
2006 April - Case family loop, night 1.